Healthy Air Episode #23

Episode #23

Making Air Quality a Priority Makes a Difference | Ted Bischak

In this episode, Ted Bischak talks about the biggest change and the opportunity in real estate today. He shares how landlords are responsible for preparing for the re-entry into the office space and how making air quality a priority makes a difference.

Ted Bischak is a Principal and Co-Founder of Ocean West Capital Partners. He is responsible for all Property Operations including, Asset Management, Property Management, Construction Management and Physical Due Diligence, upon acquisition or disposition, of managed assets. Prior to the formation of Ocean West Capital Partners, he was Senior Vice President of Asset Management for Maguire Properties, responsible for the firm’s entire portfolio of 21 million square feet of real estate assets. Before joining Maguire Properties, Mr. Bischak served as Senior Vice President for CommonWealth Partners, where, in partnership with the CalPERS pension fund, he was responsible for all operations activities, including in-house property management, tenant improvement, operational leasing, and asset management for the $1.5 billion portfolio and directed all property-level acquisition and disposition activities. Additionally, Mr. Bischak has held senior management positions with Tooley & Company and The Irvine Company, where he was a key member of the development team on over 6 million square feet of new office development product, multiple retail and hotel projects as well as 6,000 apartment units over his 35-year career in commercial real estate.

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Ted’s background [1:20]
  • The biggest change in real estate [4:34]
  • The real opportunity in real estate today [6:31]
  • Post-pandemic re-entry to the office space [8:28]
  • Occupancy post-pandemic [11:35]
  • Indoor air quality valuations post-pandemic [20:05]
  • Validating air quality and costs to tenants [23:08]
  • Making air quality a priority makes a difference [27:43]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

The real estate industry has changed from buy and hold forever to exiting a project between three to seven years.”

“Post-pandemic, office buildings that will appeal more to tenants will have outdoor components.”

“The effort landlords will put into their buildings to ensure tenants feel safe post-pandemic will depend on their investment capabilities.”

“Educating the tenant base on what really matters in terms of air quality and safety within the office space will be a big job moving forward.”

“There are urban myths about indoor air quality and what constitutes high quality indoor environments that need to be addressed.”

“Landlords have to be able to validate their efforts in terms of air quality and safety to their tenants.”

“If you educate your brokers on your indoor air quality needs, you will differentiate yourself to your tenants.”

“The landlords that prioritize indoor air quality will see a value result.”

Healthy Air Episode #22

Episode #22

A More Prepared Future | Dr. Nick Clements

In this episode, Dr. Nick Clements talks about how buildings need multiple modes of operation. He also shares that it is interesting to learn how humans integrate with technical systems, because we constantly interact and impact many aspects of our indoor environments.

Dr. Nick Clements earned his BS, MS, and PhD in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder while working with engineers and scientists throughout the air quality community. After completing a Postdoctoral at CU Boulder researching surge control for pandemic flu and indoor air quality, Dr. Nick relocated to Rochester, Minnesota to work at the Well Living Lab as a Senior Director. With the Well Living Lab, he helped manage sensor and building systems, perform data analysis on large sets of environmental data, plan and propose research experiments and strategy, and coordinate research investigations. At the start of this year, he returned to CU Boulder. Dr. Nick’s research interests include indoor and outdoor air quality, dust emissions, hospital infection control and contamination transport, bioaerosols in the microbiome, applied statistics, and air quality data visualization.

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Dr. Nick’s background [1:38]
  • Research for a negative pressure ward [7:32]
  • Working at the Well Living Lab [14:32]
  • Human behavior impact [19:21]
  • Understanding of airborne transmission in a pandemic [22:44]
  • Inconsistent guidelines [27:07]
  • Buildings need multiple modes of operation [31:26]
  • Future of the air quality field [42:08]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

Pandemic preparedness plans exist, however few have been tested.”

“We experience and have an impact on many aspects of the indoor environment.”

“Humans interact and impact their environments all the time.”

