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Sick Building Syndrome

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Toluwanimi Obiwole

on 5 December 2013

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Transcript of Sick Building Syndrome

legal repercussions?
DATE: 12/5/2013
CREATED BY: Hanadi Salamah, Peter Rankin, Fatmah Kandari, Toluwanimi Obiwole
What is Sick Building Syndrome?
Majority of specific legislation in the US regarding indoor air quality is defined by OSHA
Individual State Standards :
New Jersey
All choose to enforce different indoor air quality policies.
green design acts as an extremely beneficial form of SBS prevention
What is Green Building?
Design & Construction
Examples of SBS
The 19-story Saint John's House in Liverpool
Diagnosed with sick building syndrome after half the 2,000 Inland Revenue workers there suffered influenza-like symptoms
Brought down by explosives
A new £14-m St John's House was built next to the old building.
SBS is completely preventable
taking the steps to prevent SBS, promotes environmental responsibility, and better building productivity.
"Health and Comfort in Offices"- Phil Jones 1995
"Sick Building Syndrome: A Review of the Evidence on Causes and Solutions" - G J Raw
what happens after the building is already sick?
Walk-through Inspection
Four basic factors that influence indoor air quality:
The occupants
The HVAC system
Possible pollutant pathways
Possible contaminant sources
Walk-through Preparation
Documenting information about history of the building and complaints
Identifying known HVAC zones and complaint areas
Notifying occupants of the upcoming investigation
Identifying key individuals needed for information and access
Investigation: Procedures/Protocol
Goal: identify and solve indoor air quality complaints in a way that prevents them from recurring and which avoids the creation of other problems
Alleviation of Sick Building Syndrome
How much do you think Sick Building Syndrome costs businesses annually??
a. $6M
b. $600M
c. $1Bn
d. $60Bn
e. $100Bn

(US EPA estimate)

different types of bacteria, VOC'S (formaldehyde), Carbon Monoxide, Carbon Dioxide, Pesticides, Asbestos, molds.
VOCs present
noise pollution
muscle aches
fever and chills
dizziness and nausea
depression and stress
lack of communication
poor productivity
OSHA Standards
however, contractors have found a way to mitigate risks wherever they are by considering the risk of SBS during the life cycle of the building.
Employers are required to follow the General Duty Clause
requires them to provide workers with a safe workplace that does not have any known hazards that cause or are likely to cause death or serious injury
re-evaluation of HVAC systems and removal of air pollutants
aesthetics must be comforting (no jarring colors, odors, etc.)
balance of natural and electric lighting
Japanese researchers have discovered what they believe is the cure for SBS:
"In a report published in the Royal Society of Chemistry's journal Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, Tatsuma explained that he has developed a photocatalyst made up of two layers - a titanium dioxide underlayer and a nickel hydroxide overlayer - that captures light and stores the energy.
As harmful substances are trapped on the film, the energy oxidises the pollutants and renders them harmless."- The Guardian
certain choices in finishes, and design choice greatly affect the risk of SBS symptoms
If sufficient data is collected
Develop possible explanations for the complaints
Formulate a hypothesis
Test the hypothesis
Solve the problem
Take certain measurements to ensure problems do not reoccur
Pollution Insurance purchased by Contractors and covers against:
mould and mildew
contaminant spills on site
Securing health issues
Enhance the productivity of its occupants
Decreases environmental degradation pollution and waste

Sustainable building materials

Improved environmental management

Natural lighting

Improve air quality and ventilations

Indoor plants


Tate modern gallery
- London

- Munich, Germany

Gherkin building
Full transcript