Volatile organic compounds within indoor environments in Australia

Goodman, Nigel B., Steinemann, Anne, Wheeler, Amanda J., Paevere, Phillip J., Cheng, Min, and Brown, Stephen K. (2017) Volatile organic compounds within indoor environments in Australia. Building and Environment, 122. pp. 116-125.

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Abstract

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are pervasive indoor air pollutants. This paper systematically evaluates 25 years (1991-2016) of investigations of VOCs within indoor environments in Australia. Among 31 papers evaluated, the most frequently studied environment was domestic housing (61%), and the most frequently quantified compound was formaldehyde (81%). Active sampling techniques were used in 82% of studies of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX), and in 38% of studies of formaldehyde and other carbonyls. New homes had the highest VOC levels among all studies of domestic housing. For nearly all pollutants, indoor levels were several times higher than outdoor levels. Among the most prevalent compounds indoors were terpenes, such as d-limonene and alpha-pinene. All studies were conducted at a regional or local level, and no study reported statistically representative indoor VOC data for the Australian. population. The evaluation revealed a diversity of sampling approaches and techniques, pointing to the importance of a standard approach for collecting and reporting data.

Item ID: 50655
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: volatile organic compounds, indoor air quality, formaldehyde, BTEX, terpenes
ISSN: 1873-684X
Funders: Australian Department of the Environment and Energy, CSIRO, Land and Water, CSIRO, Oceans and Atmosphere, Centre for Air Quality and Health Research, Australian Department of Education and Training
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2017 10:54
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111705 Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920405 Environmental Health @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970103 Expanding Knowledge in the Chemical Sciences @ 50%
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