“The physics of transmission needs to be brought to current understanding. This transmission route is significant and important and should be protected against in all scenarios.”

There’s momentum toward a holistic view of how physical processes of viruses work.

Different guidelines on protective equipment in healthcare facilities are set.

“We’re building systems that can be resilient to climate change and other scenarios where buildings do need to be kind of operated in a range of conditions.”

“I see that value of engaging with economists, behavioral researchers, sociologists to demonstrate the value of improving air quality to the public, as a critical next step.”

Healthy Air Episode #21

Episode #21

Ventilation Is a Key Factor in This Pandemic | Nancy McClellan

In this episode, Nancy McClellan talks about how industrial hygiene is an art form that allows professionals to look at the larger picture of occupant health and safety. She states that industrial hygiene is well suited and well prepared for addressing pandemics. She also shares with us that as a professional she is bridging the gap between industrial hygiene know-how and controlling a biological hazard and creating tools for ABM’s clients.

Nancy McClellan is the CEO of Occupational Health Management. She is an award-winning industrial hygiene and safety expert with over 25 years of broad international experience practicing, teaching, and authoring to anticipate, recognize, evaluate, control, and prevent workplace health and safety hazards in high-hazard industries. She has extensive expertise in pandemic Covid-19 response management, including facility air and surface disinfection strategies and engineering controls. Nancy has been domestically and internationally recognized for leadership service to the IH profession as the current AIHA Board of Directors Treasurer-Elect and in the recent past as a Chair and Director for the American Industrial Hygiene Association, the American Board of Industrial Hygiene, among others. She is currently Chair of the COHSE External Advisory Board, guest lecturer at the University of Michigan Graduate School of Public Health, and practicing industrial hygiene as an experienced independent consultant, subject matter expert, and sought-after international expert lecturer.

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Nancy’s background [1:37]
  • Importance of industrial hygiene [3:06]
  • Indoor air quality [4:25]
  • Assessing risk factor of hazards [5:42]
  • Biological hazards need qualitative approaches [7:29]
  • Addressing ventilation becomes a tool [8:53]
  • Bridging the gap [11:20]
  • Safety is paramount [12:25]
  • Evolving technologies [13:12]
  • Industrial hygienist shortage [14:59]
  • Industrial hygiene is an art form [16:31]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

The Industrial Hygiene field looks at biological, chemical, and physical hazards.”

“People bring more than 20% of contaminants indoors themselves.”

“Industrial hygienists determine how severe a biological hazard is, where it can ultimately cause death.”

“An infectious dose is qualitative when it comes to biological hazards.”

“Ventilation and aerosol transmission is a key factor in this pandemic.”

“Industrial hygienists bridge the gap in know-how and control of biological hazards through tools.”

“Occupant safety is a paramount mission for all organizations at some level.”

“Technologies are rising to the top that address efficacy and safety of the exposed.”

“The pandemic has exacerbated the shortage of industrial hygienists globally.”

“Industrial hygiene is well suited and well prepared for addressing pandemics.”

Healthy Air Episode #20

Episode #20

The Solution to Indoor Air Pollution | Christian Weeks

In this episode, Christian Weeks talks about buildings being a major contributor to air pollution. He addresses the need to solve this issue and speaks about cleaning and improving indoor air. He also discusses how with COVID, we’ve seen a heightened awareness and concern about the air quality in buildings.

Christian Weeks is the Chief Executive Officer of enVerid Systems, a pioneer and global leader in air quality and energy efficiency. Christian has over a decade of experience in energy efficiency and indoor air quality. He is passionate about helping buildings achieve their energy efficiency and indoor air quality goals through smart investments, HVAC systems, and proven air cleaning technologies. Prior to his role at enVerid, Christian was an executive with EnerNOC, acquired by Enel X, and a management consultant with Deloitte Consulting. Christian lives in Boston and is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Harvard Business School.

