Click HERE for the Workshop Rotation Schedule

The 2016 Conference features more than a dozen workshops to help you and your business create healthy, sustainable indoor spaces.  We have sessions on building science, energy efficiency, investigations, sampling, design and construction, facility operations and management,IAQ and health, risk management, ventilation, marketing, and project management.  No matter how your work connects you to the indoor environment, there is a workshop (or two, or three, or more!) here for you.


Workshop Summaries in Alphabetical Order

Air Source Heat Pumps in Cold Climates: Getting the Most from the Right Equipment

Presented by:  Robb Aldrich, Steven Winter Associates, Norwalk, CT

Air-source heat pumps (ASHPs) heat buildings without on-site combustion or fuels. But how efficient are these systems? How well do they really perform in cold climates?  This session will begin with a brief introduction to new heat pump technologies. We will then review findings from detailed ASHP evaluations around the Northeast and discuss useful resources for selecting and installing ASHPs in New England homes.


Assessment and Mitigation of Misapplied Spray Foam

Presented by:  Ed Light, CIH – Building Dynamics, LLC, Ashton, MD and Henri Fennell, H.C. Fennell Consulting, N. Thetford, VT

Spray Polyurethane Foam Insulation may fail to cure if misapplied, resulting in ongoing odor and health concerns. This presentation will summarize the limited data available on this issue, and discuss site assessment and remediation.

Balanced Residential Ventilation

Presented by Kurt Johnson, Fresh Air Ventilation, Inc. – Lewiston, ME

This session will provide attendees with a complete summary explanation of balanced residential ventilation systems, from concept and design to installation in both in new and existing homes.  Kurt will also provide data on the actual energy consumption of balanced systems.

Can Legislation Help Clean up the Messy Mold Industry? The Road to Mold Legislation in NH

Presenter:  Guy Sylvester, Absolute Resource Associates – Portsmouth, NH

The lack of standards and accountability in the mold industry has been increasingly frustrating to consumers and IAQ professionals alike. That is why Guy Sylvester, CEO of Absolute Resource Associates, and several like-minded professionals in New Hampshire banded together to form the NH Mold Task Force, and worked for several years to try and get mold legislation passed in New Hampshire. NH Senate Bill 125 went into effect on January 1st, and is an important first step toward helping and protecting consumers and mold professionals alike. In this session, Sylvester will tell you why mold legislation is needed, how it will benefit consumers and the industry, and the long road the NH Mold Task Force traveled to get their bill passed in NH

Commissioning Checklist for HRVs and ERVs

Presented by:  Mark Blake, Structuremetrics – Winthrop, ME and Kurt Johnson, Fresh Air Ventilation, Inc. – Lewiston, ME

This session will present a draft commissionin checklist for residential ventilation systems, so that residential building professionals, as well as those evaluating/inspecting existing systems can be sure that systems are installed and working properly.

Comprehensive Air Quality Monitoring

Presented by:  Tom Grillo – Particles Plus, Stoughton, MA

This presentation will introduce the Particles Plus air quality monitors, and highlight the features and benefits that allow a single instrument to monitor in real time for Particulates, multiple simultaneous PM Values, Temperature / Relative Humidity, CO2, and TVOC. View data remotely through a network or the internet, and log sample records in a large data buffer for trending / analysis.


Emerging Environmental Pathogens Affecting the Indoor Environment

Presented by:  Diane Miskowski, MPH, National Legionella Program Manager – EMSL,Cinnaminson, NJ

This session provides an overview of common and newly discovered bacterial, fungal, viral, and parasitic pathogens in water, soil which cause infections in individuals and building and hospital occupants.  Descriptions of sampling methods will be discussed as well as newer genomic analytical methods such as Polymerase Chain Reaction PCR), DNA sequencing and whole genomic sequencing.

Energy Savings and Environmental Control in a Historic Museum: A Building Science Case Study

Presented by:  Steven Caulfield PE, CIH – Turner Building Science & Design, Harrison, ME

A historic museum, built in the early 1900s, experienced escalating energy bills and humidity control issues threatening the condition of their valuable collection. The presentation will highlight the envelope, mechanical, and control installations that vastly improved conditions in the building, while saving energy and maintaining historical elements of the building itself.

