- THE MAGAZINE
A survey that the International Center for Toxicology and Medicine (ICTM) commissioned late last year found that by a lopsided 71% to 16% majority, public sector officials with responsibility for overseeing environmental health risks that may affect schools, courthouses, libraries and other public buildings, believe "indoor air quality is likely to become a much more significant issue in the near future." The cause that was mentioned the most often as a culprit of IAQ problems was mold, commanding a 61% response rate from those who had reported such problems.
According to ICTM, the officials surveyed said they believe indoor air quality is most likely to become an even more challenging issue "because concerns are often based on building occupants' perceptions of problems rather than the problem that has been diagnosed." Those who responded to the survey tended to agree by a narrow 49% to 33% margin that, "growing public and regulatory concern about indoor air quality will likely lead to significant changes in building design and construction in the next five years."
The ICTM, which specializes in environmental health risk assessment and management, had commissioned the survey as an effort to better track the IAQ issue. Based on 100 detailed telephone interviews conducted in November and December by an independent opinion research firm, the survey drew responses from professionals with positions at the Public Risk Management Association.