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Christian’s background [1:00]
  • Buildings: a major contributor to air pollution [5:04]
  • Sorbent ventilation technology [7:21]
  • Balancing health & safety vs. energy/carbon cost penalties [12:38]
  • Is recirculation good? [18:22]
  • Companies scoring well on sustainability metrics are better run [22:04]
  • enVerid Systems’ with major partnership [28:27]
  • The future of indoor air quality (IAQ) [31:55]
  • Parting thoughts: let us learn from COVID [34:29]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

“Buildings are a major contributor to air pollution. We need to solve this issue if we’re going to address climate change.”

“It’s all about cleaning up enough indoor air, so that we don’t need as much outside air to maintain healthy indoor air quality.”

“We’re not compromising on the indoor air quality, we’re often improving it.”

“With COVID we’ve seen this heightened awareness and concern about the air quality in buildings.”

“Let’s make sure we take these lessons and make them part of our future, so that we can ultimately come out stronger than we were before.”

Healthy Air Episode #19

Episode #19

Adapting IAQ to Epidemic Disease is Resilience | Dr. Bill Bahnfleth

In this episode, Dr. Bill Bahnfleth talks about the lessons learned from anthrax, which can also apply to COVID. Being the chair of the ASHRAE Epidemic Task Force, he shares ASHRAE’s vision for IAQ through allied fields and the rapid response of their Epidemic Task Force. He also discusses how ASHRAE Standard 62.1 does not cover infection control and suggests that it could take on a change to address infectious diseases. 

Dr. Bill Bahnfleth is a professor in the Department of Architectural Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. He holds a doctorate in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois and is a registered professional engineer. He is a Fellow of ASHRAE, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, and the International Society for Indoor Air Quality and Climate, and is the author and co-author of more than 170 journal articles and 14 books/book chapters. He has served ASHRAE in a variety of capacities such as, Student Branch Advisor, Vice President, Treasurer, 2013-14 Society President, and is currently the chair of the ASHRAE Epidemic Task Force. His ASHRAE awards include the Exceptional Service Award, the Louise and Bill Holladay Distinguished Fellow Award, the E.K. Campbell Award of Merit for teaching, and the F. Paul Anderson Award–ASHRAE’s highest individual award.

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Dr. Bahnfleth’s background [1:10]
  • Lessons learned from anthrax can apply to COVID [6:59]
  • ASHRAE’s Epidemic Task Force and rapid response [11:55]
  • How the task force is being adaptive to the changing conditions on the ground [18:20]
  • Risk management across disciplinary lines [24:15]
  • Debates on what constitutes safe from COVID-19 for a building or facility [26:18]
  • ASHRAE Standard 62.1 does not cover infection control [27:53]
  • A paradigm shift to reduce risk of disease [33:44]
  • Awareness of airborne disease and the importance of ventilation [37:58]
  • A bad time, but good can come [50:17]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

We can and must design HVAC systems to be effective at controlling IAQ hazards, whether chemical, particulate or biological, while also being energy-efficient and cost-effective.”

“I was brought up believing that professional service was part of being a professional, working together in a non-competitive way to address society’s issues and better humanity.”

“ASHRAE’s Epidemic Task Force is comprised of over 130 people plus liaisons from other organizations. We managed to produce about 400 pages of guidance in a matter of a few months.”

“Having a risk management plan is not the same as putting together an interdisciplinary team, interacting with them, understanding varied points of view, and coming up with solutions.”

“ASHRAE Standard 62.1 has a definition of IAQ from building and occupant-generated contaminants, not the level of control required to reduce the risk of an airborne infectious disease.”

“The ASHRAE strategic plan is emphasizing indoor environmental quality and resilience. I see the ability for a building to adapt IAQ control in an epidemic disease as resilience.”

“We need coordination between standards like 90.1 and 62.1 to support IAQ, health and productivity, without damaging our efforts to decarbonize and to get to net-zero for buildings.”

“We need a paradigm shift in building ventilation systems. We’ve developed a high tolerance for getting sick in buildings and a tendency to act like there’s nothing we can do about it.”

