Special Issue "Indoor Air Quality and Health Outcomes in Energy-Efficient Buildings"
A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Health".
Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2021.
Improving the energy efficiency of buildings is an important approach to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, as energy consumed by buildings contributes 20–40% of emissions and total energy consumption around the world. End-use energy expenditures were identified, and over half of them were attributable to heating, ventilating, and cooling. The environmental impact of these energy expenditures has been well documented; greenhouse gases emitted during power production are associated with climate change impacts including rising sea level, extreme temperatures, and more frequent weather events. Emissions of sulfur dioxide (SO2) contribute to acid rain, which can damage sensitive ecosystems. More important, however, are the downstream human health effects related to these environmental impacts. Elevated temperatures and droughts will increase the likelihood of heat-related illness and mortality. Extreme weather effects also pose health and economic risks, especially in developing regions. Emissions from power plants also have several direct health effects: exposure to particulate matter, in particular SO2, increases the risk of respiratory and cardiovascular disease, and nitrogen oxides (NOx) cause airway inflammation and respiratory symptoms, especially in asthmatics.
Consequently, different approaches for designing energy-efficient buildings have been suggested over the previous decades. Most of them have the following aspects in common:
- A tightly sealed thermal envelope,
- Controlled ventilation,
- High-efficiency heating and cooling systems, and
- Energy-efficient doors, windows, appliances, and home electronics.
However, buildings managers are incentivized to reduce costs, which is often achieved by reducing ventilation rates. Unfortunately, similar incentives are not set for optimizing the health performance of buildings as the impact on occupant health is poorly understood.
The goal of this Special Issue is to regroup data on the indoor air quality and health outcomes in energy-efficient buildings in order to propose targeted preventive measures.
Studies and reviews reporting the following are welcome:
- A correlation between characteristics of energy-efficient buildings—homes or offices—and pollutants detected in the aerosols;
- The satisfaction and health of inhabitants/workers in energy-efficient buildings—homes or offices;
- The modelling of exposure in energy-efficient buildings—homes or offices.
The keywords listed below provide an outline of some of the possible areas of interest.
Dr. Hélène Niculita-Hirzel
Manuscript Submission Information
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- Ambient air pollution
- Green buildings
- Energy and environmental costs
- Public Health
- Bioaerosols and their toxins
- Indoor particles matter (PM2.5, PM10)
- Physical and chemical pollutants (e.g., radon, formaldehyde, VOCs, carbon monoxide (CO); Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2))
- Emerging indoor pollutants