Students Encouraged by DEP to Enter National Radon Poster Contest

DEP urges Pennsylvania students, ages 9 to 14, to enter a national poster contest that helps raise awareness about the dangers of radon. The contest deadline is Nov. 2, 2012.

The poster contest is designed to help students and their families learn about the dangers of radon. Nearly 20,000 lung cancer deaths each year are the result of radon exposure. In Pennsylvania, nearly half the homes in the state have elevated radon levels. Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas produced by the breakdown of uranium in rocks and soil. It enters homes through tiny cracks in basements and foundations, but home mitigation systems can quickly and significantly reduce radon levels.

The poster contest is sponsored by Kansas State University’s National Radon Program Services. The contest is open to all students who are enrolled in public, private, Department or Defense, or home school. Students involved with a sponsoring art, computer, science, 4-H club or scouting organization may also participate. Judging will be based on content accuracy, visual communication of topic, reproducibility and originality.

The poster topics are:
• What is radon?
• Where does radon come from?
• How does radon get into homes?
• Radon can cause lung cancer; and
• Test homes for radon.

National winners will receive award plaques and gift cards in the amount of $1,000 for first place, $600 for second, $400 for third and $400 for special online voting recognition. These winners will also be recognized in their home area, and the posters will be reproduced and distributed nationally to promote radon awareness. A winning submission and runner-up will be chosen for entry into the national contest from each state and U.S. territory.

For more information about the contest and for entry submission forms, visit the Bureau of Radiation Protection’s Radon homepage at, keyword: Radon. Information about radon testing and mitigation can also be found on that page or by calling 1-800-23 RADON.