“It’s a bad time we’re going through, but it’s had some good consequences like bringing people together, stimulating scientific and technical inquiry. Let’s come out better for it.”

Healthy Air Episode #18

Episode #18
AI, Sensors, and Building Performance Data | Adam Taylor

In this episode, Adam talks about the clean air options for office buildings and the clean air concerns in schools. He also discusses two exciting emerging IAQ technologies, sharing his opinion on the use of bipolar ionization.

Adam Taylor is the CEO of ARM Environments and the Chief Innovation Officer for AirRated. Since completing his Mechanical Engineering degree, Adam has spent 17 years working in the HVAC industry. Early in his career, he worked as a mechanical design engineer, designing domestic heating systems and bespoke air distribution systems for high-profile projects such as venues for the 2012 London Olympic Games and preserving the Mary Rose Tudor warship. In 2016 he began promoting the adoption of the soon-to-be-released Building Bulletin (BB) 101 guidelines, a revolutionary standard designed to improve air quality and thermal comfort in schools by implementing demand-controlled heat recovery and natural ventilation solutions. Starting in 2018, Adam has been working internationally in the emerging field of indoor air cleaning technologies.

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Adam’s background [1:08]
  • Do engineers appreciate the EHS considerations of IQ and vice versa? [5:54]
  • What ARM Environments and AirRated are focused on [7:36]
  • How is IAQ different from other terms used for indoor air quality [10:36]
  • How to achieve the AirRated standard [11:59]
  • Why governments seem reluctant to act in the area of indoor air quality [16:16]
  • Are employers and private entities taking IAQ seriously [19:39]
  • Have we made progress on IAQ since COVID? [21:17]
  • Do lab results equal real-world efficacy? [23:03]
  • Clean air options for office buildings [25:49]
  • Clean air concerns in schools [28:04]
  • Mitigating high-risk parts of a hospital [28:47]
  • Cleaning the air in food processing plants [30:24]
  • Two exciting emerging IAQ technologies [31:42]
  • Bipolar ionization controversy: does it work? [33:48]
  • Lasting impacts from the pandemic [37:32]
  • How Adam stays on top of the market [40:13]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

Air cleaning solutions can be easily tested in a lab. How that translates to a building is far more tricky. Anecdotal evidence is not the same as deployment and real-world testing.”

“Real-world testing is slow. The UK is currently testing indoor infection mitigation in 30 schools with both HEPA and upper room UV systems. In 18 months, we will know the results.”

“Good air changes are very important in an office building with fixed workstations, but also knowing how the air is moving and controlling the air direction within that space.”

“There’s an interesting concept coming out of Europe, which is personal ventilation. You’ve got a nozzle feeding you with the small amount of very clean air that you need to breathe.”

“For healthy schools, we need to reduce levels of CO2 and particulates. Filter the air that’s coming in plus a secondary reduction with local filter units or bipolar ionization.”

“The most exciting IAQ advancements are around sensors and data, bringing AI in to learn how a building performs, how the occupants perform, under different levels of air quality.”

Healthy Air Episode #17

Episode #17
Indoor Air Quality Is Worse Than Outdoor Air | Paul Scialla

In this episode, Paul Scialla talks about the value proposition of real estate and health. He discusses the best IAQ technology for healthy classrooms and the IAQ factors in overall health and wellness. He also speaks about wellness as a defined category in real estate.

Paul is the Founder and CEO of Delos, a company merging the world’s largest asset class – real estate – with the world’s fastest growing industry – wellness. After 18 years on Wall Street, including 10 years at Goldman Sachs as a Partner, Paul Scialla’s interest in sustainability and altruistic capitalism led him to found Delos. Since the company’s inception, Paul has become a leading voice in the wellness and sustainability movements, serving as a keynote speaker at prominent green building, real estate, and technology forums and conferences around the world. Paul is also the Founder of the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), which administers the WELL Building Standard globally to improve human health and wellbeing through the built environment, a member of the Board of Directors for the Chopra Foundation, and a founding board member of the JUST Capital Foundation. Paul graduated from New York University with a degree in finance and currently resides in New York City.

