Healthier Buildings, Healthier People

of 28 /28
Healthier Buildings, Healthier People Indoor Environments Division

Embed Size (px)


Indoor Environments Division. Healthier Buildings, Healthier People . Indoor Environments Division: Mission. Protecting the public’s health by promoting healthy environments in buildings where we live, learn and work. Major Indoor Air Activities. IAP HH protocols Asthma network - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Transcript of Healthier Buildings, Healthier People

Page 1: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People

Healthier Buildings, Healthier People

Indoor Environments Division

Page 2: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Indoor Environments Division: Mission

Protecting the public’s health by promoting healthy environments

in buildings where we live, learn and work.

Page 3: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Major Indoor Air Activities

• IAP• HH protocols• Asthma network• Asthma disparities• Rn action plan

International Partnership for Clean Indoor Air (PCIA)

Page 4: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Cross-Cutting Themes of Indoor Environments Division’s Programs

• Ambitious goal-oriented campaigns• Targeted to children’s health

–Partnerships with Federal Agencies, State and Local Governments, Tribes, NGOs

• Significant focus on Environmental Justice Communities

• Adaptations to Climate Change

Page 5: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People

Indoor Air

Page 6: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Why Indoor Air?• Significant Risks

– Chemicals (i.e.. formaldehyde, PCBs, lead), Pesticides, Biologicals (i.e.. mold)– Consumer products, furniture, building materials– Indoor Radon

• High Exposure– Concentrations usually 2-5x higher than outdoors – Up to 90% of time spent indoors (especially for children/seniors)

• High Economic Costs– $150 - $200B per year in lost work/school hours

• Unique Role– EPA is the ONLY organization dealing with environmental issues indoors in a holistic way, seeking to

involve all EPA offices and consider all cross-media impacts: Regions play an important role

• Focus on Tribal, Children’s Health, and Environmental Justice Issues– Asthma disparities are greater in these groups– Ability to pay for low income households to fix indoor air problems (radon)

Page 7: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


What Does the Indoor Air Program Do ? • Promoting Healthy Buildings and People

– Homes• Indoor airPLUS for new homes – specifications to build new homes in a safe and healthy


• Healthy Indoor Environment Protocols for Existing Homes

• Develop and Integrate IAQ policies, protocols and specifications into existing building related initiatives (Energy Efficiency, Green Buildings, DOE, HUD)

• Emphasis areas of Asthma, Radon, Healthy Homes

– Schools - • Leader in getting schools to develop and integrate effective Indoor air quality management


– Other Building Types

Page 8: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


What Does the Indoor Air Program Do? Emphasis within those Buildings:

• Radon– Lead Interagency Radon Ramp-up efforts

– Coordinate State Indoor Radon Grant (SIRG) distribution to the State Radon Programs

– Estimated about 900 Lives Saved Annually, 1M of 7-8M “High” Homes Fixed

• Asthma – Lead Children’s Health Taskforce on asthma disparities

– 4M people taking essential actions, Avoid 50,000+ ER visits annually, 27% of health plans support environmental management

Page 9: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Healthy Buildings (Homes, Schools & Workplaces) Goals through Holistic approach to Healthy Indoor Air Quality:

Achieve major health gains and improve professional education Foster a revolution in the design of new and renovated buildings Stimulate nationwide action to enhance health in existing structures Create and use innovative products, materials and technologies Promote health conscious individual behavior and consumer

awareness Broad strategies and potential actions

Leveraging action through partnerships Encouraging new technologies Market incentives Research and development Legislation Policy and Standards Education and Information

Page 10: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People



Burden –more than 22M, including 6.8M kids: 2M ER visits and 13M missed school days annually Significant disparities/underserved population

Environmental triggers –major risk factors: ETS, mold, dust mites, pets, pests, NO2

outdoor ozone and PM

Page 11: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People



• Multi-faceted program:– Public Service Advertising Campaigns– Health care / Health plan partnerships– Communities in Action – network of community-based programs and NGOs– Partnership with CDC

• Program Results:– 4M people taking essential actions– Avoid 50,000+ ER visits annually– 400+ community-based programs in Network– 27% of health plans support environmental management– 2000+ health care professionals trained annually

Page 12: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Asthma DisparitiesGOALS:• Target effective Public Health Practice and Interventions towards

disproportionately impacted populations• Advance Policy initiatives to improve services for underserved

populations.• Execute a collaborative Research Agenda to improve our

understanding of asthma onset prevention actions and reduce poor asthma health outcomes in disproportionately at-risk populations.

