April 14, 2014
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's Working Group III, addressing the mitigation of climate change, has issued an executive summary of its Fifth Assessment report. The report updates policymakers on the technical and socio-economic aspects of climate change, including technologies and policies that can reduce impacts.According to its website, "The IPCC Working Group III assesses all... Read more
January 6, 2014
Quantifying the Economic Implications of Indoor Air on Energy Efficiency, Performance, and HealthWilliam Fisk is a senior scientist, mechanical engineer, and leader of the Indoor Environment Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL). During his 33 years at the lab, he has researched the interrelated issues of building energy performance, ventilation, indoor environmental quality (IEQ),... Read more
December 12, 2013
Researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and their colleagues studied the chemical mechanisms that allow photocatalysis to remove pollution from indoor air and urban atmospheres, as well as allow self-cleaning surfaces to work. The basis of the process is a catalyst such as titanium dioxide (TiO2) energized by light. Building materials and coatings with nano-sized... Read more
November 29, 2011
Researchers estimate that those of us in developed countries spend 90 percent of our time indoors, which means that most of the time we are breathing air polluted by emissions from indoor sources. Providing more outdoor air ventilation can improve indoor air quality; however, energy is needed to heat, cool, humidify or dehumidify, and sometimes filter the ventilation air brought indoors from... Read more
November 10, 2011
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory is seeking participants for a study of air quality in California homes. The study is being conducted by scientists in the Environmental Energy Technologies Division of Berkeley Lab. This project is funded by the California Energy Commission and is focused on homes with natural gas appliances. Individuals who are selected to participate and complete the... Read more
October 19, 2011
Current standards for U.S. offices require approximately 8 liters per second (L/s) of outdoor air ventilation per person. Providing twice as much ventilation would reduce sick building syndrome symptoms (SBS) and absences, improve work performance, and provide billions of dollars in annual economic benefits in the U.S., according to a recent study from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory... Read more
June 6, 2011
A paper by William Fisk, Anna Mirer, and Mark Mendell has received a "best paper" award from the editors of the journal Indoor Air.According to the citation, "Quantitative relationship of sick building syndrome symptoms with ventilation rates," was "one of the top papers published in the journal during the years 2008-2010."The authors were honored at one of the plenary sessions of the Indoor Air... Read more
February 16, 2011
The Healthy Zero Energy Buildings (HZEB) website has made its debut.The HZEB research program's goal is to develop the information needed for scientifically-sound commercial building ventilation standards that balance energy efficiency objectives with the need to maintain acceptable indoor air quality.Zero (net) energy buildings have a net energy consumption of zero over a typical year. The... Read more
December 21, 2010
Buildings are responsible for a large fraction of total U.S. energy demand and buildings are replaced slowly. About one third of the U.S. population lives in multifamily buildings. The residents of multifamily buildings often have below-average incomes and they are sometimes exposed to high levels of potentially harmful indoor contaminants. The U.S. is embarking on a program of aggressive energy... Read more
August 23, 2010
Another reason for including asthma on the list of potential health risks posed by secondhand tobacco smoke, especially for non-smokers, has been uncovered. Furthermore, the practice of using ozone to remove the smell of tobacco smoke from indoor environments, including hotel rooms and the interiors of vehicles, is probably a bad idea.... Read more
February 23, 2010
Nicotine in third-hand smoke, the residue from tobacco smoke that clings to virtually all surfaces long after a cigarette has been extinguished, reacts with the common indoor air pollutant nitrous acid to produce dangerous carcinogens. This new potential health hazard was revealed in a multi-institutional study led by researchers with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab).... Read more
February 23, 2009
Research conducted at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory suggests that operating buildings more energy efficiently could have benefits for the health of occupants and, surprisingly, also for their comfort.The researchers, Mark Mendell and Anna Mirer of Berkeley Lab's Environmental Energy Technologies Division, analyzed data collected from 95 air-conditioned office... Read more