Exposure Assessment of 3-D Printer Emissions

Presented by:  Robert F. Herrick, Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA

This presentation will provide an overview of the rapidly emerging technology of 3D printing, and highlights a recent study identifying 3-D printers as significant sources of VOC and fine particle exposures in buildings.  Attendees will learn:   (1) Summary of the printing process for the three most common 3D printing technologies. (2) Potential exposures to 3D printer users. (3) How different printing technologies can affect 3D printer emissions. (4) Control strategies to reduce contamination from 3D printers in indoor environments.  This presentation will be made at an intermediate level and will be of interest to the full range of professionals.  The source of this information is research conducted by graduate students in environmental health.

Heat Pumps and PV: Comfortable, Reliable Affordable path to net zero

Presented by:  Fortunat Mueller, P.E., Revision Energy, Portland, ME

Description: This session will explore the growing popularity of combining high performance air source heat pumps with grid tied photovoltaic (PV) systems as a cost effective path to net zero energy buildings in high performance new buildings. By considering real work examples, we will explore the designs and conditions which make an air source heat pumps suitable for use as primary heat in new construction, as well as when and how to consider the need for backup and/or supplemental heat. We will also review system sizing logic for heat pumps and for solar systems to offset the electrical energy needed to heat in our climate.

High-Performance, Passive Buildings: Comfort and Indoor Air Quality in Airtight Construction

Presenter:  Alan Gibson, G O Logic Architecture and Construction – Belfast, ME

Homes built to code-compliant construction standards suffer from a variety of ills in a cold climate like Maine’s. High energy bills, draftiness, and poor indoor air quality to name a few. Fortunately, there are alternatives today that can greatly improve all aspects of home performance. One such methodology, known as passivhaus, is based on a German standard for energy use in buildings–the most stringent in the world. Passivhaus (or passive house) buildings use a fraction of the heating, cooling, and household energy that code buildings do, and the benefits are clear and compelling: passive homes are more resilient, durable, and comfortable to live in while saving up to 90% on heating fuel.

This session will explain the theory and practice of passive building with the region’s most experienced passive home design and building company. G O Logic LLC built the state’s first certified passive house in 2010 and has completed over 65 passive buildings since then, including a 36-unit ecovillage community in Belfast, a 10-person residence hall on the campus of Unity College (the first certified passive dormitory in the country) as well as the first certified science laboratory in North America. Builder Alan Gibson is a partner in G O Logic, along with architect Matthew O’Malia. Alan will bring his knowledge and expertise in high-performance building to this session to present these learning objectives:

1. Participants will learn the key elements of the passive house standard and how they relate to cold climate performance in residential buildings.

2. Participants will learn design concepts and building methods required to achieve the passive standard, including super-insulated and air-tight building assemblies, high-performance windows and doors, and appropriate mechanicals.

3. Participants will learn appropriate ventilation strategies to achieve high indoor air quality within an air-tight envelope.

This presentation is designed as an overview and primer on passive house design and construction. It is best suited to individuals who have experience with building design and energy use standards at an intermediate level. Information will be based on the passive house standard, ASHRAE ventilation standards, research data, and the presenter’s own real-world experience.

The IAQ Marketing Challenge: Building an Integrated Digital Marketing Strategy

Presenter:  Peter Troast, Founder & CEO, Energy Circle – Yarmouth, ME

Though whole house retrofits are very often the ideal solution to all kinds of indoor air quality problems, energy auditors and home performance contractors are rarely the first call for homeowners acting on these issues. To typical customers and the people who influence them (like doctors), home performance contractors are not yet the obvious solution.

This frames the challenge of marketing both IAQ diagnostic and retrofit services. We’ll directly address this marketing challenge, and identify tactics and approaches to overcome the lack of understanding and awareness that most homeowners have about the root causes of poor indoor air.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Understand the different drivers of homeowner concerns about IAQ.
  2. Learn keywords and concepts that will help direct your messaging.
  3. Identify specific marketing initiatives that can position your company for this opportunity and grow your IAQ-related leads.
  4. Hear about what’s working for contractors out there who are successfully marketing IAQ.


IAQ Radio/Indoor Environments Show!

