Survey Finds Growing Health Concern Over Air Quality

Indoor air quality is expected to become an even more\r\nsignificant issue in the years ahead, according to a survey released\r\nby the International Center for Toxicology and Medicine.

Indoor air quality (IAQ) is expected to become an even more significant issue in the years ahead, according to a survey released by the International Center for Toxicology and Medicine.

Ronald E. Gots, managing principal of the International Center for Toxicology and Medicine, said that a survey his firm commissioned late last year found that, by a 71 percent to 16 percent majority, public sector officials with responsibility for overseeing environmental health risks that may affect schools, courthouses, libraries and other public buildings, believe IAQ is likely to become a much more significant issue in the near future.

The survey was based on 100 detailed telephone interviews conducted in November and December in an effort to better track the IAQ issue. The professionals surveyed were drawn from the ranks of the Public Risk Management Association.

Molds were the most frequently mentioned cause of IAQ, commanding a 61 percent response rate from those who had reported such problems.

Gots also reported that the officials surveyed said they believe IAQ is likely to become an even more challenging issue because concerns are often based on building occupants'' perceptions of problems rather than the problem that has been diagnosed.

Survey respondents also were found to agree by a 49 percent to 33 percent margin that growing public and regulatory concern about IAQ will likely lead to significant changes in building design and construction in the next five years.

by Melissa Martin

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