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Paul’s background [0:59]
  • Thought leaders converge for health & well-being [3:54]
  • The WELL Building Standard rooted in science [4:48]
  • Wellness as a defined category in real estate [5:58]
  • LEED and WELL as complimentary certifications [7:50]
  • The value proposition of real estate & health [9:04]
  • Delos’ mission and focus [10:33]
  • IAQ factors in overall health & wellness [13:40]
  • Best IAQ technology for healthy classrooms [16:18]
  • How the pandemic has impacted Delos [18:50]
  • Communicating and bringing general awareness [22:26]
  • Are people prepared for combating the pandemic over the next several months [24:08]
  • How Delos stays on top of the market [25:52]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

I’m not a doctor. I’m not an architect. But getting those two fields together helped bring forth an understanding of better indoor environments and the impact on human health.”

“Delos developed the WELL Building Standard to connect the built environment with the impact on respiratory, cardiovascular, immune, cognitive, digestive, and sleep health outcomes.”

“Health and wellness innovations have been infused into just about every consumer product category. Why not real estate? The homes we buy, the offices we spend 8-10 hours a day in.”

“We saw the LEED playbook with regard to environmental sustainability and wanted to take the best components of that and replicate it for human or biological sustainability in WELL.”

“This was an economic value proposition that happened to come with a tremendous societal platform. Using our real estate to introduce preventative medical intentions seemed obvious.”

“Human health and wellness in the built environment needs to be positioned as a right, not a privilege.”

“Well Living Lab is a 50/50 founding collaboration between Mayo Clinic and Delos, a research facility driving evidence-based health and wellness in the built environment.”

“Through the years, we’ve learned that indoor air quality tends to be two to five times worse than outdoor air quality. You’re not hiding from pollution by going inside.”

“We built a classroom with desks, chairs, manikins and cough simulators with top aerosolized particle experts in the world to scientifically test pre- and post-intervention efficacy.”

Healthy Air Episode #16

Episode #16
Preventing Hazards in the Indoor Environment | Loren Witkin

In this episode, Loren Witkin talks about pandemic and post-pandemic IAQ issues. He discusses the tension among two big themes in the built environment, how they respond to wildfire-related challenges, and how to prevent indoor hazards.

Loren is the CEO of Citadel EHS and founded the company with the goal of creating an employee- and client-focused consulting firm that fused a thorough understanding of the built environment within the fields of environmental, health, and safety (EHS). As part of his vision to bring all employees into ownership roles, Loren drove the formation of the firm’s ESOP in 2003 while simultaneously overseeing all phases of corporate development, client management, and complex project management across multiple disciplines. A creative and focused leader, Loren has 30+ years of experience in the EHS industry, both in the public and private sectors, with numerous state, federal, and industry accreditations and certifications to his name. During his career, Loren has served as a panel member, speaker, and presenter on various EHS matters to universities, public agencies, cities, school districts, and industry conferences nationwide. He held tenure at UCLA as one of the first asbestos/lead program managers in California, where he developed policies relating to the identification and remediation of environmental contaminants for 17+ million square feet of property. He is also a founding corporate member of UCLA’s Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, a member of the Los Angeles Downtown Breakfast Club, and of the Urban Land Institute. 

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Loren’s background [1:10]
  • What motivated Loren to found Citadel [5:24]
  • Citadel EHS’s mission and focus [8:59]
  • Citadel EHS thinks of their competition as collaborators [10:16]
  • Pre-pandemic and post-pandemic IAQ issues [11:33[
  • Pandemic drew attention to air quality issues [13:41]
  • Critical collaboration between service lines [15:12]
  • Employee and tenant retention are top concerns [18:05]
  • Wildfire-related challenges and key questions [24:35]
  • Challenges and opportunities on the horizon [27:20]
  • Tension among themes in the built environment [33:04]
  • Loren’s predictions on building technology changes in the next ten years [35:36]
  • How Citadel EHS stays on top of the market [37:49]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

Citadel is an employee-owned and client-focused consulting firm that fuses a thorough understanding of the built environment within the fields of environmental, health, and safety.”