IAQ Radio Host:  Joe Hughes, President, IAQ Training Institue, xxxx, PA

IAQ Radio is a weekly podcast featuring interviews with experts in the IAQ, building science, and disaster restoration industry.  IAQ Radio Host Joe Hughes, along with Indoor Environments Show manager Bob Krell, will be on-site at this session as they interview some of our notable presenters at the 2016 Conference.  Attend this workshop and hear from 6 of the conference’s most notable presenters about the work they are doing to promote healthy indoor environments:  Sam Rashkin, Ed Light, Paula Schenck, David Shea, Bob Herrick, and Guy Syslvester.  Be a part of the radio audience, and then listen to the broadcast at on Friday, April 15!

Have Your Cake and Eat it Too!  Best Practices for HVAC System Maintenance and Operation for IAQ and Energy Conservation for Commercial Buildings

Daniel Thayer, Thayer Corporation – Auburn, ME

The need for a comprehensive level of preventive maintenance is widely acknowledged as critical for maintaining optimal IAQ and energy consumption. So why is the actual practice for commercial buildings so woefully inadequate? Sadly it’s nearly impossible for a building owner to contract for the appropriate level of service and preventive maintenance without a standard for guidance. This session will examine the industry consensus best practice standards and facilitate implementation of minimum standards for both IAQ and energy costs.

Introduction to Bioparticulates, Mold Testing, & Spore Trap Analysis

Thomas Cheetham, Ph.D., Northeast Laboratory Services – Winslow, ME

A review of the common particles found in indoor air with an emphasis on particulates of biological origin and their possible health effects. An introduction to surface and air testing for molds in an indoor environment and a brief treatment of common indoor molds and mold growth. A discussion of of the fundamentals of the laboratory analysis of spore traps and the interpretation of spore trap data.

Legionella in Building Water Systems – What is Going on Here?

Presented by:  Jack Springston, CIH, CSP, FAIHA –  TRC Environmental Solutions, New York, NY

Legionella is a waterborne bacteria which is capable of causing potentially fatal Legionnaires’ disease (LD), as well as Pontiac Fever.  Public concern about Legionella exploded following the 1976 outbreak at the American Legion conference in Philadelphia, where 221 attendees contracted pneumonia and 34 died.  Since that time, a variety of different control methods and strategies have been developed and implemented in an effort to eradicate Legionella from building water systems.  Many people felt that the problem had been resolved and public awareness and understanding of LD waned.  Despite these efforts, however, the incidence of LD has been steadily increasing for more than a decade.  Reported cases in the U.S. have risen from 1,108 in 1999 to 5,345 in 2015, and the incidence rate has increased by over 350%.  Similar increases have been seen in New York City which saw at least 4 different outbreaks in 2015, the largest of which infected at least 133 people, 16 of whom died.  2015 also saw the release of two important U.S. documents related to Legionella – AIHA’s “Recognition, Evaluation, and Control of Legionella Hazards in Building Water Systems” and ASHRAE’s long overdue Standard 188 “Legionellosis: Risk Management for Building Water Systems”.

This presentation will cover the history of Legionella; the biology, ecology and environment of Legionella and how it inhabits, amplifies and survives in building water systems; and the epidemiology of Legionella.  Additionally, we will discuss the AIHA guideline and provide an outline for professionals to develop evaluation and assessment strategies for Legionella by focusing on source assessment and proactive monitoring to determine the effectiveness of control measures.

Mold and Radon Resistance through Generous Ventilation.

Douglas Steege, VP Business Development, RenewAire LLC

Yes airtight building construction improves comfort and saves lots of energy in the harsh Maine climate.  Unfortunately low air exchange rates can allow the accumulation of excessive levels of humidity, radon and other indoor air pollutants.  Learn how generous amounts of fresh air,  using energy recovery ventilation, can maintain high levels of energy efficiency while exhausting and diluting the buildup of gases that can significantly impact occupant  health and property values.


Net Zero Homes and Indoor Air Quality

Presented by: Karla Butterfield, Steven Winter Associates, Norwalk, CT

A case study presentation of two, single-family homes achieving net zero. Each project used different construction techniques, products, and mechanical systems to get to a similar end result. These case studies focus on the construction from foundation to finishes and highlight the third party testing and verification process

Off-gassing of New VOCs and Old PCBs – Comparison and a Contrast

Presenter:  David Sullivan, TRC Environmental Corporation – Lowell, MA

This presentation compares and contrasts volatile organic compound (VOC) off gassing to indoor air in a newly constructed middle school building with the delayed off-gassing (desorption) of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) originating from high concentration PCB sources abated over time from classrooms in a 40+ year old high school building.
With VOCs, new building materials off-gassing can raise a host of issues with building occupants with complaints about strong odors, adverse physiological responses, aggravation of medical conditions, and concerns about the ‘health’ of the building environment. The data presented should provide builders, designers, and facility managers some expectations for the potential duration of measurable impacts from VOC off-gassing to indoor air following the completion of construction.

