Author Archives: Breathing City Admin

Written by Dr Kat Roberts (Summer School Participant) On 10-14th June 2024, early career researchers from around the globe travelled to Udine in northern Italy, for an intense week-long summer school on ‘Fluid Mechanics of Buildings for Energy, Health and Well-being’. The week was hosted by the International Centre for Mechanical Sciences (CISM), which is a non-profit organisation founded in 1968. The main aim of CISM is to bring together scientists and young researchers from around the world to foster knowledge sharing and learning in the international scientific community. The week was supported by the UKRI Future Urban Ventilation Network, who funded the input from early career guest lecturers and provided bursaries for a number of participants. This week’s summer school was developed and led by Henry Burridge, Senior Lecturer in fluid mechanics from Imperial College London, UK, in conjunction with Bert Blocken, Jørn Toftum, Cath Noakes, and Corinne Mandin.…

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We are delighted to draw your attention to a recently published paper authored by Cairan Van Rooyen (University College London) and Tim Sharpe (University of Strathclyde) detailing the findings from a national survey on ventilation provision and use in homes in Great Britain. Representing the first large scale survey of ventilation provision and use in British homes the paper highlights that 71% of homes did not have ventilation provision in line with building standards. In addition, there is a lack of public guidance on managing ventilation in UK homes so even when homes conform to building standards the quality of indoor air can be in doubt. The full paper can be seen here.  

On 6th December UKHSA held the 2023 UKHSA Air Quality and Public Health Stakeholder Meeting in the city of Manchester. The meeting was well attended by researchers, policy makers, industry partners and civic sector groups who work across health, social and building science disciplines. During the 2023 UKHSA Air Quality and Public Health Stakeholder Meeting we firstly heard from Dr Karen Exley who gave an overview of the UKHSA Air Quality Programme (National and Local Work). We then had an air quality update from DEFRA followed by a session on Sharing Stakeholder Case Studies, Good Practices – Community Programmes. This was followed by an interactive session on the Indoor Air Quality Observatory, and the day ended with a second session on Sharing Stakeholder Case Studies, Good Practices – Messages and Communication. Overview of UKHSA Air Quality Programme (National & Local Work) Dr Karen Exley In 2023 UKHSA published their strategic…

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On 5th December 2023 UKHSA held the 2023 UKHSA Air Quality and Public Health Research Review Meeting in the city of Manchester. The meeting was well attended by researchers, policy makers, industry partners and civic sector groups who work across health, social and building science disciplines. During the 2023 UKHSA Air Quality and Public Health Research Review Meeting we heard talks in three sessions: Indoor Air Pollution and Health, Exposure to Air Pollution, Air Pollution, health and interventions. Indoor Air Pollution and Health Navigating the Unknown – Challenges in Managing Mould Growth in Buildings Dr Hector Altamirano In this keynote address Dr Altamirano took a look back in history to see if mould growth in buildings and its impact on health is a recently identified problem. It turns out, perhaps not unexpectedly, that mould growth has been identified as a cause of asthma and other respiratory related diseases since the…

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Fluid Mechanics of Buildings for Energy, Health and Well-being Applications are now open to sign-up to, what promises to be, an amazing summer school on buildings for energy, health, and well-being in Italy! Lecturers on the summer school will include Cath Noakes, Corinne Mandin, Bert Blocken, Jørn Toftum, and Henry Burridge. The summer school is aimed at PhD students, early career researchers, and people working in industry who have an interest in buildings, indoor environments, and their impact on energy consumption, human health, and well-being. Prerequisites include some knowledge of fluid mechanics or building physics, and a hunger to learn more – you can start getting familiar at the Suggested Reading tab here! Places are allocated on a ‘first come, first served’ basis so please sign-up, by completing the online form here.  

