This year, we planned to conduct indoor air quality inspection and counseling for establishments which are announced publice site for inspection, as well as those specifically noted but unannounced publice site, and continue to promote indoor air quality maintenance and management in public establishments under our jurisdiction in an effort to enhance our self-management capability.
This year, a total of 600 sites publice site for inspection and key counseling venues have been inspected, with measurements of carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), formaldehyde (HCHO), and suspended particulates PM10 and PM2.5. Thirty-five venues had average CO2 concentrations of over 1,000 ppm, which included 16 kindergartens and 14 childcare centers. The main reasons for the exceedance of the standard were (1) the air conditioning was a split type air conditioner, which cannot draw in external air (2) the indoor circulation caused by the closed doors and windows of the premises, resulting in insufficient air exchange and CO2 accumulation.
Additionally, during the year, in conjunction with project audits and business investigations, 150 standard method audits for public places have been completed , including 2 inspections of announced publice site, 14 inspections of wholesale stores, 41 inspections of public transportation stations, 39 inspections of department store anniversary sales, 2 re-inspections of exceedances, and 52 inspections of sensitive public communities, of which one of the listed establishments with exceedances of formaldehyde standards was improved in a timely manner and passed the re-inspection.
In this project, a total of 60 sites received expert consultation to improve their circumstances, including 38 sports and fitness facilities, 10 kindergartens, 7 childcare centers, 4 public markets and 1 department store. Before the expert consultation, the project drew a pollution map and added contour lines based on the results of the site inspection to provide experts with reference information and to give more precise and effective improvement suggestions to the sites. As the main air conditioners in nursery and child care centers are split-type, which do not draw in outside air, so experts suggest opening diagonal windows (with a gap of about 10 cm) regularly to facilitate air circulation. Many sports and fitness facilities are located in the basement, with mostly fan control unit or split-type air conditioners, which cannot bring in fresh air, so experts suggest the use of machines to draw in fresh air. Public markets have only one entrance/exit due to the pandemic, resulting in the accumulation of contaminants inside. It is recommended that even during the pandemic, all doors can be opened with an angle of around 45 degrees and blocked with objects, so as to prevent people from entering while ensuring air circulation.
Three online information sessions were held this year to promote the importance of indoor air quality, with a total of 1,276 online viewers. We invited both announced and unannounced publice site,including kindergartens, childcare centers, postnatal care facilities, sports and fitness facilities, and markets, to the information sessions. The content of the sessions was adapted to the target audience and included an introduction of laws and regulations, indoor pollution sources, indoor air quality self-management and improvement, and the promotion of the seal. The purpose of the sessions is to effectively enhance awareness and self-management of indoor air quality in establishments, as well as to encourage public establishments in the city to actively apply for the self-management certification seal as well as to promote the installation of automatic monitoring devices. Our city have issued a total of 240 self-management labels to various establishments, which included 44 establishments having received “excellent” label, 196 establishments received “good” label, with the label acquisition rate ranked first in the nation. This project shall continue to assist establishments in the application and review for acquiring the self-management label, as well as counsel the establishments who intend to apply for the self-management label to acquire its self-management label.
This year, 500 copies of promotional materials, leaflets, and guides were produced to promote information on indoor air pollutants and self-management seal application, which were distributed at information sessions and related meetings. We also prepared infographics for sensitive groups (e.g.kindergartens and postnatal care facilities), including easy-to-understand indoor air quality management methods to enhance indoor air quality knowledge and management capabilities.
Along with the inspections of new childcare centers by the Department of Social Welfare, fitness venues by the Department of Sports, and public markets by the Market Administration Office, each departments of the government assisted in forwarding the relevant seal application information and process, focusing on public venues to promote the self-management seal. Fifty-three venues for sensitive groups expressed intention to apply (including 39 childcare centers, 10 kindergartens and 4 post-natal care institutions), of which 3 were awarded the excellent label. This year, we conducted 1-week CO2 concentration monitoring at 10 facilities for sensitive groups and those who wish to apply for the seal, in order to understand the peak hours and to effectively improve the indoor air quality of the facilities. From the monitoring data, it was found that this type of establishments often have high carbon dioxide concentrations between 14:00 and 16:00. The main problems are summarized as follows: (1) for comfort during lunch break, the facilities often use internal circulation air conditioning, and the doors and windows are closed tightly, and (2) although the doors and windows are open, the ventilation is poor because only one side window is opened or the curtain is blocked. For the above cases, monitoring data of the sites has been provided, and the sites have been informed that they should pay attention to the CO2 concentration peak hours on weekdays and enhance ventilation during certain time periods.
This project proposes the following improvement plans:(1)Continued investigation of the city's establishments to be monitored, in order to implement the city's regulations of monitored establishments.(2)It is recommended to promote the installation of automatic monitoring facilities in public establishments with high traffic flow and provide consultation for such establishments.(3) It is recommended that all bureaus and departments should evaluate the inclusion of the indoor air quality self-management label in the operating criteria of new establishments.