Moab + Uranium = Radon
Experts Gather in Moab for Region 8 Radon Conference
By Eleanor Divver
Radon experts from the western and southwestern United States traveled to Moab in April to participate in the Region 8 Radon Conference. Moab was a uranium mining operation for many and a large part minerals from the region have helped with nuclear weapons and energy for our country.
Initially, uranium was discarded as waste during the extraction of vanadium. At the start of World War I, uranium became a key component of nuclear weaponry. The need for uranium continued throughout World War II and was used to create energy in nuclear power plants.
On Wednesday, April 6, conference attendees traveled to the Yellow Cat area near Moab. We discovered blast holes dug to recover uranium, as well as galleries and the monitoring of mining veins. Of course, we had Geiger counters and detected high levels of uranium where the mining had taken place. It was fascinating to see where miners would claim an area, dig, blast and blast at will, as long as the area seemed ripe for uranium.
The conference continued the next day where attendees shared their research on the direct link between radon and lung cancer, radon testing in homes and schools, hard-to-mitigate homes, and new legislation. on radon.
One in three homes tested in Utah have radon levels that exceed what is considered safe for humans. Visit radon.utah.gov for more information and to purchase a test kit.