On harmonization of radon maps

  • Peter Bossew German Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS), Berlin, Germany
  • Igor Čeliković Vinča” Institute of Nuclear Sciences, Univerity of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia
  • Giorgia Cinelli European Commission, Joint Research Centre (JRC), Ispra, Ital
  • Giancarlo Ciotoli Italian National Research Council, CNR-IGAG, Rome, Italy
  • Filipa Domingos University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
  • Valeria Gruber Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety (AGES), Linz, Austria
  • Federica Leonardi Istituto Nazionale Assicurazione contro gli Infortuni sul Lavoro (INAIL), Rome, Italy
  • Jovana Nikolov University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Science (UNSPMF), Novi Sad, Serbia
  • Gordana Pantelić “Vinča“ Institute of Nuclear Sciences, Univerity of Belgrade, Serbia
  • Alcides Pereira University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
  • Eric Petermann German Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS), Berlin, Germany
  • Natasa Todorović University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Science (UNSPMF), Novi Sad, Serbia
  • Rosabianca Trevisi Istituto Nazionale Assicurazione contro gli Infortuni sul Lavoro (INAIL), Rome, Italy
Keywords: Radon map; Radon priority areas; harmonization; European Basic Safety Standards; Modifiable Areal Unit Problem


Background: Maps are important tools for geographic visualization of the state of the environment with respect to resources as well as to hazards. One of the hazards is indoor radon (Rn), believed to be the most important cause of lung cancer after smoking. In particular, as part of Rn mitigation policy and in compliance with the European Basic Safety Standards, EU Member States have to declare areas with elevated indoor Rn concentration levels. However, as this is done by national authorities according to individually chosen criteria, the resulting maps are not easily comparable.

Objective: We aim to identify causes for the lack of compatibility of maps and suggest solutions for the problem.

Design: This study draws from experiences of recent research projects, literature, and personal involvement of the authors in the discussions.

Results: An overview is given on causes and effects of lack of compatibility between maps. Existing experiences are reported. Options for defining lack of compatibility and for identifying it are discussed. Methods for harmonization, that is, remediating lack of compatibility, are addressed.

Conclusions: The difficulty of harmonization increases with the aggregation level of data which support maps. Harmonization is the more difficult, the higher aggregated the data are which support maps. In particular, harmonization of radon priority area maps is technically non-trivial, and theoretical efforts as well as practical tests will have to be undertaken.


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How to Cite
Bossew P., Čeliković I., Cinelli G., Ciotoli G., Domingos F., Gruber V., Leonardi F., Nikolov J., Pantelić G., Pereira A., Petermann E., Todorović N., & Trevisi R. (2022). On harmonization of radon maps. Journal of the European Radon Association, 3. https://doi.org/10.35815/radon.v3.7554
Special issue - European Radon Week 2020

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