On Wednesday 4th October Dr Abigail Hathway lead a webinar to disseminate recently developed ventilation guidance for small businesses to environmental health teams across the U.K. (Talk available here: https://youtu.be/1F0Su79DN2w). The guidance was developed from research with small business owners to understand both technical and behavioural challenges to improving ventilation and can be found here:  https://forms.gle/FyxwFeWtMm8Wx9TBA Over 120 people virtually attended the webinar with attendees from across the breadth of the U.K. We had fantastic engagement from attendees and encourage environmental health professionals that were unable to attend to watch the youtube video. In addition to Dr Abigail Hathway’s talk on the guidance we also had Professor Cath Noakes explain the concept of the ‘Indoor Air Quality Observatory’ (talk available here: https://youtu.be/gbIdayn4aU4 and questionnaire here:  https://forms.office.com/e/QGPVMHxy2M). The Indoor Air Quality Observatory has a long term aim to establish a national network of indoor air quality sensors to determine air quality in buildings using low cost, networked…

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The Air Quality and Public Health team at the UK Health Security Agency are pleased to announce two annual air quality events, to be held in person in Manchester. 2023 UKHSA Annual UK Research Review Meeting on Outdoor and Indoor Air Pollution Research – Tuesday 5 December – Chamber Space,Manchester- https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/2023-ukhsa-annual-outdoor-and-indoor-air-pollution-research-review-meeting-tickets-667419207817 Since the mid-1990s, the Annual UK Review Meeting on Outdoor and Indoor Air Pollution Research has been the main national meeting of the UK’s experts in the field of air pollution and health research and policy makers. The meeting will bring together academics, government scientists, policy makers, and others to present and discuss the latest research findings. 2023 UKHSA Air Quality and Public Health Stakeholder Seminar – Wednesday 6 December – Chamber Space, Manchester- https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/2023-ukhsa-air-quality-and-public-health-stakeholder-meeting-tickets-667621512917 The annual UKHSA Air Quality and Public Health Stakeholder Seminar, is held to inform wider stakeholders of developments, giving them the opportunity to contribute to and comment on future work plans. In previous years, this feedback has…

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There are a number of exciting events associated with indoor and outdoor air, public health and building design in the coming months! We’ve provided a round up for the next few months so you don’t miss a any opportunities to share knowledge and connect with the community. If there’s anything we’ve missed, then email contact@breathingcity.org and we’ll add it to the list! Date Event Location 20.09.2023 Geneva Health Forum and WHO Europe Indoor Air Conference Online / Bern 04.10.2023 Environmental Policy: From Evidence to Impact.A Global Environmental Measurement and Monitoring Centre Summitand Glasgow Environmental Monitoring of Indoor and Outdoor Air (GEMINOA) Project Launch Scotland: Glasgow 10.10.2023 Institute of Air Quality Management (IAQM) Routes to Clean Air England: Manchester 08.11.2023 National Air Quality Conference England: London 08.11.2023 World Ventil8 Day Varied 15-16.11.2023 UKHSA Conference England: Leeds 05.12.2023 UKHSA Annual Outdoor and Indoor Air Pollution Research Review Meeting England: Manchester 06.12.2023 UKHSA…

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On 12 May 2023, the Future Urban Ventilation Network (FUVN) and the Tackling Air Pollution At School Network (TAPAS) held an online facilitated workshop (hosted by The Collective) with key stakeholders to discuss the viability of a UK Indoor Air Quality Observatory. Key stakeholders were invited from across public policy, academia, funding bodies, and professional institutions. The workshop followed on from previous meetings, which took place in Paris, April 2022, and London, October 2022.  Background  It is well recognised that air quality has a substantial impact on human health. The ability to relate outdoor air quality data to health outcomes has been achieved through the significant investment in a national (and indeed worldwide) network of air quality sensors combined with models and analysis to evaluate spatial and temporal variation in air quality.  However, people spend around 90% of their time indoors, so the majority of air breathed is inside homes…

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On Monday July 17 2023 our theme 2 leads, Henry Burridge and Abigail Hathway, hosted a workshop titled ‘Health Effects of Building Ventilation’ in Westminster, London. The workshop brought together building and ventilation engineers, epidemiologists, clinicians, toxicologists, public health professionals and built environment experts to identify and develop ideas and solutions that will make a difference to indoor air quality and health outcomes. Professor Sir Stephen Holgate set the scene for the workshop highlighting the wide variety of expertise and skills in the air quality community, celebrating the involvement of young people, early career researchers and professionals in the air quality movement. The air quality community is embracing the challenge ensuring climate factors feed into holistic solutions, as well as the consideration of vulnerable groups and equality. To further set the scene, the participants were asked “what’s new in the indoor air and ventilation world?“. It was widely agreed that indoor…

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