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Georgia Middle School Student Wins 2004 National Radon Action Month Poster Contest

Release Date: 01/15/2004
Contact Information: Dawn Harris-Young, (404) 562-8421,
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that Marki Grace Calvert, from Loganville, Georgia is the winner of the 2004 National Radon Action Month Poster Contest. She, along with her family and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) County Extension Educator, Rebecca Chenhall attended a ceremony in Washington today to unveil the winning poster.

The Radon Poster Contest, jointly sponsored by EPA and USDA, is intended to raise awareness of the issue of Radon and the importance of testing homes and fixing elevated levels. Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas which is invisible and odorless. It comes from deposits of uranium in soil, rock and water. It is harmlessly dispersed in outdoor air, but when trapped in buildings, can be harmful, especially at elevated levels.

To bring further understanding to this potential health risk, EPA is promoting January as National Radon Action Month to help reduce this threat. This month will be filled with activities on the local and national level to promote awareness of the dangers of elevated levels of Radon gas in our nation's homes, schools and other frequented enclosed areas.

Radon is a serious threat to public health and is potentially responsible for 15,000 - 20,000 lung cancer deaths per year. It is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking and more than six million families in the United States are exposed to elevated levels of radon in their homes every day. The good news is ... radon is a problem that can be fixed.

Since the 1980s EPA has worked in partnership with the states and other public health and consumer protection organizations to encourage the public to test their homes and fix elevated levels. EPA has provided more than 10 million dollars annually to the states and other organizations to help in the campaign through a wide range of outreach and education programs, like the National Radon Action Month Poster Contest.

For further information on the activities that will be occurring throughout National Radon Action Month, the public can contact EPA's Office of Indoor Air at 1-(800) 438-4318.