Indoor Air Quality (IAQ)

Materials used in building construction and conditions resulting from property damage, or even poor maintenance and upkeep, can result in indoor air pollution that could jeopardize a person's health. Many of the sources of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) problems (i.e. formaldehyde, mold, radon, etc.) can be easily prevented and corrected by simple measures. Therefore, to help homeowners and business owners recognize and correct problems they may be experiencing, the following sources have been pulled together for easy access to useful information and answers to solve indoor air pollution. The information consists of guidance on most IAQ issues, links to home testing kits, and associations of professional consultants should these services be desired or needed. Authorization and resources do not allow the MDEQ to visit homes and businesses to test for indoor pollution, but the agency is striving to be of assistance through the information it is making available here. mold mold mold mold mold mold mold mold mold.

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Hide details for Information on Pollutants & Their SourcesInformation on Pollutants & Their Sources
Information on Pollutants & Their Sources
Show details for AsbestosAsbestos
Show details for Asthma & AllergiesAsthma & Allergies
Show details for Biological contaminantsBiological contaminants
Show details for Household Cleaning Chemicals and SpraysHousehold Cleaning Chemicals and Sprays
Show details for Carbon Monoxide (CO)Carbon Monoxide (CO)
Show details for FormaldehydeFormaldehyde
Show details for LeadLead
Hide details for InsulationInsulation

Symptoms from Fiberglass will typically go away after being removed or encapsulated. Fiberglass is not regulated and is widely used, but should not be breathed. There are some alternatives to fiberglass insulation (such as polyester and sheet foam). One technical paper concluded that wet spray-applied cellulose insulation (typically 30-40% water), when used in the walls of indoor environments, can become very moldy and result in unacceptable risk to occupants. It is recommended that fiberglass insulation be kept neatly contained (not hanging out) and use proper personal protective equipment to avoid exposure during installation or maintenance activities. Replace ceiling panels and repair disconnected ventilation ducts if needed.
Hide details for MoldMold
Hayfever-like symptoms such as stuffiness, throat irritation, coughing or wheezing, eye irritation, or, in some cases, skin irritation may be the result of a high concentration of mold spores. In worse cases Mycotoxins from molds has been linked to symptoms like headaches, nasal irritation, dizziness, fatigue, and nausea.

Mold needs water and a food source (building materials) to grow. If one removes the water and moisture and keeps it dry, the mold cannot grow.
  • PICTURE LIBRARY (Images available at this site give examples of trouble spots & cleanup apparatus)

Wall with Black mold
  • Book: "Clean Up Procedures for Mold In Houses", can be found at: EEBA Bookstore


Note on Mobile homes.
A few residents have complained about mold growth in their trailers; some of these were less than five years old. The growth was due to water leaking from the metal siding or roof (those that do not have shingles). Any exposed nail or screws in metal siding should be sealed so water does not seep into the wall cavities. Some walls have no barrier to resist moisture between the outer metal siding and inner dry wall sheeting. If a leak is suspected, it may be worthwhile to check the inner wall cavity for mold and correct any problems as soon as possible.
Show details for Air DuctsAir Ducts
Show details for PesticidesPesticides
Hide details for RadonRadon

U.S. Surgeon General Health Advisory

"Indoor radon gas is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the United States and breathing it over prolonged periods can present a significant health risk to families all over the country.  It's important to know that this threat is completely preventable.  Radon can be detected with a simple test and fixed through well-established venting techniques."  January 2005

A Citizen's Guide to Radon: The Guide to Protecting Yourself and Your Family from Radon
http://www.epa.gov/radon/pubs/citguide.html

"Home Buyer's and Seller's Guide to Radon"
http://www.epa.gov/radon/pubs/hmbyguid.html

One may also call the Radon hotline number at the National Safety Council
(800) SOS-RADON or (800) 55-RADON

Compared to other states, most of Mississippi has a low predictive indoor radon screening. Radon levels in Alcorn, Union, Pontotoc, Lee, Chickasaw, Clay, Lowndes, and Noxubee have a medium predictive level. Visit the following site to view radon maps of any state: http://www.epa.gov/radon/zonemap/mississippi.htm

Discounted radon test kits are available from the National Safety Council - 1-800-SOS-RADON ;
Read the section in "A Citizen's Guide to Radon" listed above for a discussion on how to get reliable radon test results.

Schools: The Indoor Radon Program in Mississippi provides free screening for schools in participating areas. Call 1-800-626-7739 or (601) 987-6893.
Hide details for Smoke (Tobacco Smoke and Second hand smoke)Smoke (Tobacco Smoke and Second hand smoke)

Aside from adding a decade to appearance, graying and wrinkling skin, becoming a gruff baritone, morning coughing, staining, stinching, and other annoyances, smoking can have some devastating health affects on everyone in the house especially if combined with other types of air pollution. Refer to the following sites for more information.


Hide details for Air CleanersAir Cleaners
Ozone Generators
http://www.epa.gov/iaq/pubs/ozonegen.html.
Show details for Vapor IntrusionVapor Intrusion
Show details for Fireplaces, Wood stoves, Wood heaters, Wood boilersFireplaces, Wood stoves, Wood heaters, Wood boilers

Hide details for General IAQ Resources & OrganizationsGeneral IAQ Resources & Organizations
Hide details for EPA ResourcesEPA Resources
EPA IAQ website http://www.epa.gov/iaq/
EPA IAQ publications http://www.epa.gov/iaq/pubs/index.html
Mold Recourse Library http://www.epa.gov/mold/moldcourse/resourcelibrary.html
"The Inside Story: A Guide to Indoor Air Quality": http://www.epa.gov/iaq/pubs/index.html#insidestory

Indoor airPLUS : Design & Building Specifications for the EPA Indoor airPLUS program for homes
http://www.epa.gov/indoorairplus/index.html


U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
National Service Center for Environmental Publications (NSCEP)
P.O. Box 42419
Cincinnati, OH 45242-0419
Website: www.epa.gov/nscep
Phone: 1-800-490-9198
Fax: (301) 604-3408
E-mail: nscep@bps-lmit.com

Note: NSCEP operates a Toll-free phone service for EPA Publication Assistance with live customer service representative assistance Monday through Friday from 9:00am-5:30pm eastern time.

EPA Indoor Air Quality Information Line: Call toll-free number 1-800-438-4318

Show details for Publications on Multiple IAQ TopicsPublications on Multiple IAQ Topics
Hide details for OrganizationsOrganizations

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Show details for Consultants and LaboratoriesConsultants and Laboratories

Hide details for Related IAQ TopicsRelated IAQ Topics

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Show details for Office Building EnvironmentsOffice Building Environments


Show details for Building and RemodelingBuilding and Remodeling

Show details for Flood CleanupFlood Cleanup

For More Information Contact Bryan Williams 601.961.5799
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