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Marble Institute of America Radon/Radiation Update

July 20, 2009
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We are writing to make you aware of the latest assault on the natural stone industry.
The Conference of Radiation Control Program Directors (CRCPD), a nonprofit non-governmental professional organization dedicated to radiation protection recently distributed a document called "Potential Occupational Exposure, Fabrication of Granite Counter Tops" to its membership and contacts, which  includes all of the state and many private radiation organizations.  The document was submitted by Dave Bernhardt, CHP, who is an Affiliate Member of the CRCPD.  The scientific data cited in the document was compiled by a member of the BuildClean Board of Directors, Linda Kincaid, and suggests that dust from the fabrication of granite may pose a radiation risk to stone workers.
Unfortunately, the CRCPD admittedly did not subject the report to independent review prior to its distribution, which would have uncovered several serious flaws.  For example, the  report failed to use standard scientific procedures and made incorrect assumptions about standard operating procedures within the natural stone industry. 
Environmental Health & Engineering (EH&E), a reputable scientific consulting firm that has worked with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and that has conducted studies for the Marble Institute of America, reviewed Kincaid's work and found significant problems with the research, its assumptions and the conclusions. 
Based on the accredited scientific analysis of the findings, the Bernhardt report looks like another example of questionable science being passed off as fact to paint the worst possible picture of granite. We honestly believe the CRCPD was unknowingly used by those on a campaign to smear granite.  And we are hopeful that the CRCPD will take immediate action to correct this unfortunate mistake.  Rest assured, however, that if the CRCPD is unwilling to take corrective action to "set the record straight", the MIA is prepared to contact each individual and organization that received the report to make them aware of the serious issues with the research, assumptions and conclusions depicted in the report.
The Marble Institute of America's  goal is to make sure questionable science is corrected with unimpeachable facts.
Make no mistake, The MIA has always been committed to protecting the welfare of the industry's workers.  If we had any scientific evidence that specific types of granite posed real health risks, we would immediately notify the industry.  So far, however, no such evidence has been found.  And to-date, critics of natural stone have repeatedly refused to share the data they claim prove the risk exists.
Attached, please find a copy of both the original report and the EH&E critique.  While the original report has attracted no publicized media attention that we are aware of, we want to make sure you are prepared to handle any questions that may arise.
As always, please contact the MIA if you have any questions.
Guido Gliori
MIA President 2009
Grazzini Brothers & Company

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