Research and analysis

Domestic radon programme in England: evaluation and equity audit

This audit (HPA-CRCE-013) evaluates the radon programme to identify factors affecting the likelihood of remediation.


HPA-CRCE-013: evaluation and equity audit of the domestic radon programme in England

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The UK has a programme to limit the radon risk to health which provides:

  • advice on protective measures in new buildings
  • technical guidance on the installation of protective measures
  • encouragement of radon measurements
  • remediation in existing dwellings in high radon areas

This audit evaluates the radon programme at the individual homes and geographical level to identify factors that influence the likelihood of remediation. The results show that 49% of the householders responded to a survey and 30% of the respondents stated that they had done some remediation to reduce the indoor radon levels.

Householders with higher incomes and higher socio-economic status are more likely than others to remediate. Householders are less likely to remediate if one of the following applies:

  • they are living in a property with higher radon concentration
  • there are current smokers in the dwelling
  • they are unemployed or an unskilled worker
  • they have lived in the property for a long length of time
  • they are elderly (65+ years) and live by themselves

Householders appeared to be more likely to remediate if they considered the information on radon and its risk to be very clear and useful. This emphasises the importance of communication with householders, as well as with local stakeholders (mainly local authority staff in housing and environmental health departments) who can engage the general public, disseminate information and raise awareness of health risks from radon.

Published 1 February 2011