ASHRAE Addresses Ventilation in Smoking Spaces

At their annual summer meeting this year in Honolulu, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers made some formal decisions about how to address the issue of ventilation design in spaces where smoking occurs.

08/05/2002


At their annual summer meeting this year in Honolulu, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers made some formal decisions about how to address the issue of ventilation design in spaces where smoking occurs.

The society published an addendum to their primary ventilation standard, ASHRAE 62-2001, Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality , which sets minimum ventilation rates and other requirements for commercial and institutional buildings.

The addendum (62o) offers design guidance for controlling odor in smoking spaces, allowing designers to determine the additional ventilation necessary beyond what would be provided in a similar nonsmoking environment. According to Andrew Persily, chair of the ASHRAE 62 committee, the typical increase in ventilation would be about 10 to 40 cfm greater per person than a similar nonsmoking space.

At the same time, the society has decided not to address the odor and health effects associated with environmental tobacco smoke in the future version of their Standard 62.1P, Ventilation and Acceptable Indoor Quality in Commercial, Institutional and High-Rise Residential Buildings . Instead, the standard will only apply to nonsmoking spaces.

"This standard is an engineering design document for ventilating indoor spaces and is not intended to be a source of information on health," says Richard Hayter, a member of ASHRAE's Board Policy Committee on Standards. "References to the health effects of tobacco smoke are outside the purpose of the standard."

The committee did recommend, however, that a separate publication, which will be neither a standard nor a guideline, be written to provide design guidance for spaces where tobacco smoke is present.

Even though Addendum 62o already provides some guidance for removing odors, it does not address health effects. Also, because the information is in the form of an appendix, it is provided for information only and is not required for compliance.

Another proposed addendum (62g) would create requirements for classification, signage and separation of areas where smoking is permitted. This addendum is currently in the approval process.

For more information, visit the ASHRAE web site at: www.ashrae.org .





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