In the PCB case, the expectations borne out by the global atmospheric transport behavior of PCBs are realized at the small scale in enclosed spaces with wide varieties of sorption surfaces. Whereas in the global atmospheric transport scenario PCBs move in grasshopper patterns; for example, volatilizing from soil to air in warm weather and adsorbing to materials miles away as temperatures cool. At the building scale, volatilization from source materials (e.g., leaking ballasts, paint, caulk, etc.) and desorption on to other building materials (e.g., polyurethane foam cushions, carpets, etc.), and eventual escape to outdoor air through the ventilation system, takes place. This has led some to opine that indoor air is a relevant source of PCBs to outdoor air as evidenced by the generally higher ambient air concentrations of PCBs in urban centers. However, what the data show is that in a post-abatement scenario, indoor air concentrations of PCBs require extended periods of time to drop below action levels and yield an acceptable remedial outcome. In this presentation, we will focus on several classrooms where the initial PCB building materials abatement did not have the desired effect on indoor air concentrations, so more action and time was necessary to achieve the desired levels.

This presentation is designed for an intermediate level audience and is geared towards consulting professionals interested in ‘real-world’ data illustrating indoor air quality phenomena critical to setting appropriate expectations in the public/private consulting sphere. Others who may benefit from attending the presentation include architects, engineers and building managers who have to deal with VOC off-gassing issues and PCB abatement activities, and potentially impacted building occupants. Source material for the presentation is field and laboratory data collected using United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) methodologies.

Under-Recognized Sources of Indoor Bioaerosol

Presenter:  Jeff May, May Indoor Air Investigations, LLC – Tyngsborough, MA

This presentation will examine sources of indoor bioaerosol, including some that are surprisingly simple to find, such as microbial growth in refrigerator drip trays and others that are more obscure: mold in insulation; bird bloom from feather-filled bedding; actinomycetes from foundations; allergenic fecal material from microarthropods; respirable wool dander from carpets; allergenic bioaerosol from laundry lint; surrogate allergens.

Learning Objectives:

To understand the large variety of potential allergen sources

To understand the possible presence of surrogate allergens

To understand the importance of source sampling

To be cognizant of particle exposures of home occupants to from spray-foam particles

Presentation format:   Individual session, 1 speaker

Presentation method:  Lecture, case study

Presentation level:      Intermediate to advanced

Vapor Intrusion Effects on Indoor Air Quality: Advances in Investigation and Mitigation

Presented by: David Shea, P.E., Sanborn Head & Associates, Concord, NH

Vapor intrusion (VI) of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into residential, commercial, and industrial buildings from subsurface petroleum and chemical contamination continues to present various challenges to indoor air quality professionals, regulators, and property owners. In 2014, for example, the U.S.EPA issued new guidance for short-term indoor air exposure limits for trichloroethene (TCE), and several states are following suit with their own newly developed limits. As a result, demand continues for improved VI assessment tools and methods for protecting against potential VI exposure risks.

Participants in this workshop will learn about the following: 1) what is vapor intrusion and risk factors for buildings being susceptible to VI, 2) most recent U.S.EPA and State guidance
on acceptable levels of VOCs in indoor air, 3) differences in VI potential due to petroleum contamination derived from fuel leaks and chlorinated solvent contamination derived from
industrial activities, 4) confounding effects of background VOC sources, 5) influence of heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) system design and operations on either
preventing or exacerbating vapor intrusion, 6) recent developments in investigation approaches, including real-time field screening/analysis of indoor air samples, controlled
pressure testing of structures, and HVAC shutdown testing, and 7) mitigation methods when VI is suspected or confirmed.

This workshop will be beneficial to any party involved with properties or buildings that may be impacted by contaminated groundwater or soil, including property owners,
developers, building design engineers, attorneys, real estate professionals, regulators, and building occupants.

The workshop will be suitable for basic to intermediate level audiences, but certain topics will be beneficial for advanced audiences too.

Source materials for the workshop will include published technical guidance from U.S.EPA and various states, published technical papers, and the experience of the presenter and the
presenter’s firm.