More on Ozone---Cautions and Warnings
NOTE: Since first writing the following issue, we have seen a dramatic rise in
ozone salesmen approaching school districts. Often the contact is made by parents
who also happen to distribute (through MLM programs) ozone generating equipment.
These well-meaning people are often misinformed by company sales literature
and are ultimately asking educators and administrators to expose children to
potentially harmful conditions.
This cannot be allowed to happen.
The Use of Ozone in Occupied Spaces
Questions are occasionally raised about the effects of ozone on indoor air
quality (IAQ). Now, thanks to multilevel marketing, we have seen a dramatic
increase in the use of ozone generators in occupied spaces. Often, these units
are brought into a building by allergy-prone individuals, presumably to reduce
their symptoms. Research, however, shows that this isn't always the best decision.
Whether ozone helps or hurts the indoor environment has not always been easy
to determine. Recent research, however, has shown that, at best, ozone does
little or nothing to control contaminants, and at worst, can actually degrade
a space's indoor air quality. All of this occurs even though manufacturers insist
that their devices are "the answer" to almost any IAQ problem.
Two scientific studies have added to the volumes of literature which advise
against introducing ozone into any building's environment. Most importantly,
they have shown that when ozone combines with some pollutants commonly found
in indoor spaces, it can actually create other pollutants which are harmful
to building occupants. Some of the new compounds which are formed can also adversely
affect office furnishings or equipment - especially sensitive electronic equipment
which is more susceptible to the corrosive effects of those compounds.
One example of a chemical reaction involves the chemical d-limonene. (The d-limonene,
a natural product derived from citrus fruits, creates the sweet citrus-like
odor found in many cleaning compounds and bathroom deodorants.) By itself, researchers
said that d-limonene isn't necessarily irritating. When it combines with ozone,
however, it can form formaldehyde and other irritating compounds, which are
far worse than the d-limonene itself. Unfortunately, people who might purchase
and bring ozone generators into their workspace think they're helping matters,
when just the opposite is occurring.
Another and perhaps more important issue is that many of the people who purchase
and use ozone generators are already experiencing health problems. Introducing
ozone into office spaces can risk creating more irritating pollutants, and perhaps
add to those adverse health symptoms. When such a situation does occur, complaints
from occupants may simply state that "the building is making them sick."
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Indoor Air Currents is a weekly newsletter owned by Building Air Quality and
written by it's staff. The ideas, opinions, and advice contained within are
solely attributed to the moderators. Permission to forward this newsletter to
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Copyright, 1999. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
To Contact Us:
BUILDING AIR QUALITY Indoor Air Quality Consulting for commercial, industrial,
and educational facilities.
Voice: (281) 775-9450 - Fax: (281) 296-2889 send mailto:IAQSolutions@baq1.com
For more information on the ever-changing issue of IAQ, visit us on the World
Wide Web at: http://www.baq1.com ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~