Development of WHO guidelines for indoor air quality



Report of a working group meeting held in Bonn, Germany, on 23-24 October 2006

Indoor air quality has a special role as health determinant, and management of indoor air quality requires different approaches than outdoor air.

Based on this consideration, the group of experts working at the Global Update of the WHO Guidelines for Air Quality (WHO, 2006) recommended developing separate WHO guidelines for indoor air quality. To start this activity, WHO convened a working group meeting for the development of indoor air quality guidelines representing scientific expertise in epidemiology, toxicology, exposure assessment, developing country issues, indoor combustion, biological agents, building construction, ventilation and indoor air quality management. The working group outlined the tasks required for the guideline development in 2007-2009, and recommended a list of chemicals for which numerical guidelines could be prepared. It also proposed ways to define guidelines allowing for reduction of health risks due to biological contamination of indoor air and due to indoor combustion of solid fuels.