Last school year, we placed equipment in schools to monitor radon levels. Radon levels can fluctuate even over the course of one day, so it takes months of monitoring to get a reading of long-term radon levels in a given space.
Radon monitoring results for all schools are now available on the Department of Education’s website at education.gov.yk.ca/radon-monitoring.html.
In 2008, the Teen Parent Centre was one of the buildings that tested slightly higher than the recommended range for radon in 2008. Further testing was done in 2009, with lower results within the recommended range. The most recent monitoring results from October 2016 to March 2017 indicate radon levels at the Teen Parent Centre are in the range where remediation is recommended within two years.
Over the 2017 summer break, we began remediation work to address radon levels at the Teen Parent Centre. The work includes ventilating the school’s crawlspace to clear radon gas emitted from the ground beneath the school. We expect this work to be completed by January 2018, and we do not anticipate any impact to programs at the Teen Parent Centre as result of this work. We will continue to monitor the Teen Parent Centre after this work is done to ensure radon levels are within the acceptable range.
The Government of Yukon has developed standard practices for radon testing, monitoring and, where necessary, remediation in all government buildings, including schools. We will follow these practices to test radon levels in schools, and will remediate schools as needed to ensure radon levels are within the range recommended by Health Canada.
It is also important to check the radon levels in your home. You can either purchase a do-it-yourself radon test kit from a hardware store or online, or you can hire a certified radon measurement professional. Yukon has a number of specialists who have been certified by the Canadian National Radon Proficiency Program. You can find a listing of certified professionals in Yukon at www.takeactiononradon.ca.
Radon testing should occur during the colder months (October through April). A minimum 3-month test is recommended.
Radon is a colourless, odourless, naturally occurring gas in Yukon. It does not pose an immediate danger to health and is only a concern if there is prolonged exposure to high concentrations over many years. More information is available from Yukon Housing Corporation at www.housing.yk.ca/radon.html.