Green & Healthy Buildings | Tohn Environmental

Green & Healthy Buildings

Most of us spend more time inside than outside. Designing, renovating and maintaining homes and buildings all create opportunities for healthier indoor air quality (IAQ). We help you find ways to provide clean fresh air and incorporate building systems and products that reduce allergens, chemicals, and pollutants for both new construction and existing buildings.

Standards, Specifications

We develop green and health building standards for public agencies, developers, builders, funding entities, homeowners, and architects. We also provide green and healthy spec review and consultation as well green and healthy property management services.

  • Developed healthy homes and IAQ specifications for a Massachusetts residential developer of a green home, the homes were selected as the Boston Magazine Design Home 2008.
  • Provided indoor air quality technical expertise during the development of the Enterprise Foundation’s Green Communities Criteria, in conjunction with The National Center for Healthy Housing. These standards are being used by over 250 developments and 1,100 homes.
  • Directed a team producing guidelines for the US Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR Indoor Air Package specifications.
  • Conducted a green spec review of a multi family renovation project to incorporate IAQ and occupant health construction practices.
  • Prepared green and healthy property management specifications for affordable housing owners and managers in Boston, Massachusetts.
  • Developed nationally recognized Healthy Housing Building Guidelines for The Asthma Regional Council of New England and helped develop technical resources.
  • Member of the US Green Building Council’s LEED-H Indoor Air Quality Technical Advisory Subcommittee (TASC).

Testimonial

Training

We develop and provide training on healthy housing, indoor air quality, and green property management for developers, owners, state and local governments, and green building programs.  Our training is interactive with practical exercises and resources to help students immediately take steps to improve the health conditions in the buildings they construct, finance, own or manage.

  • Developed and delivered healthy housing training for health and housing officials, builders, architects, and property owners. Core trainer for the Healthy Homes Training Center and Network. Frequent speaker and trainer on indoor air quality and housing related health issues.
  • Provided training to private developer’s sales staff to help explain and market their new green and healthy homes which we helped to design.
  • Trained housing rehab program staff and potential funding recipients on healthy homes construction techniques.

Testimonial

Catalyst for Change

We work with clients to design and implement strategies to help you achieve your policy and/or programmatic goals. Often this involves recruiting coalition partners, marshaling key data, and packaging a compelling story.

  • Created regional program promoting healthy housing construction practices to improve indoor air quality, which has led to state and local policy changes improving health conditions in 15,000 existing homes and 3,500 new homes built annually.
  • Secured changes in property management practices among multi family residential property owners that will improve indoor air quality and “green” properties.
  • In conjunction with The National Center for Healthy Housing and Naomi Mermin Consulting, designing and promoting a “one touch” approach to integrate housing and health services (e.g., lead, asthma, injury) across Boston city agencies. (Summary)

Program Development & Evaluation

We provide technical and strategic expertise to structure programs and assess program performance through systematic evaluations. Evaluations help answer the question — Did you achieve your objectives?

  • Provided strategic and technical direction to a multi-disciplinary task force at the Newport Rhode Island Housing Authority to create an innovative healthy housing program to reduce asthma among residents through housing repairs, improved access to health care, and education (Summary)

Testimonial

 

  • Providing monitoring and evaluation assistance to the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative to evaluate the Green Affordable Housing Initiative as part of an ICF Consulting team.

Policy Analysis

We actively monitor and evaluate regulatory, legislative and policy proposals with an eye toward our clients’ objectives. We identify relevant studies and structure analyses to arm clients with the tools necessary to influence policy decisions.

  • Evaluated national green housing programs to assess their performance on indoor air quality and health outcomes. The report helps consumers, public programs, housing developers and those funding projects better understand the health benefits of leading green programs. (Report)
  • Developed comments on emerging green housing policies and proposed regulations for the Asthma Regional Council of New England and The National Center for Healthy Housing.

Research

We work closely with our clients to determine the information needed to bolster policy objectives and obtain funding. We then define and manage research projects to support these requirements, and effectively communicate project results.

  • Managed $750,000 federally funded healthy homes grant evaluating the health benefits to asthmatic children of housing repairs to address asthma triggers (moisture, mold, pests, dust, and other allergens).
  • Directed innovative pest control project in multi family housing to tackle a chronic pest problem using fewer toxic chemicals.
  • Documented asthma rates among homes receiving energy efficiency services in Maine.

Resources

General Healthy Housing
Alliance for Healthy Homes: Advocacy and consumer information.
Healthy House Institute: Consumer and builder information.
The National Center for Healthy Housing: Consumer, training and research information.
US EPA: Indoor air quality and radon information.

 

Green and Healthy Building 
Building Green: Information on products and materials. Environmental Building News.
Building Science Corporation: Information on building high performing homes, training and consulting services, special expertise on moisture.
Healthy Homes Plans: Plans and resources
Partnership for Advancing Technology in Housing (PATH)
: Information for builders, architects, and others on constructing high performing housing.
Rocky Mountain Institute: Consumer, research and advocacy information. Energy saving factsheets.

 

Energy Conservation 
Alliance to Save Energy: Consumer and advocacy information.
Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) 

 

Green Flooring and Building Products 
Carpet and Rug Institute: Green Label and Green Label Plus carpet.
EFI: Fans, lighting and other products.
GreenSeal: Green rating system for building finishes, cleaning supplies etc.
Resilient Floor Covering Institute: FloorScore green rating system.

Green & Healthy Buildings | Tohn Environmental