“See” IAQ Information with CIAQ

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the September 2008 newsletter.

Not many indoor air quality organizations can claim to have been around in 1983. This month’s featured website is for the Federal Interagency Committee on Indoor Air Quality, otherwise known as the CIAQ. The organization is designed to facilitate the exchange of IAQ information among Federal agencies.

The CIAQ meets three times a year. Meetings are open to the public and typically include a technical presentation. You can attend in person or via webinar.

So why is this the website of the month? The site allows you to view meeting minutes that are chalk full of industry updates. You can also view handouts of the last meeting’s presentation.

I would strongly suggest you add your email to the CIAQ Listserve. You will get important industry updates and be notified about upcoming meetings.

The next meeting is October 15th at 1pm Eastern. Ed Light, CIH will be speaking on Building Air Quality- An Update. Webinar access is limited so sign up today.

To visit the homepage, click CIAQ.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

Going Green

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the November 2008 newsletter.

This month’s featured website is special, because I personally designed it! This month we are deviating a bit from the IAQ theme and talking about all things green.

I’ve personally been trying to cut my energy consumption, waste generation and water usage. Over a year ago I came up with the idea of creating a website to help people with similar goals to share information. Today I’m announcing I have finally finished and am launching the beta version of www.seeimgreen.com.

On the website, you can put a pushpin over your house and feature your green activities and lifestyle. You can also offer some simple advice to neighbors on how they can better care for the environment. Click on others’ pushpins to read about what they are doing and join the discussion boards where questions can be asked and answered.

I hope you’ll find my website to be a valuable resource. Please take 5 minutes to register on the site by clicking the large “Add Me” button. The website is meant for all people, not just “environmentalists”, so be sure to pass it on to friends and colleagues. Please send me any feedback on how I can improve the site!

To visit See I’m Green, click www.seeimgreen.com.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

IE Connections Now Online

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the January 2009 newsletter.

In the past we have featured the website for Indoor Environment Connections. But it just got better. So much so that we decided to feature them again as the IAQ Website of the Month.

Although many of you already receive this publication, it is now free to everyone else. A full PDF version of the publication is available on their homepage. You may find the PDF version preferable because you can search for specific terms and keep unlimited editions on your computer. If you’re like me, you may also appreciate cutting down on your carbon footprint.

If you are not already familiar with IE Connections, it is a monthly newspaper that keeps you up to date on emerging standards and technology in the IAQ field. Most articles have a more casual writing style when compared to other industry publications like Indoor Air. My favorite feature of the publication is the Ask Dr. Harriet Burge section where she fields submitted questions.

To visit this months featured website, click IE Connections.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

High-CARB Learning

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the March 2009 newsletter.

When people I meet discover that I’m an indoor air quality consultant, they love to tell me about their new air cleaner. I typically bore them with something technical about efficiency or ozone, then insult their expensive new purchase. As you can guess, I’m not a big hit at parties.

Over the past few years, there has been increased concern over the emission of harmful ozone from air cleaners. This month’s featured website provides standards for air cleaners and a list of units that have been certified to meet those standards. Learn more about air cleaner regulations on the website for the California Air Resources Board (CARB).

CARB carries out a non-regulatory IAQ program that includes sponsored research, exposure assessment, development of indoor air quality guidelines, and public education and outreach.

CARB has two great comprehensive papers that you should download and keep in your technical library. The first is Indoor Air Pollution in California, a great general overview of the topic of indoor air quality. The second is Indoor Air Chemistry, which delves into the impact that household cleaners have on indoor air quality.

Click any of the links above to go to those specific sections. Otherwise, click California Air Resources Board to visit CARB’s main indoor air quality page.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

Learn more about indoor air quality by taking one of the indoor air nerd’s Certified Indoor Environmentalist courses.

Humidity Explained

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the April 2009 newsletter.

Humidity is pretty simple, right? Wrong. There are several misconceptions that this month’s featured website tackles head on.

It is critical for indoor environmental professionals to understand humidity. It affects occupant comfort and plays a critical role in the growth of mold and dust mites. Central to an understanding of humidity are the concepts of relative humidity and dew point.

This month’s website was developed by Steve Horstmeyer, a meteorologist in Cincinnati (pictured). I think he does a wonderful job of explaining the complexities of humidity in layman’s terms.

Have you ever talked about air “holding” water vapor? You’ll soon learn to strike that from your vocabulary. Can you explain why evaporation and condensation occurs? I’m guessing you’ll change your answer after reading through the website.

