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Productivity and Indoor Air Quality

The air we breathe affects our health much more significantly than we can imagine. The quantity of time most people spend in the office is second only to the amount of time they spend at home. It is not an astonishment that the air people breathe at work has a significant impact on their complete well-being and productivity.

People who do not feel well will not work well ─ investigations in office buildings show those office workers who report any acute health symptoms perform significantly worse compared to workers with no acute health symptoms.

Adequate ventilation and the avoidance of pollution sources that reduce indoor air quality are therefore vital for optimal work performance and good health.

To ensure productivity, it is important to ascertain that the air we breathe is clean. Air monitoring devices can help detect poor air quality. It is critical to be aware and raise awareness around indoor air quality. By choosing to monitor indoor air, we can take better control of our health.

Investigations on the mental performance of occupants in office buildings and schools have shown that poor air quality reduces mental performance, while good air quality improves it (Ref: Seppanen and Fisk, 2006; Seppanen et al., 2009).

in 1999 the first of a series of experiments were published, revealing new mechanisms by which raised levels of indoor air pollution may reduce productivity, either in addition to or instead of having negative effects on comfort and health. It was shown in realistic experimental exposures lasting up to 5 h that the performance of simulated office work could be significantly increased by removing common indoor sources of air pollution, such as floor-coverings, used supply air filters and personal computers, or by keeping them in place and increasing the rate at which clean outdoor air was supplied from 3 to 10 to 30 l s−1 per person. These short-term effects were demonstrated repeatedly even at pollutant levels that had no measurable effects on the perception of air quality by the occupants themselves, although there were effects on subclinical SBS symptoms such as headache.

Employees who are constantly exposed to bad air may feel that their employers are not concerned with their well-being. As a result, they will not be motivated to deliver their best performance.

Evidence suggests that improvements in air quality lead to improvements in worker productivity across a range of sectors, including agriculture, manufacturing, and service sectors. These effects also arise at levels of air quality that are below pollution thresholds in countries with the highest levels of environmental regulation. The findings suggest a new approach to understanding the consequences of environmental regulations.

Economic calculations show that a 10% increase in work performance can balance the full cost of installation and operation of a building.

Clairco provides clean air as a service by optimizing air quality at the least possible operational and environmental cost.

All taken together, the results tell a consistent story: increases in air pollution reduce worker productivity, even at levels of pollution generally considered to be safe. This finding holds across a range of different contexts, from agricultural and manufacturing workers in California to the service sector in India.

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