23 March 2017 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal
Productivity improvements of 8-11 per cent are not uncommon as a result of better air quality, delegates at yesterday's Workplace Trends conference heard.
Sarah Welton, vice-president of the International WELL Building Standard Institute, told attendees that according to World Green Building Council and Environmental Protection Agency research concentrations of some pollutant indicators can be two to five times higher indoors compared with outdoors.
Indoor air quality concerns include inadequate ventilation, contamination from inside the building, contamination from outside the building, microbial contamination, contamination from the building fabric while a small percentage is from unknown sources.
She added that social and physical environment was "the largest determinant of your health" more than genetics, medical care and lifestyle/health behaviours.
Weldon told delegates: "We've forgotten that we primarily construct buildings to protect and support our health."
The WELL Building standard certification introduced in 2014 is based on creating improvements for employees in buildings in the areas of air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind.
In the UK 14 projects have WELL certification compared with other European countries like France, which has 26; Spain, which has five; Netherlands and Sweden, which have four each; and Ireland and Slovakia, which have two each.