Tag Archives | indoor air quality

Effective & Low-Cost IAQ Management Strategies


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All schools need to have good indoor air quality (IAQ) to ensure that all students and staff are  healthy and can perform as best as possible. But to the untrained eye, it can be hard to tell when a school has good or poor IAQ. This workshop will help you to understand what IAQ issues look like, and what simple measures you can take to reduce pollutant sources and impacts.


Dave Blake, Northwest Clean Air Agency; Seattle, WA –  Dave Blake created and has manDaveBlakePhotoaged the indoor air program at Northwest Clean Air Agency since 1991.  Working in close collaboration with Rich Prill, a building scientist with Washington State University Cooperative Extension Energy Program, Dave has completed evaluations of all public and most private schools in a three county area of NW Washington State.  He has responded to a steady flow of indoor air quality concerns in homes, public and commercial buildings referred to him by three county health departments since 1992.  He has delivered hundreds of presentations to diverse audiences on all topics relating to indoor air quality.  He was recognized by EPA Region 10 for asbestos enforcement (1995) and indoor air quality work (2000), and shared the national EPA Indoor Air Quality Special Achievement Award (2002) and EPA Indoor Air Quality Distinguished Service Award (2004) with Rich Prill.

Kevin Stewart, American Lung Association of the Mid-Atlantic –  Kevin Stewart is director of environmental health for the American Lung Association of the Mid-Atlantic.  His major responsibilities include informing the public about indoor and outdoor air pollution, its health effects, its sources, and its means of control.  He addresses issues such as secondhand tobacco smoke, biological pollutants, air quality in schools, indoor radon gas and outdoor ozone and fine particle pollution. Kevin also has extensive experience working with schools on the EPA’s IAQ Tools for Schools program.

Andrew Ellsworth, Green & Healthy Schools Academy –  Andrew will present a number of case studies of schools and districts that have implemented IAQ Tools for Schools.


1)  Understand how IAQ is related to occupant health and performance.

2) Learn how to recognize common IAQ problems and what the appropriate solutions are.

3) Know what tools, resources and support resources are available.


Light refreshments and snacks will be provided.


Thanks to the generosity of our funders, we have grant funding available to cover the full cost of this workshop for school personnel that would like to attend.  If you work for a school or district, please contact Andrew Ellsworth (andrewe@gbapgh.org) to arrange for discounted registration.

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GBCI CMP  This event is approved for 2.0 GBCI CEUs.

As a USGBC Education Partner, GBA makes it easy for members to report CE hours. Please provide your GBCI number so we can auto-report your credits (for applicable events).  Non-members can still earn CEUs but will need to self-report.

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Particles II Webinar: Health Impacts, Standards, Monitoring, and Building-Level Mitigation

Join the ROCIS initiative (Reducing Outdoor Contaminants in Indoor Spaces) for this two-part webinar on indoor air quality.  Join us for one or both of the webinar sessions.

Click here to register for the Particles II Webinar.


Gain a better understanding of the nature of particulate matter – their sources, their health impact and interaction with other pollutants. What insights are emerging regarding their health impacts? What understanding do we have due to air quality monitoring in the U.S., and how have the air quality standards impacted particulate matter measurement? Bill Turner will examine types of monitoring equipment with an explanation of the role and limitations of lower cost monitors that are emerging. Particles comprise a large class of pollutants –knowledge of their characteristics is critical to understanding how building-level mitigation strategies can reduce exposure. Bill will address the current best practices to lower the concentration of building level particulate matter.


