Compliance - Indoor Air Quality

Feb 11, 2020
We spend much of our time indoors, whether it be in the workplace or our homes. During this time, we don’t know what pollutants we are being exposed to.

While there’s not a lot we can do about the building materials used in the office spaces we work in, our homes are another story. That’s one space we have some control over.

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It starts with what materials and furnishings we choose when we build or renovate. With the right knowledge, we have the power to make wise choices and select products that won’t harm our health.

WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT INDOOR AIR QUALITY?

The problem with most harmful toxins is we can’t see them.

We love design magazines. We look inside the pages and see beautifully styled rooms. They appear comfortable, clean and fresh. We wish we lived in them. We try to emulate them. But pictures don’t show the pollutants that may be hiding in household furnishings.

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Sofas sprayed with hazardous fabric protectors, curtains treated with toxic fire retardants, air fresheners dispensing toxic microparticles (that can be inhaled deep into the lungs), paints and wood finishes containing carcinogens, and the unknown effects of the unknown chemicals created when all these individual toxins combine, are just some of the factors that make the indoors more perilous than we might imagine.

We also have to contend with microorganisms. Bacteria, pollens and dust particles in our homes can be hazardous for those who suffer hay fever, allergies or asthma. Plus, certain moulds have been found to cause respiratory and neurological damage.

The fact we don’t air out our homes nearly enough adds to the magnitude of pollutants. In the outdoors, natural or chemical pollutants can dissipate more easily, or dry up. Indoors, they can be trapped and can linger. Some pollutants even change form and become more toxic when they warm up, such as when the sun shines onto chemically treated furnishings.
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