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Prevention and mitigation methods related to indoor radon and natural radionuclides in building materials

26 February 2019

Recorded broadcast →

Presenters: Joshua Kerber, Friderik Knez, Tony Löfqvist 
Date of broadcast: 26 February 2019, 3:30 pm CET

About the webinar

Many countries have developed regulations on indoor radon and have verified these regulations, but remedial and preventative measures are not sufficiently used. This is related to an absence of a trained workforce on remedial and preventative techniques.

The IAEA is developing a new Technical Document to support radiation protection against indoor radon and Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORM) in building materials by highlighting prevention and mitigation methods. The document will include both mitigation measures for existing buildings and prevention measures for new buildings.

The webinar will be divided into three sections and will last about 90 minutes. 

In the first section, Tony Löfqvist, a technical engineer from Sweden, will discuss NORM and gamma radiation in stone-based construction materials for buildings. This section will highlight how to test in all stages of the production cycle, which include in construction material before it has been removed from rock pits, in factories during manufacturing and in constructed buildings.

In the second section, Joshua Kerber, an environmental research scientist from the United States, will discuss how to prevent radon from entering buildings, regardless of building type. Design features and construction details will be presented along with field research results from housing stock in a cold climate.

The concluding presentation by Friderik Knez, an expert on radon mitigation from Slovenia, will focus on the remediation of large existing public buildings. Case studies will showcase examples of radon mitigation and illustrate its principles. Different possibilities and factors affecting the design and execution of radon mitigation will be also discussed. 

Learning objectives

During the webinar, participants will learn about:

  • How to perform testing of naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM) in building materials; 
  • How construction, including the fine details, can keep radon from entering a building; and,
  • Factors to consider in the design and implementation of radon mitigation.

About the presenters

Joshua Kerber

Joshua Kerber is an Environmental Research Scientist for the Minnesota Department of Health in the State of Minnesota, USA. He has worked in the indoor air quality and radon field since 2002 and the home construction industry since the 1990s. He has a Master’s Degree in Atmospheric Science and has worked and trained in two US state radon programs: Minnesota and Ohio. More recently, Joshua has worked on the implementation of the Minnesota Radon Awareness Act and the Minnesota Radon Licensing Act. He assists Minnesota contractors with radon and vapor intrusion mitigation assistance, along with providing research, information, and outreach to Minnesota and national constituents. He serves on many national radon standard workgroups including the Conference of Radiation Control Program Directors’ E-25 committee on radon and the International Atomic Energy Agency’s work on Radon Prevention and Mitigation in Buildings.

Friderik Knez

Friderik Knez is the head of the Department for Building Physics at the Slovenian National Building and Civil Engineering Institute. He has been working in the field of radon mitigation in Slovenia for over 20 years. His expertise is in mitigation of large, public buildings, such as schools and kindergartens. He is also working with the Slovenian authorities in efforts to introduce radon mitigation to a broad level. He is the author of two guidelines in the field of radon: mitigation in existing schools and kindergarten and prevention of radon in buildings.

Tony Löfqvist

Tony Löfqvist from Mark- och Miljökontroll i Särö AB (MMK), Gothenburg is a technical engineer with over 30 years of experience in the field of radon in soil and radon investigations and remedies in buildings, both nationally and internationally. He is also a technical manager of the only accredited laboratory for NORM measurements in construction materials in Sweden and is representing Sweden through the Swedish Standard Institute (SIS) as their expert in the EU TC 351, WG 3, TG31 and TG 32 for supplying methods for BSS directive implementation. MMK is a referral organization for Swedish Radiation Safety Authority (SSM), National Board of Housing, Building and Planning (Boverket), and Accredited Field Laboratory Swedac nr: 2052 - natural radiation.

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