Element of Risk
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Element of Risk : The Politics of Radon

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Description

Radiation, radioactivity, radon: these are words that, since Hiroshima, the Cold War and Three Mile Island, have conjured fear and fascination for many Americans. The danger of radon - a colourless, odourless gas that could seemingly strike any home and afflict its residents with cancer, was brought home in the 1980s when whole neighbourhoods were deemed unsafe due to a perceived threat from radon. But how much of a threat does radon really pose? Is the government's aggressive policy warranted. Indeed, is their a legitimate threat at all? These are the questios Leonard A. Code asks in this provocative and fascinating new book, and his answers are ones that all homeowners will want to understand. In clear, non-technical language, Code dispells many of the myths surrounding radon as he makes recommendations for a coherent reasonable environmental policy towards what is, certainly, a dangerous gas. As he carefully traces the development of the US indoor radon policy, Code illuminates the many scientific uncertainties that lie behind it, exposes the policies of those who stand to gain from radon policy decisions made in Washington, and challenges the EPA's risk-cost assessment of radon levels. Thoughtful and timely, ELEMENT OF RISK illuminates one of the most important public policyissues of our time.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 139.7 x 213.36 x 15.24mm | 226.8g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • halftones, line drawings
  • 0195093674
  • 9780195093674

Back cover copy

The Politics of Radon: The Danger of radon--an odorless, potentially cancer-causing gas--struck home in the 1980s when whole neighborhoods were deemed unsafe and homeowners were forced to relocate, sometimes at great expense.show more

About Leonard A. Cole

Teaches in the Program in Science, Technology, and Society at Rutgers University, Newark and is author of the widely acclaimed Clouds of Secrecy: The Army's Germ Warfare Tests Ovr Populated Areasshow more

Review quote

Splendid... Cole is so deft in analyzing the science and politics of radon that it is had to know whether to laugh or cry. * Nature *show more

Table of contents

Preface ; 1. The Development of Radon Policy ; 2. The Science of Uncertainty ; 3. Leapers and Loopers ; 4. Lopers and Loppers ; 5. Federal Regulators and Congress ; 6. Radon in the States and the Case of New Jersey ; 7. Private and Public Interests ; 8. The Press, Science, and Radon ; 9. Radon Policies in Other Countries: Sweden and Finland ; 10. Democracy, Risk, and Reason ; Appendix A: Radioactive Decay Chain of Uranium-238 ; Appendix B: Letters ; Appendix C: The Environmental Protection Agency/Advertising Council Messages ; Appendix D: Differing Perspectives on Radon Policy by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy ; Appendix E: Radon Policies of the American Medical Association and the Health Physics Society ; Indexshow more

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