Cinnaminson, NJ, November 13th, 2014
In October, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released new guidance to help school districts protect indoor air quality while increasing energy efficiency during school renovations. The practices outlined in the new guidance support schools as healthy, energy-efficient buildings that play a significant role in local communities.
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According to the EPA, nearly 55 million elementary and secondary students occupy our schools, as well as 7 million teachers, faculty and staff. In addition, many communities use school buildings after regular school hours as after-care facilities, recreation centers, meeting places and emergency shelters during natural disasters.
Energy management and protecting a school’s indoor air quality are important considerations for school facility management during energy upgrades and retrofits. Whenever there are renovation and construction activities taking place, these events can create dust, introduce new contaminants and contaminant pathways, create or aggravate moisture problems, and result in inadequate ventilation in occupied spaces. EPA’s Energy Savings Plus Health: Indoor Air Quality Guidelines for School Building Upgrades offers opportunities to prevent and control these potentially harmful conditions.
“School environments need to be protected year-round, but this is especially true during renovations,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Construction and demolition activities can aerosolize or introduce many different pollutants that can be found in schools. These range from mold, bacteria and allergens to asbestos, lead, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and even PCBs. At EMSL, we offer a wide range of environmental testing services and sampling supplies to identify these microbial and chemical contaminants to not only protect students and faculty, but to also protect the workers involved in the renovation activities.”
EMSL recently sponsored an educational video about IAQ in schools. It can be seen at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ktQGXR5xPA.
To learn more about lead or other environmental testing services, please visit info@EMSL.com, call (800) 220-3675 or email www.EMSL.com.
EMSL Analytical is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of environmental, indoor air quality (IAQ) and materials testing services and products to professionals and the general public. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.