A new paint technology from Sherwin-Williams has received an innovation award from the Environmental Protection Agency this week. The company’s Water-Based Acrylic Alkyd Technology, or WBAAT, is being awarded a 2011 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award in the Designing Greener Chemicals category. The paint uses soybean oil and recycled PET plastic bottles to replace oil typically used in alkyd paint and, in doing so, reduces VOCs in the paint by 60%.
In early June, the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies issued a report entitled “Climate Change, the Indoor Environment, and Health” which found that climate change could affect indoor environments as buildings seek to become more energy efficient. The report was commissioned by the EPA to summarize the effects of climate change on indoor air quality and health.
Although formaldehyde is now listed as a known carcinogen by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, humans will be exposed to this substance in the environment, at home, and in the workplace. It’s in soil, food, and water, not to mention one of the primary methods of exposure: indoor and outdoor air. And besides being a carcinogen, health effects include eye, nose, and throat irritation; wheezing and coughing; fatigue; skin rash; and severe allergic reactions, according to the EPA.
Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) added eight substances to its Report on Carcinogens. The 12th Report on Carcinogens now includes a grand total of 240 listings. HHS added formaldehyde and aristolochic acids as “known human carcinogens” and listed captafol, cobalt-tungsten carbide (in powder or hard metal form), certain inhalable glass wool fibers, o-nitrotoluene, riddelliine, and styrene as substances that are “reasonably anticipated to be human carcinogens.”
The most important job for a ventilation fan, particularly in a well-sealed home, is to exhaust the excess moisture from the air. Moisture needs to be kept from building up indoors to keep the interior environment comfortable. To help with this, Panasonic is introducing a new series of WhisperSense fans with dual sensors which will be available starting in June 2011.