A map has revealed hotspots of radioactive gas in Scotland.

The radon is formed by radioactive decay from the small amounts of uranium that can be found naturally in all rocks and soils.

It is colourless, odourless and tasteless but it is found everywhere.

The UK Government, however, states that "every building contains radon but the levels are usually low."

And that "the chances of a higher level depend on the type of ground."

The radiation emitted from the elements can increase the risk of cancer.

The UK Government has released a map showing where high levels are more likely.

The darker the colour, the greater the chance of a higher level. The chance is less than one home in a hundred in the white areas and greater than one in three in the darkest areas.

Here are the worst affected areas in Scotland

Cairngorms National Park

HeraldScotland: Cairngorm National ParkCairngorm National Park

Most of the Cairngorms National Park has 1-3% of radon potential, however large parts also have 10-30%, with a couple of pockets of areas with greater than 30%.

Dingwall and Inverness


Large parts of the Ross and Cromarty and Invernessshire have 1-3% of radon potential, with areas around Dingwall and Inveress having levels of around 5-10%.

Glen Mor


Below Invergarry, along the shore of Glen Mor, large areas have greater than 30% radon potential.

Kintradwell to Badbea


The coastal stretch of land from Kintradwell to Badbea has greater than 30% radon potential.

North Ayrshire


Areas in the Garnock valley have 10-30% radon potential, with towns like Dalry, Beith and Glengarnock all experiencing high levels of radioactive gas.



Most of the mainland of Orkney has 10-30% of radon potential with areas above Stromness having over 30%.

What is radon gas?

Radon is a naturally-occurring radioactive gas that we can't see, smell or taste it.

The gas is formed is formed by the radioactive decay of the small amounts of uranium that occur naturally in from rocks and soil.

Why is it a risk to our health?

As radioactive elements decay they emit radiation. Expose to this is a risk to our health as the radiation can cause damage in living tissues and increase the risk of cancer in humans.

Where is it found?

Radon is found everywhere due it being formed from the uranium in all rocks and soils.

Why is radiation harmful?

We are all exposed to radiation from natural and man-made sources but the radioactive elements formed by the decay of radon can be inhaled and enter our lungs.

Once inside our the lungs, these elements continue to decay and emit radiation and are then absorbed by the nearby lung tissues and cause localised damage.

Studies have shown that increased exposure to radon increases your risk of lung cancer.