SPM36

Radon, Health and Natural Hazards
Convener: G. Gillmore 
Mon, 20 Apr, 15:30–17:00  / Room SM1
This session will focus on a variety of impacts and hazard-associated manifestations of radon gas. This gas has major significance for human health as the second leading cause of lung cancer. As well as being a hazard in its own right, there is evidence that radon concentrations (e.g. atmospheric, soil-gas and groundwater) can be used as a diagnostic of crustal geophysical processes and, hence, associated geohazards. For example, recent researches have revealed radon anomalies observed as possible earthquake precursors. A link has also been demonstrated between ocean and earth tides and built-environment radon levels in some locations. Due to radon emanating from rocks and soils, there are also archaeological aspects which include links between (ancient) mines and the health of miners, cave dwellers (historical and modern), cave visitors / guides and archaeological excavations / excavators.

This geohazard then has a wide and significant societal impact in the developed and developing worlds. This session will help to promote our understanding of the drivers behind indoor atmospheric radon concentrations as much is still unknown. Understanding the behaviour and drivers of radon gas will greatly help hazard planners both concerning radon itself and using it as an earthquake / landslide / volcanic hazard monitor / precursor.

In this session the above topics will be discussed, and poster presenters will have the opportunity to give a brief outline of their work.