Bill seeking to regulate mold in public buildings in SC passes state House, Senate

A proposed bill that could bring South Carolina one step closer to regulating mold is now one step closer to becoming a reality.

House Bill 3127 is a resolution that will establish a committee that would study the impacts of mold and find the best way to get rid of it.

According to online records from the S.C. Legislature, the bill passed the House on Feb. 12 and then passed the Senate on March 14.

The committee would be called the Mold Abatement and Remediation Study Committee and would look at public policy issues relative to mold in public buildings, focus on the impacts of heath of children in public schools, and propose policy initiatives to remediate and get rid of mold problems.

The proposed legislation comes as many Horry County parents continue to express concerns over mold issues at local schools.

Last week, St. James Elementary School was proclaimed free of amplified mold spores after several rounds of testing and cleaning.

After mold became a concern at St. James, WMBF News put in a request for work orders at Horry County Schools since February 2015 that contained the words mold, mildew, humidity and air quality.

WMBF received about 90 pages worth of documents and some of those work orders contained concerns about mold growing in several different schools.

North Myrtle Beach Middle School, Conway High School, Lakewood Elementary School and Forestbrook Middle School are just some among the more than 30 schools where staff described potential mold and mildew issues over the last four years.

Article Source:
http://www.live5news.com/2019/03/18/bill-seeking-regulate-mold-public-buildings-sc-passes-state-house-senate/

Recent rains cause spike in mold growth

Residents across San Diego County say they’ve seen more mold in their homes after recent rainfall.

A number of mold testing and removal companies FOX 5 reached out to said they have seen a spike in business. One company said business has more than doubled and another said this has been one of the busiest weeks they have seen in years.

Mold has kicked Fernando Perez’s daughter out of her room in her Del Mar home.

“She’s obviously not very happy about it,” Perez said.

“If you see a discoloration I would recommend to send a picture. It’s the cheapest way to do this. Find a legit company send them a picture,” Lief said. “We can tell you if you actually need us.”

In this case, the Perez family said professional help was needed and they are glad they acted fast.

“It’s scary to think that people, if they’ve got leaks and they don’t see through to the dry wall and you don’t know it and people are sensitive, or have allergies, or asthma issues. God forbid the potential health issues you could have from unknown mold,” Perez said.

Recently, Perez said his teenager noticed a spot on the ceiling that appeared to be wet and stained. He called professionals to take a look — who in turn told him his family not only had a leak, but a mold problem in the already nearly renovated room.

“You would never know by opening this up that you would see that it would have been this bad,” Perez said as he showed FOX 5 the wall that was infested with mold.

Orange Restoration, a company that removes mold, stepped in to help. Owner Yaron Lief said the wet winter months have kept him and his employees busy answering calls.

“The average would be five or six a day and now we are maybe at 25 a day,” Lief said.

For those who think they might have a leak or mold issue, Lief suggests to get in touch with a professional because mold can affect people’s health — especially if they have underlying medical conditions.

Article Source:
https://fox5sandiego.com/2019/03/15/recent-rains-cause-spike-in-mold-growth/

Recent rains cause spike in mold growth

Residents across San Diego County say they’ve seen more mold in their homes after recent rainfall.

A number of mold testing and removal companies FOX 5 reached out to said they have seen a spike in business. One company said business has more than doubled and another said this has been one of the busiest weeks they have seen in years.

Mold has kicked Fernando Perez’s daughter out of her room in her Del Mar home.

“She’s obviously not very happy about it,” Perez said.

Recently, Perez said his teenager noticed a spot on the ceiling that appeared to be wet and stained. He called professionals to take a look — who in turn told him his family not only had a leak, but a mold problem in the already nearly renovated room.

“You would never know by opening this up that you would see that it would have been this bad,” Perez said as he showed FOX 5 the wall that was infested with mold.

Orange Restoration, a company that removes mold, stepped in to help. Owner Yaron Lief said the wet winter months have kept him and his employees busy answering calls.

“The average would be five or six a day and now we are maybe at 25 a day,” Lief said.

“If you see a discoloration I would recommend to send a picture. It’s the cheapest way to do this. Find a legit company send them a picture,” Lief said. “We can tell you if you actually need us.”

In this case, the Perez family said professional help was needed and they are glad they acted fast.

“It’s scary to think that people, if they’ve got leaks and they don’t see through to the dry wall and you don’t know it and people are sensitive, or have allergies, or asthma issues. God forbid the potential health issues you could have from unknown mold,” Perez said.

fox5sandiego.com/2019/03/15/recent-rains-cause-spike-in-mold-growth/

Why Base The Mold Inspection Report on IICRC Conditional Areas?

There are at least four reasons a mold inspector should consider using Conditional Areas as the basis for the mold inspection report. First, Conditional Areas are recommended in IICRC S520- 2015 as the basis for mold remediation activities.(1) Second, assigning Conditional Areas forces the mold inspector to view a structure in greater detail. Third, the inspection strategy determines the sampling plan and the data-interpretation plan. Fourth, a stratified strategy allows the mold inspector to collect select samples as composites, reducing the cost of the inspection. The typical strategy used in mold inspections is referred to as Professional Judgment. A more sophisticated approach is to use a stratification strategy; separating interior spaces into discrete areas. One example of a stratification strategy that is recommended by AIHA is Similar Exposure Groups.