Page 13: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Radon• About 21,000 Lung Cancer Deaths/Year

– 13% of All U.S. Lung Cancer Deaths– Leading Cause Among Non-Smokers

• 1 in 15 Homes above Action Level• Two Ways to Achieve Risk Reduction

– Build New Homes Radon-Resistant• $80K Cost/Life

– Mitigate Existing Homes• $400K Cost/Life

Page 14: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Notable Progress - Huge Risk Gap

• 2 Million Homes Now Radon Resistant• 1 Million Homes Have Been Mitigated• Saving 800 Lives Annually• Creative EPA Outreach Fights Indifference• Industry and States Marginal but Motivated

1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009

6,460 6,560 6,655 6,645 6,728 6,803 6,8717,1457,1127,0867,0656,931 7,0286,986

340 340 345 355 372 397 429855788714635469 572514

Homes Mitigated Compared to Homes at or Above the Action Level (000)

Homes w/an Operating Mitigation System High Radon Homes (>4pCi/L)

Page 15: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Still a Long Way to Go• Federal Radon Action Plan-Working with other Federal Agencies

at a High Level to address Radon.• Still the Leading environmental cause of cancer mortality• After 25 years the problem is worse than when we started• The poor face significant challenges addressing Radon - the 2nd

leading cause of lung cancer

Page 16: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Indoor airPLUS• Voluntary partnership with building industry to

promote healthier homes• Co-labeled with ENERGY STAR and Green

Programs• Science-based construction specifications address

asthma triggers, radon, mold, chemicals• 300 partners in 50 states since launch in April 2009

“Our two oldest children haven’t had to take breathing treatments since we moved in July of last year. It’s a great feeling not hearing them cough at night.“ Indoor airPLUS homebuyer testimonial

Quality Built HomesHealthy Home Testing, LLC

4 / 19 / 2009

Page 17: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People



Moisture Control +

Pest Barriers+

Combustion Systems+Ventilation & Filtration+

Radon Control+

What’s inside Indoor airPLUS?

Page 18: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Healthy Buildings Focus: IAQ management in buildings, mold and moisture control, pollutants

and sources

Key player in expanding Green Building movement Building Sector impacts include 39% of energy use, 69% of electricity

use, 38% of CO2 emissions

EPA tools and guidance include:

Commercial & Institutional buildings - Upcoming guidance for moisture control in commercial buildings- Indoor Air Quality Guide: Best Practices for Design, Construction, and Commissioning (advanced IAQ design guide with ASHRAE, AIA,


Residential Mold remediation and prevention guidance Flood clean-up guidance Indoor airPLUS technical guidance for builders

Page 19: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Healthy Schools

• In mid-1990s, approximately 50% of schools with problems related to IAQ– Very few with IAQ Management plans

• IAQ Tools for Schools – model for IAQ in schools– Identify and solve existing IAQ problems– Prevent IAQ problems from developing

• Program Results:– 60,000 schools (51% of US Schools) have IAQ Management plans

Page 20: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


If the global climate changes significantly….

…how will it impact buildings and indoor air quality?

Page 21: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Adaptation to Climate Change will Magnify the Importance of Healthy Indoor Environments

Some potential impacts:• Stronger storms, massive property damage, flooding, water

intrusions (increased mold growth)• Heat waves, drought (need for tighter homes)• Increased indoor levels of pollutants (ex. ozone & mold)• Increased levels of pests

Some potential mitigations/ adaptations:• Changing construction practices, alterations to existing

buildings– (ex. Modifications to save energy, additional filtration,

HVAC)• Increased time spent indoors

Page 22: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Indoor Environments Climate Adaptation Strategy

• Communicate: Highlight connections between climate change and IAQ (NAS Report)

• Adapt Existing Guidance: Continue to target guidance to those who need it, resulting in reductions in indoor air contaminants and improvements in public health

• Influence Research: Increase efforts to originate and influence research efforts and guidance development.

Page 23: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


IAQ Impact on Tribes• Lung cancer is the most common type of cancer in 5 of the 6 IHS regions. – Radon is the main cause for non-smokers.– 21,000 lung cancers deaths annually.

• Asthma as one of the top ten causes of death in Indian Country. Asthma affects:– 12% of people living in tribal communities – nearly double the current

national average of 7%.1 – 13.0% of American Indian/Alaska Native children compared to 8.9% of

children in the U.S. 2 1. CDC. Surveillance for asthma---United States, 1980--1999. In: CDC Surveillance Summaries (March 29). MMWR 2002;51(No. SS-1).

2. Asthma Prevalence Among US Children in Underrepresented Minority Populations: American Indian/Alaska Native, Chinese, Filipino, and Asian Indian. Brim, Rudd, Funk, and Callahan. PEDIATRICS: 122(1). July 2008, pp. e217-e222

Page 24: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


IAQ Impact on Tribes


• Combustion products– Carbon Monoxide & Nitrogen Dioxide poisonings & deaths– Soot & particles

• Secondhand Smoke• Mold, Mildew & other Bioaerosols• Chemicals & VOC’s

– Pesticides– Formaldehyde– Lead

Page 25: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


EPA’s Tribal Indoor Air Quality Web site –

Page 26: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Page 27: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Resources & How we can work together• EPA IED Programs

••• •

• Aberdeen Area Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board Asthma Prevention Campaign –

• – • Native AIR program – • –  • Radon Hotline & Services –• Radon Leaders Saving Lives –

Page 28: Healthier Buildings, Healthier People


Indoor Environments DivisionHealthier Buildings, Healthier People

General IAQ Issues:

Rick White, Deputy Division Director, [email protected]