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Indoor air quality: results from EU research projects

Results from two EU funded research projects (HealthVent, SINPHONIE) shed light on the neglected policy issue of indoor air quality. Europeans spend the majority of their time indoors, and many EU policies influence the quality of the air we breathe inside. During the 2013 Year of Air, HEAL works to build support for an EU strategy to ensure clean air everywhere.

Article: Poor indoor air quality (IAQ) is of particular concern for sensitive groups such as children or people with respiratory disease.

The HealthVent project, which began in 2010, has developed health-based ventilation guidelines to help protect people in places like schools, nurseries, offices and homes against the health problems caused by poor indoor air quality and to encourage energy to be used efficiently. The results were recently presented at an event in the European Parliament, hosted by MEP Catherine Stihler.

The participants at the event agreed that coordinated actions should be launched towards both outdoor and indoor air on the principle that it is the “same air” that affects human health. The HealthVent guidelines must be the starting point for further initiatives aimed at integrating health evidence in all existing and future policies on indoor air quality.

HEAL’s Deputy Director Anne Stauffer spoke on the first panel focused on the impacts on clean air policies. She urged members of the European Parliament to include an EU strategy on indoor air quality in the proposal on the 7th EU Environmental Action Programme. The full report of the event is available for download here.

Later this month, the results of the SINPHONIE project on indoor air quality in schools will also be launched in Brussels. SINPHONIE conducted the largest assessment to date on the air pollution situation in Europe’s schools, with thirty-eight environment and health institutions from 25 countries participating.

At the event on 23 April, participants will discuss recommendations on European guidelines for healthy environments within European schools.

HEAL’s Deputy Director Anne Stauffer will be participating at this event. As part of the project, informational brochures for school staff and parents, and children, have been developed in twenty languages, which can be downloaded from the website http://www.sinphonie.eu/publications

To register please confirm your attendance by 12 April to Coordination_Sinphonie@rec.org

Last updated on 10 April 2013

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The Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) is a leading European not-for-profit organisation addressing how the environment affects health in the European Union (EU). We demonstrate how policy changes can help protect health and enhance people’s quality of life. Read more »

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