Environmental Protection Agency's Role in Protecting the Public and the Environment From Nonionizing Radiation Exposure

Gao ID: CED-77-95 July 6, 1977

Nonionizing radiation has become a national concern because of the rapid increase in its use and its potential harm to public health.

The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) requested 1978 budget for nonionizing program activities is approximately $1 million, including $200,000 for environmental measurements and $830,000 for biological effects research. The EPA program includes measurement of the general environment and calculation, measurement, and evaluation of specific types of sources. EPA has performed 25 field measurement studies since 1973. No detrimental effects have been observed in the general population exposed to nonionizing radiation from environmental sources, but demonstrable effects have been observed from chronic low-level exposure. A decision as to the need for protection standards for population exposure will not be made until March 1978.

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