“Citadel is 100% employee-owned. We want to share what we make with those that make it, and that includes everyone. Our roles may be different, but they’re equally as important.”

“I think highly of our competition, and I use competition loosely because I think there are a lot of ways that we can collaborate, to extend our geography or skill base for example.”

“What changed with the pandemic is that the indoor environment became much more important. There were real health issues associated with the spread of diseases and pathogens.”

“Whether the hazard is biological, physical, or chemical, ventilation is crucial. And understanding your building’s systems is crucial for the prevention of these issues.”

“Focus on indoor air quality overlays all of our service lines, ensuring a complete, integrated set of services for our clients. Collaboration between various practice areas is key.”

“Employers are concerned about retaining and recruiting staff. They want to articulate what they’ve done to ensure safety in the work environment, but what are the best options?”

“Wildfire-related challenges are certainly impacting our clients. We can’t control the situation, but we can control how we prepare and respond with some key questions.”

“Two big themes within the built environment are 1. Sustainability and 2. Health and Safety. Where are these two trends aligned? And where is there tension? And what can be done?”

Healthy Air Episode #15

Episode #15
Data Sharing Is The Name Of The Game | Ronald Ro

In this episode, Ronald Ro talks about healthy energy-optimized homes and the importance of sharing information. He discusses the human component of sensors and data resources. He also shares how they help consumers and business users understand their air quality score and make good decisions to make their spaces healthier.

Ronald Ro is the Chief Commercial Officer and Co-founder of Awair. He is passionate about building products that inspire. After serving his career as an Engineer at the Boeing Company, Ron worked for Samsung’s Consumer Electronics Division and its Corporate Strategy Office for four years, leading the company’s new business and technology commercialization efforts. Ron then joined Cisco’s Emerging Technology Group and was instrumental in launching, building, and scaling new products. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University, a master’s degree in Industrial and Operations Engineering, and an MBA from the University of Michigan. 

Keeping air safe has never been more important. Now that we are in the next normal, it is critical that the air we breathe in shared indoor spaces is healthy and safe for continued occupancy. Are we ready to face this challenge and mitigate airborne exposure risk indoors? Welcome to Healthy Air, a podcast that talks about the future of buildings and how to keep air safe and healthy. Keep up with the latest industry trends, latest technologies, and regulatory changes with your host, Erik Malmstrom, industry experts, and the SafeTraces team here on Healthy Air.

SHOW NOTES:

  • An overview of Ronald’s background [1:26]
  • Awair’s mission and focus [5:35]
  • Hardware and software data overview [7:05]
  • Good decisions require more than just data [9:00]
  • Data sharing is the name of the game [11:47]
  • Helping you understand your air quality score [14:14]
  • Ronald’s predictions on building technology changes in the next ten years [19:43]
  • How COVID-19 affected Awair [22:39]
  • ASPIRE Group [27:27]
  • The future of IAQ [28:42]
  • The future of sensors [32:52]

RESOURCES:

QUOTES:

My daughter was born with a respiratory issue, and I became triggered about air quality. Purifiers, humidifiers, anything we could do to mitigate the issues that were happening.”

“There is so much talk about making buildings tighter for energy efficiency. But what’s next for the occupants? As we optimize for energy, how do we keep our homes safe and healthy?”

“We measure 7 components of air quality, but we offer more than data. Our focus is to help all stakeholders collectively make good decisions in keeping our spaces healthy and safe.”

“Awair goes the next step in not just providing data, but then taking it a few steps further to ask, What does this mean for an individual, for their personal health and well-being?”

“Data sharing is the name of the game. The most forward-thinking clients understand the importance of sharing information, and it gives them an advantage over the competition.”

“We came up with a “0 to 100” score that could give people an easy way to digest what they’re being exposed to. Below 60 is the danger zone, and you need to take action immediately.”

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