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hrai1 22102021

HRAI has established an Expert Advisory Panel on Indoor Air Quality in commercial and institutional buildings.  With businesses, educational institutions and governments all trying to understand the most efficient and safest ways to return to near-normal conditions that will support the social and economic well-being of Canadians over the months ahead this group will produce easy-to-use and understand materials on the best practices currently in place to limit the transmission of COVID-19 through HVAC systems.

Over the past few months, governments at all levels, as well as school boards, and commercial business operators consulted a limited pool of knowledge to make choices about re-opening facilities following months of physical distancing restrictions. The HRAI panel will help to make the needed technical information more accessible and readily available. Understanding and addressing ventilation concerns can help to ensure safety while resuming more regular activities during the pandemic. Following the pandemic, any new investments or improvements will continue to provide benefits by making living and working environments healthier, as a result making families and workers more comfortable and productive.

Chaired by Joe Muchynski, Arvin Air Systems, and member of the Contractors Division Board, the panel includes members from each of the three member divisions as well as representatives from the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA), the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), the National Research Council (NRC), the University of Toronto and University of Alberta, the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), and the Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI).

“Over the months ahead we will work together to make sure Canadians have better information about the risks of transmission in an array of environments and conditions,” said Chair Muchynski. “We want to ensure business owners, building managers, and institutional administrators can confidently assess risks and make good choices for indoor environments while navigating the impacts of the pandemic.”

In addition to Mr. Muchynski, the panel includes the following individuals: Allan Haybarger, General Filters; Gerry Cellucci, Yorkland Controls; Jim McAughey, Standard Mechanical; David Underwood (retired), Past International President of ASHRAE; Joel Primeau, J.L. Richards; Francis Dietz, AHRI; Bala Gnaman, BOMA-Toronto; Dr. Jeffrey Siegel, Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Toronto; Dr. Brian Fleck, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Alberta; Dr. Boualem Ouazia, Research Officer, National Research Council of Canada; Joe Tanelli, Director of Engineering Science and Support, PHAC; David Barnes, Biocontainment Engineer, PHAC; Rob LeForte, Impact Public Affairs; Kyle Larkin, Impact Public Affairs; Niss Feiner, Delta-T Design (Council Secretariat); and HRAI staff Sandy MacLeod and Martin Luymes.

HRAI thanks these member volunteers and allied stakeholders for participating in this important initiative.

For more information please contact Martin Luymes at 416-453-5899 or email mluymes@hrai.ca.