Online educational resource on achieving indoor environmental quality with radiant based HVAC systems
Not for profit educational resource on indoor environmental quality.
 Bookmark and Share
educational programs on indoor environmental quality

Indoor Environmental Quality: Affects on Productivity, Learning and Energy Efficiency

We'll be expanding our content on this very important topic as it becomes clearer to the architectural and engineering community that all design is human factor design as such IEQ will always trumps energy and aesthetics concerns. It can be demonstrated that when IEQ becomes the focus of design energy efficiency will naturally follow. We'll be discussing this topic at ASHRAE IAQ 2013 Environmental Health in Low Energy Buildings, October 15 - 18, 2013, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

While we develop the pages on this topic, we have received permission from CIBSE to republish an overview of IEQ research on productivity from their Technical Memoranda TM24: 1999. Although the document is well over a decade old the messages are still very applicable.

"Besides addressing thermal comfort and other IEQ issues, buildings and other enclosed spaces are increasingly challenged to provide a healthy environment in an energy efficient manner. The complex relationship between indoor and outdoor environmental conditions, coupled with the impacts of climate change, requires a paradigm shift towards creating buildings that are comfortable and healthy for the occupants yet also energy efficient. Although the goal of improved IAQ and thermal comfort can be achieved by increasing energy consumption, it can also be achieved without significant increase or even with decreased energy consumption." ASHRAE IAQ 2013

As noted recently by Dan In-Hout, "Comfort should always trump energy use. In truth, we are, first of all, in the business of applied biophysics. Doing so using the least amount of energy is not the goal, but part of the process." Engineer’s Notebook: Comfort vs. Energy Use. ASHRAE Journal, vol. 55, no. 7, July 2013

Environmental factors affecting office worker performance

TM24 Environmental Factors Affecting Office Worker Performance:
Review of Evidence

Environmental factors affecting office worker performance provides evidence of how the physical environment affects productivity in the workplace. The guide includes performance measures, staff costs, psychological process and motivation, and the effect of physical factors.


Bookmark and Share

"Cold employees weren’t just uncomfortable, they were distracted. The drop in performance was costing employers 10% more per hour, per employee." Friedman, R., Want More Productive Workers? Adjust Your Thermostat, Psychology Today, July, 2013 

Related Documents

  1. Kim, J., de Dear, R. How does occupant perception on specific IEQ factors affect overall satisfaction? Network for Comfort and Energy Use in Buildings. Proceedings of 7th Windsor Conference: The changing context of comfort in an unpredictable world. Cumberland Lodge, Windsor, UK, 12-15 April 2012. London

  2. Fisk, W.J., Rosenfeld, A.H. Estimates of improved productivity and health from better indoor environments. Indoor Air. 1997;7:158–172

  3. TM40 Health Issues in Building Services (FREE download)

  4. ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 55 Thermal Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy

  5. Education and the Built Environment

  6. ASHRAE Guideline 10, Interactions Affecting the Achievement of Acceptable Indoor Environments

  7. ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62.1, Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality

  8. ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62.2, Ventilation and Acceptable Indoor Air Quality in Low-Rise Residential Buildings

  9. ISO 7730:2005, Ergonomics of the Thermal Environment- Analytical Determination and Interpretation of Thermal Comfort using Calculation of the PMV and PPD Indices and Local Thermal Comfort Criteria.

  10. ISO Standard 7933: Ergonomics of the thermal environment - Analytical determination and interpretation of heat stress using calculation of the predicted heat strain.

  11. ISO Standard 7726: Ergonomics of the thermal environment - Instruments for measuring physical quantities.

  12. Center for the Built Environment, Occupant IEQ Survey Development and Implementation Costs, 2009

  13. Fanger, P.O. 1982. Thermal Comfort. Malabar, FL: Robert E. Krieger Publishing Co.

  14. Frontczak, Monika: Human comfort and self-estimated performance in relation to indoor environmental parameters and building features, 2012.

  15. Temperature Wars: Savings vs. Comfort, International Facility Management Association (IFMA), 2009

  16. Wyon, D.P., Wargocki, P., Effects of indoor environment on performance, ASHRAE Journal March 2013

  17. Friedman, R., 2013. Want More Productive Workers? Adjust Your Thermostat, Psychology Today, accessed July 19th, 2013 <>


Suggested reading:

Do I need an engineer? A Guide to HVAC/Indoor Climate Design Service Providers
HVAC does not equal IEQ
Where will your indoor climate system score?
How to "ball park" your budget for indoor climate control.
Indoor environments: Self assessment
Built to code: What does it mean for consumer thermal comfort?
The Total Comfort System - The "Un-minimum" System
Thermal Comfort: A 40 grit perspective for consumers
Thermal Comfort: A Condition of Mind

Do-It-Yourself HVAC - Should you do it?
The Cost of HVAC Systems - Are You Paying Too Much for Downgrades?
Radiant Installations - The Good, Bad and Ugly
Thermal Comfort Surveys - Post Occupancy, Part I
Thermal Comfort Surveys - Post Occupancy, Part II

For additional support on this topic visit our visitor services page.
Bookmark and Share


Home | Seminars | Solutions | Heating Cafe | Contribute | Online Help | Bean's Blog | About Us | Glossary
Privacy Policy | Legal | Contact Us | Site Map |
Carlson-Holohan Award| Send Us Your Comments

Copyright © 2012 Healthy Heating. All rights reserved.
Site developed by
Donate using PayPal, Credit Cards Accepted