To visit this month’s featured website, click Humidity by Steve Horstmeyer. A special thanks to one of our students, Eric Barker, for submitting this website.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

Search Free Journal Articles

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the May 2009 newsletter.

We care about the indoor environment because it impacts our health. How it exactly affects human health is explored widely by research published in journals.

There are several websites that let you search journal articles. This month’s featured website is special because it searches free journal articles.

PubMed Central is a free digital archive of full-text journal articles that is maintained by the U.S. National Institutes of Health. According to their website, “PubMed Central aims to fill the role of a world class library in the digital age… The value of PubMed Central, in addition to its role as an archive, lies in what can be done when data from diverse sources is stored in a common format in a single repository.”

A quick search for “indoor air quality” yields 441 full articles coming from medical association journals, public health journals and more. Some of the journal articles provide very basic information on indoor air quality (click to read example) and others provide advanced information like this article on controlling ashtma triggers with air cleaners.

To visit this month’s featured website, click PubMed Central.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

EPA’s Inspection Checklist for Asthma

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the June 2009 newsletter.

I’m sure you know someone that suffers from asthma. A key to managing asthma is curtailing exposures to triggers such as dust mites and environmental tobacco smoke.

The Environmental Protection Agency has a great list of publications related to asthma. This month’s featured website is the EPA’s Asthma Publications page.

My favorite publication on the page is the Asthma Home Environment Checklist. This is a 7-page, simplified checklist for performing a home asthma assessment. If you perform residential indoor air quality assessments, you should incorporate these checklist items into your field work.

If you would like more basic information regarding asthma, there is a 13 minute video that provides a good summary. You should also check out the 2-page Asthma Fact Sheet that was updated earlier this year. In it you’ll learn that about 23 million people, including 6.8 million children, have asthma in the US.

To visit this month’s featured website, click EPA’s Asthma Publications.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

IAQ Resources from TSI

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the July 2009 newsletter.

I admit it, I love gadgets. Maybe I enjoy IAQ work because it involves so many gadgets. This month we are featuring the technical resources freely available on the website of TSI Incorporated, a company that manufactures IAQ equipment.

I would like to highlight 5 documents on the TSI website that cover information every IAQ consultant should know:

IAQ Handbook (18 pages)
HVAC Assessment Handbook (22 pages)
Mechanisms of Filtration (4 pages)
Particle Measurement (4 pages)
Particle Sizes (1 page chart)

As would be expected, TSI’s equipment is highlighted in these 5 documents, but it doesn’t take away from the information presented. There are more than 100 other documents on their site, mostly manuals, case studies, and application notes related to their specific equipment.

To visit a full list of articles related to IAQ on TSI’s website, click on the following link: TSI’s IAQ Documents. Once there, click on “Related Documents” on the left hand side.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

Radon Resources

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the August 2009 newsletter.

The 2009 International Radon Symposium will be held in St. Louis September 20-23. But did you know that most research papers presented at past Symposia are provided for free at the website for the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (AARST)?

Past research papers are all conveniently located on one page of the AARST website. To give you a sense of scale, I stopped counting at 300 research papers listed on the site. Here are a few that I found interesting:

To view all the past technical and research papers, click on the following link: AARST Radon Research Papers. The Google search bar at the top of the page allows you to search the entire database of papers.

While you are at the AARST’s website, you can also download their latest newsletter by visiting Radon Reporter.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.

Across the Pond

Each month we publish a newsletter titled IAQ Website of the Month.  The excerpt below was originally published in the October 2009 newsletter.

Public and private research is being conducted in the United States related to indoor air quality. But are you aware of the activities going on beyond the US borders? I saw a presentation by Dr. Eduardo de Oliveira Fernandes titled, “EU Policies on Indoor Air Quality” at Healthy Buildings 2009 last month.

He spoke about EnVIE, a European Union funded project that coordinated indoor air quality efforts “across the pond”. This month’s featured website is from the EnVIE project.

Although the project is no longer funded, you can still download some good information from their website. I especially enjoyed reading the proceedings from their first conference which took place in 2007. To get a PDF copy of the entire proceedings for free, click this link: 1st EnVIE Conference.

Here are my top three favorite papers in the proceedings:
1. Asthma and allergies: The role of the home environment (Page 81)
2. Transmitted infectious diseases in indoor environment (Page 119)
3. In Focus: Health effects of carbon monoxide intoxication (Page 187)

There is other good information on the website, so look around some. To visit the homepage for this month’s featured website, click: EnVIE. To download the referenced conference proceedings, click: 1st EnVIE Conference.

To subscribe to this newsletter click the following link: IAQ Website of the Month.