Buttafuoco,G., Tallarico,A., Falcone,G. and Guagliardi,I.(2010): A geostatistical approach for mapping and uncertainty assessment of geogenic radon gas in soil in an area of southern Italy. Environ. Earth Sci., 61, 491-505.


 Spatial distribution of concentrations of radon gas in the soil is important for defining high risk areas because geogenic radon is the major potential source of indoor radon concentrations regardless of the construction features of buildings. An area of southern Italy (Catanzaro-Lamezia plain\9 was surveyed to study the relationship between radon gas concentrations in the soil, geology and structural patterns. Moreover, the uncertainty associated with the mapping of geogenic radon in soil gas was assessed. Multi-Gaussian kriging was used to map the geogenic soil gas radon concentration, while conditional sequential Gaussian simulation was used to yield a series of stochastic images representing equally probable spatial distributions of soil radon across the study area. The stochastic images generated by the sequential Gaussian simulation were used to assess the uncertainty associated with the mapping of geogenic radon in the soil and they were combined to calculate the probability of exceeding a specified critical threshold that might cause concern for human health. The study showed that emanation of radon gas radon was also dependent on geological structure and lithology. The results have provided insight into the influence of basement geochemistry on the spatial distribution of radon levels at the soil/atmosphere interface and suggested that knowledge of the geology of the area may be helpful in understanding the distribution pattern of radon near the earth's surface.

Keywords: Radon mapping; Uncertainty; Stochastic simulation; Radon gas in soil; Faults』

Materials and methods
 The study area: geological and structural setting
 Sampling radon gas in soil
 Geostatistical approach
  Variogram estimation and modeling
  Multi-Gaussian approach
  Multi-Gaussian kriging
  Stochastic simulation
  Probabilistic summary of the set of simulations
  Decision-making in the presence of uncertainty
Results and discussion