[Date Prev][Date Next]
[cdn-nucl-l] Port Hope Evening Guide: Low-dose radiation beneficial to health
Interesting letter ...
Port Hope Evening Guide (ON)
Low-dose radiation beneficial to health
Mon 28 Apr 2008, Editorial Page
To the Editor:
Contrary to the opinions of the Canadian Real Estate Association, Port Hope
is not the "radon capital of Canada." (letter from John Miller, Guide, April
25). My house on Francis Street shows a measured basement reading of 1.0
picocuries per litre. For comparison, measurements in Regina show an average
of 1.3 pCi/l, in Prince George B.C. 2.6pCi/l and in Barriere B.C. 3.7 pCi/l
(Radiation Protection Bureau Health Canada), and I am sure that there are
many places in Canada, not yet surveyed, where these figures would be
The association of cancer with radon exposure for uranium miners is well
documented, but these workers have been exposed to radon levels many times
greater than that found in homes.
Various authorities have used a simple linear no-threshold model, to
calculate the numbers of cancer deaths predicted for the much lower radon
levels normally found in homes. However, extensive surveys do not support
the LNT hypothesis and suggest that some level of exposure to radon is, in
fact, beneficial. This effect is termed "hormesis," a process whereby the
body's defences against cell damage are stimulated by radiation.
Dr. Bernard Cohen found that cancer incidence in the high-radon area of
Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, was lower than the Pennsylvania average.
Subsequently, Dr. Cohen obtained data for 272,000 homes in the most
populated U.S. counties which confirmed an inverse relationship between
radon levels and cancer incidence.
To quote James Muckerheide, State Nuclear Engineer for the state of
Massachusetts, "Low-dose radiation is documented to be beneficial to human
health but, for political reasons, radiation is assumed to be harmful at any
dose. Radiation protection scientists, and others, who cover up the data
that contradict present policy should be investigated for misconduct."
Interested readers might wish to refer to Mr. Muckerheide's article "It's
Time to Tell the Truth About the Health Benefits of Low-Dose Radiation", on
Brian Parr / Port Hope
© 2008 Osprey Media Group Inc. All rights reserved.