California School Reopening Ventilation and Energy Efficiency Verification and Repair Program
Listen to the GAO Podcast about K-12 School Building Construction and Renovation Needs, featuring interviews with GAO officials on significant issues and new reports HERE.
View the GAO study that found that School Districts Frequently Identified Multiple Building Systems Needing Updates or Replacement HERE.
The UC Davis Western Cooling Efficiency Center (WCEC) has put together an educational and informational website providing information and resources for improving air quality in California schools.
CAL SMACNA is proud to share with you an exclusive video produced by the UC Davis Western Cooling Efficiency Center and sponsored by NEMI illustrating the importance of proper ventilation in schools. This video was produced as a resource that can be used by CAL SMACNA members and others in our HVAC allied trades community to help increase public awareness and understanding of ventilation in modern buildings.
HVAC systems provide necessary mechanical ventilation to classrooms. Students and teachers occupying energy efficient school buildings with sealed building envelopes rely upon properly operating ventilation systems for fresh air. Ventilation helps remove the build-up of indoor air pollutants such as volatile organic compounds, including formaldehyde, which can off-gas from building materials, finishes, and furniture. There is also increasing evidence that CO2 exhaled by building occupants is an indoor pollutant that can affect cognitive performance. This is particularly important in classrooms, where lots of people gather in a small space built and designed for energy efficiency.
After thorough research by Lawrence Berkeley Labs and UC Davis, the WCEC recommend the following actions to improve ventilation rates in classrooms:
- Complete commissioning and acceptance testing of new HVAC systems as required by Title 24.
- Run HVAC fans when classrooms are occupied to bring in fresh air.
- Replace filters 2-3 times per school year.
- Monitor classroom CO2 concentrations. Thermostats with CO2 sensors and stand-alone sensors are widely available.
- Test ventilation rates in existing HVAC systems and make corrections when needed.
The WCEC website also includes information on the white paper on Proposed Ventilation and Energy Efficiency Verification/Repair Program for School Reopening. The white paper presents a proposal that would prepare schools for reopening during the COVID-19 crisis.
To view more information, news coverage regarding this issue, and additional resources visit their website HERE.
If you are interested in receiving more information on classroom IAQ or otherwise helping our efforts to improve schools please send your contact information to Emily Mills at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Qualified Contractor Referral List — School Ventilation Verification and Energy Optimization Program
Scott Peterson, Service Director
Penn Air Control, Inc.
Nathan Culley, General Manager
Los Angeles, CA
Air Systems Service & Construction
Logan Brimer, Chief Engineer
Alpha Air Balancing Agency, Inc.
Romulo A. Gonzalez, President
A.O. Reed & Co.
Aubrey Taft, Vice President Business Development
San Diego, CA
ACH Mechanical Contractor, Inc.
Hector Vargas, President