Technical Bulletin No. 0767: Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material

Workers at several pulp and paper mills have identified some scales formed in primarily bleach plant and paper machine area pipes, valves, and other equipment as containing naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM). As is the case for the more common oilfield NORM scale which results from deposits of radionuclides from naturally occurring materials in groundwater, this material is composed of naturally occurring radionuclides that appear at a level which is low to the degree that human health is not likely endangered by occasional or even routine exposure to the scale. Nonetheless, state NORM regulations and some worker protection considerations may require action when such NORM is discovered.