(2) Another example of a stratified strategy is the concept of Conditional Areas as defined by IICRC in S520-2015.(1) Conditional Areas, which typically have been applied to mold remediation plans, are defined as: • Condition 1: Areas not affected by a water intrusion incident [no restoration]; • Condition 2: Areas affected by contaminant spores settling onto surfaces [restoration]; • Condition 3: Areas affected by a water intrusion or elevated humidity [remediation]. The Condition of an interior space is typically assessed by combining the information gained from the visual inspection, incident history, occupant interview, and the sample results. However, it should be noted that assessing the Condition of a space may require the appropriate samples to be collected. For example, if the soft-surface items in a living room had simply been contaminated by settled spores (Condition 2), they could be HEPA-vacuumed and restored to service. However, if the living room had been affected by elevated humidity for an extended period those items may be Condition 3 (interior surfaces colonized with mold growth). Differentiating between these two Conditions may be possible based on either the visual inspection or incident history. When this approach does not provide the necessary guidance, a differential sampling method may be used to determine Condition. (3) First, S520-2015 recommends that “Condition (1, 2, or 3) … should be assessed, documented, and reported to the client”. In addition, Part 6 (Mitigation) of the IAQA/AIHA Body of Knowledge document states the mold inspector is responsible for “identifying appropriate responses and including them in the mitigation plan”.(4) Although the remediation contractor is responsible for implementing appropriate responses, the mold inspector is the party responsible for identifying the appropriate responses. If the mold inspector does not use Conditional Areas as the basis for the inspection report, then how can the remediation contractor use them as the basis for the remediation? Second, a significant advantage of using Conditional Areas as the basis for the inspection strategy is that it not only allows the structure to be assessed by area, it requires the mold inspector to assess each area separately. Both the IAQA Body of Knowledge and IICRC S520- 2015 state that an assessment should be performed when mold is present or suspected of being present. An assessment requires the assessor to differentiate between normal and contaminated indoor spaces. For example, the objectives of an assessment may include identifying (1) building-related contamination, (2) the condition of contents, and/or (3) occupant exposure potential; all of which are expected to vary with Condition. Stratifying interior spaces by Condition may focus the inspection, suggesting the objectives that are appropriate for each Conditional Area. Third, the inspection strategy not only provides the basis for the remediation plan; but it also provides the basis for the sampling plan and the data-interpretation plan. It is often not practical for the mold inspector to classify an entire structure as a single Condition, since Condition frequently varies from area to area. Viewing the structure as a whole is neither efficient for the IEP, the remediation contractor, nor the client. Basing the inspection on Conditional Areas forces the IEP to differentiate between normal and contaminated areas, and to identify the Condition of each area in the structure. Fourth, samples collected in the same Conditional Area may be combined and averaged. For example, if the three second-floor bedrooms are Condition 1, then a separate 5-minute airborne sample may be collected in each bedroom; or, a single composite sample may be collected – using a single cassette to collect a 5-minute sample in each bedroom (composite sample).

Article Source: http://www.iaqa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Technical-Feature-2-Winter-2019-.pdf

IKEA introduces a new way to reduce indoor air pollution with a curtain

It will soon be possible to reduce common indoor air pollutants using just a curtain. A mineral-based surface treatment enables the new IKEA curtain to break down air pollutants when it gets in contact with light.   

Air pollution is a global issue and particularly problematic in megacities. According to WHO around 90% of people worldwide breathe polluted air, which is estimated to cause eight million deaths per year. IKEA has committed to contributing to a world of clean air, by actively reducing air pollutants and also enabling people to purify the air in their homes. The GUNRID air purifying curtain is a new step on the journey.

“Besides enabling people to breathe better air at home, we hope that GUNRID will increase people’s awareness of indoor air pollution, inspiring behavioural changes that contribute to a world of clean air,” says Lena Pripp-Kovac, Head of Sustainability at Inter IKEA Group. “GUNRID is the first product to use the technology, but the development will give us opportunities for future applications on other textiles.”

The curtain uses a unique technology, which has been developed by IKEA over the last years together with universities in Europe and Asia as well as IKEA suppliers and innovators. The way it works is similar to photosynthesis found in nature. The process is activated by both outdoor and indoor light.

“For me, it’s important to work on products that solve actual problems and are relevant to people. Textiles are used across homes and by enabling a curtain to purify the air, we are creating an affordable and space-saving air purifying solution that also makes the home more beautiful,” says Mauricio Affonso, Product Developer at IKEA Range & Supply.

For many years, IKEA has been reducing air pollution from its own operations by phasing out hazardous chemicals and reducing air emissions. Last year, IKEA launched the Better Air Now! initiative, aiming to turn rice straw – a rice harvesting residue that is traditionally burned and contributes heavily to air pollution – into a new renewable material source for IKEA products. IKEA has also committed to becoming climate positive by 2030, reducing our overall climate footprint by 70% on average per product (compared to 2016).

“We know that there is no single solution to solve air pollution. We work long term for positive change, to enable people to live healthier and more sustainable lives,” says Lena Pripp-Kovac.

GUNRID air purifying curtain will be available in IKEA stores next year.

Article Source: https://newsroom.inter.ikea.com/news/all/ikea-introduces-a-new-way-to-reduce-indoor-air-pollution-with-a-curtain/s/4b4a2efc-e4ef-4f65-9a5d-d1fff11e5898