BUILDING CHECK UP
Carry out a building check (home or work environment) to see if it is sufficiently healthy. We can start with a simple visual analysis, but that will have to be done very carefully, looking everywhere, even in the most unlikely spaces. What are we looking for? Let’s start with molds. Find out what they are
“Sick building syndrome (SBS) definition is used to describe health problems found in the inhabitants of certain buildings. Since no specific diseases are found in patients, these disorders appear to be linked to the healthiness and comfort of the buildings in question ”. February 1991, periodical distributed by the EPA, the Environmental Protection Agency, the agency that carries out the functions of the Federal Environment MInistry, began this way by defining Sick Building Syndrome.
Although in reality it is not the building itself that is sick, but those who occupy it.
However, within the article, the EPA referred to a report by the WHO (World Health Organization) of 1984. In that document, the WHO noted that 30% of newly constructed or recently renovated buildings could be the subject of a complaint by the occupants for the poor quality of the air inside them (I.A.Q. Indoor Air Quality).
Subsequently, the EPA article formulated the distinction between SBS and BRI. Americans like abbreviations, initials and acronyms very much. SBS is Sick Building Syndrome, while BRI stands for Building Related Illness, or health disturbances of the occupants directly attributable to the poor quality of the air in the building in which they live or otherwise spend much of their time (workplaces).
The 2020 package is a set of binding norms aimed at ensuring that the EU achieves its climate and energy targets by 2020. The package defines three main objectives:
20% cut in greenhouse gas emissions (compared to 1990 levels)
20% of energy requirement derived from renewable sources
20% improvement in energy efficiency.
Direttiva UE 2020:
CHRONIC RESPIRATORY DISEASES
Multiple chemical sensitivity syndrome (MCS) or environmental idiopathic chemical intolerance (IIAAC) is a chronic disorder, sensitivity to chemical exposure at lower levels than those generally tolerated by other individuals, in the absence of functional tests capable of explaining signs and symptoms.
Building-related illness (BRI)
Illnesess related to buildings,or building related illnesses (BRI) include specific pathological patterns, characterized by a specific aetiology (biological or physical or chemical agent). Building-related illness (BRI) or diseases directly related to the building in which one resides, usually involve a limited proportion of the occupants of a particular building.
The disease develops as an inflammatory reaction due to the presence of an allergen in the bronchioles and alveoli. It occurs in closed environments where ventilation systems are contaminated by agents such as protozoa, fungi and bacteria. Exposure to wood dusts, for example, may be responsible for the toxic organic dust syndrome (ODTS).
The central vacuum system consists of a central vacuum unit located in service rooms, connected by a pipe network under the floor to a series of suction inlets located inside the house.
The class of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or VOCs (from the English Volatile Organic Compounds), includes different chemical compounds formed by molecules with different functional groups, having different physical and chemical behaviors, but characterized by a certain volatility.
Damage caused by VOCS:
Irritation to eyes, nose and throat
And in a more serious condition:
To the liver
To the kidneys
To the nervous system, etc.
Are schools healthy?
Children are particularly susceptible to the effect of indoor pollutants. The presence of numerous pollutants found in hot-humid climate of homes which promote the growth of mites and fungi in domestic dust, has contributed to the increase in the incidence and prevalence of chronic respiratory diseases, asthma and allergies in childhood. Read more
Numbers and statistics
It is estimated that in Europe, indoor pollution is responsible for 4.6% of all deaths and 31% of disabilities DALY (Disability Adjusted Life Years) in children from 0 to 4 years of age. Faced with the increased susceptibility of children to indoor exposure in schools and at home (perceived as among the safest environments), the air in living environments where they spend most time, is often contaminated by significant levels of pollutants, with serious health risks. Read…
Do we live in a healthy environment?
Parallel to the growing desire to improve the quality of life and environmental sustainability of buildings, the problem of improving air quality in the environments in which we live has arisen, given that western people now spend about 90% of their time inside a building, be it your own home, school or workplace.
Most of the existing buildings harbor and release pollutants into the environment. And we’re not only talking about the combustive gases needed for heating. The toxins are also present in the walls and objects.
In fact, in addition to so-called outdoor pollution, which the European Union is trying to remedy with the 2020 package, there is also indoor pollution (of indoor environments) in homes, offices, schools, shops and shopping centers. Read…