Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Uranium and Radon Contamination Not Always Linked to Mining

By: Duane Craig

Photo from:
There doesn't have to be uranium mining nearby to cause contamination of water supplies because uranium occurs naturally in many parts of the country. Take Georgia for example.
In Macon, some homeowners were recently surprised to find uranium at 21 times the safe limit in their well water and radon in their indoor air. One woman claimed she was drinking nearly a gallon of the water every day, and others who had their hair tested for uranium found it contained high levels of the radioactive material, according to this report in

There is a layer of granite that runs through several southeastern states. Water that lies below that layer can be high in uranium, and radon is more prevalent above ground in those places also. This creates double jeopardy for those living above the granite. Radon inside buildings is thought to contribute to incidents of lung cancer as people bathe and wash clothes in water containing uranium. In other cases, the radon may seep into buildings through the foundations as it naturally rises through the soil. One in 15 radon air tests in Georgia will have unacceptable limits of the gas.

Twenty-two water tests in the Macon area had uranium present in excess of 30 parts per billion, the recognized safe limit, but a few tests had concentrations as high as 300 and 400 parts per billion. Water testing is on the increase in Macon.

No comments: