The report summarizes information on indoor pollution by nitrogen dioxide (NO2) In European countries participating in the concerted action "Indoor Air Quality and Its Impact on Man" (COST project 61 3). Major scope of the report IS to give concise information to people involved In research planning, policy making and regulatory activities and to help to identify a European view of the issue. The summary includes a short review of health effects of NO2 and of existing air quality guidelines and standards.
Considering the likelihood of contributions of various indoor air pollutants to detrimental health effects, the Community-COST Concertation Committee of the Concerted Action "Indoor Air Quality and its lmpact on Man" (COST Project 61 3) decided that indoor radon is a well studied indoor pollutant both in terms of occurring concentrations and expected adverse health effects. In July 1985 the Article 31 Euratom Treaty Group of Experts set up a Working Party to study and report on this matter.
It is only fairly recently that scientific and public concerns have focused on the probable health risk that the presence of air pollutants can cause in residential or non-industrial buildings. Several reasons have contributed to the deterioration of indoor air quality (IAQ) including some aspects of trends in the construction sector, most important of which are the design of buildings with increased air tightness for the sake of energy conservation but also the use of innovative building materials based on complex synthetic chemical substances.
The LARES Housing and Health survey conducted in representative samples of eightEuropean towns provides substantial data from 3,373 households about housingconditions and the health of 8,519 residents. We assessed the relation between residentialthermal comfort, weather-tightness, ventilation, mould or dampness and some commondiseases and symptoms. We observed that reporting bad health was significantlyassociated with temperature, weather-tightness and mould or dampness problems.Asthma was significantly linked with mould or dampness, temperature, and ventilationproblems.
The epidemiological research on indoor environments in homes and health has been reviewed.Science has mainly been about health effects like asthma/allergies and exposures such as VOCs,mould and dampness. So far there are few conclusive findings. Dampness, pets, mites, dampness,ETS, a low ventilation rate, and some phthalates are risk factors for asthma and allergies. There is alarge need of studies of other health effects, and other exposures, especially regarding new frequentlyused chemicals.
In North America, there are ~140 million homes and 4 million public buildings. More than one fifth of theenergy use in Canada is used to condition air whether from the cold in much of Canada or providecooling and heating where summers are hot and humid and winters are cold. To reduce greenhousegases and improve housing affordability, this energy use needs to be reduced. In 1981, the Federal andProvincial governments understood that science was needed to inform building codes in relation tooccupant health.
For that study the measurement of parameters in the indoor environment were carried out with a simultaneous survey with questions dealing with elements of the indoor environment, health status and health problems. That study reveals a significant role for the psychological state and psychological factors of the respondents of natural ventilation when sujectively describing the indoor environment.
For that study an experiment was conducted during 2 months, in a call center : each week 26 operators returned questionnaires recording their environmental perceptions and sick building syndrome symptoms. In parallel, the recording of their average talk-time was monitored every 30 minutes.The results of that study confirm that increasing outdoor air supply rates and replacing used filters with new ones has a positive effect on health, comfort and productivity of workers.
The international center for indoor environment and energy, at the Technical University of Denmark has at its disposal 3 old and 9 new spaces for studying indoor environments and their incidence on human comfort, health, productivity at moderate energy demands. This paper describes those climate chambers, new laboratory and offices used for field experiments.
That research is based on the assumption that there are differences among normal subjects as to their vulnerability to stress-related symptoms to health/illnessThe study aims at increasing the understanding of SBS complaints in relation to personality factors.A relationship between personality characteristics and health-related behaviors, and between personality characteristics and perceived health is demonstrated.