DUBAI, UAE, 26 November 2020: The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) to the health and welfare of building inhabitants, Eurovent Middle East said through a Press release. Insufficient air filtration and ventilation have proven to increase the risk of airborne viral transmission in closed spaces, Eurovent said. While the need to improve IAQ has always been a public health priority, it is now an urgent necessity, with far-reaching economic and employment impacts, it said. To ensure the safe operation of buildings, improvements to ventilation and air filtration systems need to be placed in focus, it added.
The industry association announced it has published a Position Paper in which, on behalf of the HVACR industry, it is calling on governments to initiate retrofitting measures for public buildings and to provide incentives for retrofits in the private sector. The energy savings achieved with better HVAC installations will enable a return on investment within a short period of time, while improvements in ventilation has been proven to have an immediate impact on reducing exposure to airborne pathogens, Eurovent said through the paper.
It highlighted how Germany recently provided funds of EUR 500 million to upgrade ventilation systems in all state-owned buildings, including offices, schools and hospitals, and this measure is expected to lead to significant improvements of IAQ while stimulating the economy by providing jobs and projects to the building and ventilation industry. A similar approach in the Middle East would equally create multiple benefits for governments, the economy and society, Eurovent said.
Tariq Al Ghussein, President, Eurovent Middle East, said: “The events of 2020 have shone a spotlight on IAQ in our built-environment, and this presents us with a clear opportunity for progressive change. Retrofitting in the region has historically gained traction for energy conservation reasons. However, its ability to improve ventilation, and the provision of safe, clean air should now become a key focus. Supported by a framework of incentivisation and acceleration, retrofits could be a key driver for healthier and cleaner built-environments, helping to improve energy efficiency as well as ventilation and filtration in the region.”
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