4 VOCs in the Spotlight Building Product Certifications Formaldehyde Occupational Awareness
PARTICLES The Over-looked Pollutant Most airborne particles microns (μm), – Settle on the FLOOR or – Filtered out by the nose and trachea PM 10 - Particle matter < 10μm inhaled into lungs PM 2.5 – can reach the alveoli of the lungs
Indoor Dust Particles Stay suspended in air Build-up in carpets and furniture Re-suspended by activity such as walking, sitting, vacuuming Pesticides, PAHs, PCBs, PBDEs piggy-back on particles
7 Intrinsic Nature of Buildings Reservoir or Sink Stack Effect 7
8 House Dust Macro-composition Skin flakes (dander) from humans and pets Plant and biological material Tracked-in soil Combustion by products 8 House dust is about 40 wt% organic matter
9 House Dust Contaminants Fate & Transport Hydrophobic - high octanol/water partition coefficient - K ow Larger organic contaminant molecules Less likely to biodegrade More likely to adhere to sediment particles and sediment organic carbon matter Persistent organic contaminants are likely to bioaccumulate (EPA 2000). 9 The Duwamish River Analogy
10 A Multi-element Profile of House Dust in Relation to Exterior Dust and Soils in the City of Ottawa, Canada Science of the Total Environment 2001 Concentration of Metal Contaminants in Indoor Dust
Semi-volatile Compounds Environmental Exposures Diisocyanates - Polyurethane (foam padding) - Bronchial irritation and asthmagen Halogenated flame retardants (PBDEs) - Polyurethane, in furniture, mattresses, plastics (TVs, computers) - Endocrine disruptor Perflurochemicals - Water repellents, stain repellents, non-stick coatings - Endocrine disruptor PAHs - coal, crude oil, gasoline, coal-tar pitch, creosote and asphalt - Cataracts, kidney and liver damage, jaundice, skin irritation and cancer, Endocrine disruptor PCBs - fluorescent light ballasts - Liver, kidney and nervous system, reproductive effects, probable human carcinogen, Endocrine disruptor Pesticides, organochlorines, - Soils, carpet, furniture - (Chlordane - probable human carcinogen, liver and nervous system effects, Endocrine disruptor Phthalates BBP, DBP - PVC Flooring, perfume fixative, “inert” ingredient in pesticides- Endocrine disruptor, suspect correlation with autism
13 CAPE CODE Breast Cancer Study Eleven of 15 Cape towns were found to have breast cancer rates at least 15 % higher than those of the rest of Massachusetts (1993). Environmental Science & Technology, Endocrine Disruptors in the Air and Dust Homes averaged 19 for air 26 for dust silentspring.org
14 POPs found in Cape Cod Study Number of Analytes Found in Household Dust, Air and in Urine (n = 120) Chemical Group DustAirUrine Pesticides Alkyloids77- Phthalates1098 PCBs, PAHs, PBDEs 10 - Parabens (preservative) 33- Other Estrogenic phenols Rudel, Ruthann A; Camann, David E.; Spengler, John D.; Enviorn. Sci. Technol
15 VACUUM CARPETS REDUCE DUST, LEAD, AND DUST MITES MEDIAN SURFACE LOADING ON CARPET CONTAMINANTSTARTFINISH% REDUCTION Fine Dust1.30 g/m g/m291% Lead147 ug/m286 ug/m282% Dust Mites282 ug/m20.28 ug/m290% Reductions required 6 to 45 min/m 2 of vacuuming - John Roberts, 1999 Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology
Microscopic ID Airborne Nonfungal Dust Constituents Residential Buildings descending order N=133 ParticleMedian Level % of Buildings particles/M3 Amorphous45, Crystalline 5, Dander16, Paint spheres/chips Charred wood fragments Starch Paper fibers Tire fragments Manufactured fibers Copyright 2003, Healthy Buildings Inc.
Nonfungal Airborne Dust Constituents continued ParticleMedian Level – p/M3 % of Buildings Cotton fibers2761 Feather barbs2055 Mineral wool3353 Insect hair1746 Paper fragments2041 Algae6040 Soot2735 Pollen1729 Plant fragments1723 Rust fragments2723 Metal fragments1317 Insect frass2715 Dermestid hastiseta1013 Copyright 2003, Healthy Buildings Inc.
Nonfungal Airborne Dust Constituents continued ParticleMedian Level – p/M3 % of Buildings Cenospheres1710 Gypsum20,0007 Hair, nonstriated77 Moth scales107 Spider webs96 Glassy spheres335 Hair204 Mite exuviae132 Wood Fragments501 From Air-O-Cell samples collected in Northwest homes and offices by Healthy Buildings Inc. Lab analysis by Dr. George Muller at GML Labs, Mountlake Terrace, WA Copyright 2003, Healthy Buildings Inc.
Particulate Sample from Spore Trap – Very Dusty Home Dr. George Muller, GML Labs, Mountlake Terrace
Spore Trap Samples Assist in Diagnosis of IAQ Problems High counts of glass fibers – might indicate communication with walls, crawlspace, attic High counts of soot – might indicate communication with built-in garage, faulty furnace, too many candles High counts of crystalline particles indicates foot traffic from outdoors and could indicate lead source High counts of amorphous particles might indicate moisture intrusion, poor housekeeping, and lack of air filtration & ventilation
Spore Trap, Particulate Counter, & Q Trak for CO &CO 2
Control contaminants in Design & Product Selection Construction Operation and maintenance Avoid – omit or remove from the building Isolate or Seal - what you can’t avoid Ventilate - add O 2 and flush pollutants Clean & Filter – clean carpets, filter air Control is the Goal
23 How to Reduce Your Exposure Remove shoes at the door Minimize carpeting or consider replacing it. Vacuum at least 1/wk with a HEPA vacuum (dust mask recommended) Use hot-steam extraction twice yearly Don’t burn firewood – consider switching to a gas or electric insert Don’t burn cigarettes indoors and consider quitting smoking for the health of you and your family Don’t burn candles or incense or if you do, do so infrequently If you have an oil or gas furnace, have it inspected annually Avoid pesticides Don’t use plug-in air fresheners or oil sticks – they contain chemicals that may harm you Use fragrance-free cleaners and use baking soda and vinegar formulations for house cleaning Discard worn or frayed upholstered furniture and cushions Use 3rd party certification for selecting home furnishings and building materials
24 Reduce Exposure Reduce exposure to indoor dust Reduce exposure to combustion by- products Reduce exposure to pesticides Reduce exposure to synthetic fibers Reduce exposure to fragrance
25 Third Party Certification Programs Collaborative for High Performance Schools - adhesives, sealants, concrete sealers, acoustical ceilings, wall panels, wood flooring, composite wood boards, resilient flooring (includes rubber) and carpet FloorScore - resilient flooring Greenguard - for Certification for Children & Schools - furniture & indoor finishes Greenlabel Plus - Carpet & Rug Institute Indoor Advantage Gold - wall coverings, systems furniture, casework, insulation and other non-flooring interior products Greenseal Certified Products - paints & coatings Pharos - membership required, extensive filter system 25
26 Chemical Safety Improvement Act of 2013 “Toxic Right to Know Law” Require Safety Evaluations for All Chemicals Protect Public Health from Unsafe Chemicals Prioritize Chemicals for Review Screen New Chemicals for Safety Secure Necessary Health and Safety Information Promote Innovation and Safer Chemistry Protect Children and Pregnant Women Give States and Municipalities a Say 26
27 Stop Using Humans as Guinea Pigs Apply the Precautionary Principle