  1. List four factors that increase a person’s vulnerability to particulate matter in their environment, and four health impacts that have been established
  2. Describe the two primary ways the particulate matter is quantified as part of air quality assessment and the limitations of each
  3. Given a case study involving an existing home with a high outdoor particle impact, propose a low-cost (<$1,000) and a higher cost ($1,000 – $5,000) mitigation strategy
  4. Identify four factors to consider when retrofitting a forced air duct system with a high MERV filter

PRESENTER: Bill Turner, President / CEO, Turner Building Science and Design, LLC, Harrison, ME

Bill received his B.S. and M.S. in Engineering from Northeastern University and served for ten years on the research staff of Harvard University School of Public Health. During that time he conducted longitudinal air quality studies inside and outside of homes in six cities, evaluating particles, VOCs, and gases associated with combustion and other sources. Since then, Bill has focused on building science, sustainability, and resilience issues, including energy use, indoor air quality,moisture, building shell design, net zero buildings, building commissioning, and forensic air quality evaluations. His experience includes rebuilding existing homes and other buildings and designing new buildings. He has published and lectured extensively.

RESPONDENT: Tom Phillips, ROCIS Principal Investigator, Schools/Commercial Focus, Davis, CA

Tom has spent his career at the intersection of research and policy, addressing public health, pollution, and buildings. At the California Air Resources Board from 1985 to 2009, he updated air quality standards and wrote IAQ guidelines for homes.  He served as technical advisor for green building programs and large exposure studies, and he helped develop an ozone test method and emission standard for air cleaners.  He also designed and managed research contracts on exposure, activity patterns, and building ventilation.  Since 2010, as principal at Healthy Building Research, Tom has focused on resilient building design and operation and on indoor environmental quality in low energy buildings.

Thanks to The Heinz Endowments for its support of the ROCIS initiative, Reducing Outdoor Contaminants in Indoor Spaces, and this webinar series

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Particles I Webinar: Indoor Concentrations of Outdoor Air Pollution

Join the ROCIS initiative (Reducing Outdoor Contaminants in Indoor Spaces) for this two-part webinar on indoor air quality.  Join us for one or both of the webinar sessions.

Register here for the Particles I Webinar!  The Particles II Webinar will be on Tuesday, November 25 from 2:00 – 3:30.  Click here to register for the Particles II Webinar.


How much of the particulate matter in outdoor air gets inside?  Are there inexpensive ways to predict indoor concentrations of outdoor particle pollution based on simple house characteristics and building operation? Brent Stephens will discuss his work on pathways that allow outdoor particulate matter to infiltrate into living spaces. He has investigated the link between building envelope airtightness and outdoor particle penetration. Participants will gain a better understanding of variables and the magnitude of their impact. These variables include: outdoor pollutant concentrations, building envelope characteristics, house tightness, pressure effects, filtration, and deposition.


  1. Identify why outdoor particulate matter is of concern to indoor air quality and health impact
  2. Identify factors that impact the movement and exposure of occupants in indoor environments to outdoor particles
  3. Cite limitations of this study and our understanding of indoor concentrations of outdoor pollutants
  4. List three mitigation strategies that may be deployed with the intent of reducing indoor particle loads from outdoor pollution sources

PRESENTER: Brent Stephens, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering and Director of The Built Environment Research Group at Illinois Institute of Technology.

Brent has a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering and an M.S.E. in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering, both from the University of Texas at Austin. He and members of his Built Environment Research Group (BERG) at IIT (www.built-envi.com) conduct research on the intersections of energy and air quality in the built environment, primarily with field measurements in and around buildings. Their work continues to advance building science methods for assessing energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and environmental exposures within buildings.

RESPONDENT: Don Fugler, ROCIS Principal Investigator, Residential Focus, Ottawa, Ontario.

Don spent 25 years conducting research projects for the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation(CMHC), in the areas of residential energy use, ventilation, and indoor air quality. Between 1985 and 2010, he managed over 100 research projects. Since 2011, Don’s consulting work has addressed indoor air quality and energy issues for federal departments, NGOs, and individuals. He taught part of the IAQ course for Healthy Indoor Air Partnership training for HVAC and environmental professionals, and is continuing work on CSA standard committee F300 (depressurization issues), and CGSB (radon).

Thanks to The Heinz Endowments for its support of the ROCIS initiative, Reducing Outdoor Contaminants in Indoor Spaces, and this webinar series.

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