Ensuring Indoor Air Quality: Meeting Thresholds for Organic Gases in WELL Certification

Published by firstgreen on

“Air is the invisible elixir of life, and its quality determines our health and wellbeing.” – Unknown.

This quote reflects the importance of air quality in our environments, especially indoors where we spend a considerable portion of our time. With this article, we explore the A01.2 WELL certification credit: Meeting Thresholds for Organic Gases.

The credit focuses on reducing exposure to Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) – a broad range of carbon-based chemicals that are found in many indoor sources and can evaporate into the air we breathe. Exposure to high levels of VOCs can lead to a range of health effects, from eye, nose, and throat irritation to headaches, loss of coordination, and even some forms of cancer.

In the pursuit of ensuring optimum indoor air quality, WELL certification outlines two compliance paths for meeting the thresholds for organic gases.

Option 1: Laboratory-based VOC tests This option mandates that specific VOCs must be maintained at the following thresholds in occupiable spaces:

  • Benzene (CAS 71-43-2): 10 µg/m³ or lower
  • Formaldehyde (CAS 50-00-0): 50 µg/m³ or lower
  • Toluene (CAS 108-88-3): 300 µg/m³ or lower

Option 2: TVOC continuous monitoring Under this option, the total Volatile Organic Compounds (TVOC) level must be met in occupiable spaces:

  • Total VOC: 500 µg/m³ or lower

Data Requirement

To monitor the VOCs and TVOC levels, accurate indoor air quality monitoring equipment is essential. Regular monitoring, preferably continuous for TVOCs, provides the data for performance evaluation.

Compliance Examples

Compliance OptionBenzeneFormaldehydeTolueneTotal VOC
Option 1≤10 µg/m³≤50 µg/m³≤300 µg/m³N/A
Option 2N/AN/AN/A≤500 µg/m³

About Firstgreen Consulting

At Firstgreen Consulting, we prioritize creating environments that are not just energy efficient but also safe and healthy for its occupants. Our experts can provide thorough guidance and support in complying with the WELL certification requirements, From assessing current air quality levels, recommending and implementing VOC control measures, to providing regular monitoring, we assist in every step of your green building journey. Together, let’s build spaces that are truly healthy and sustainable.

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