indoor air pollution

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An environmental health problem of dwellings and other buildings in several kinds of human settlement, resulting from the presence of air pollutants, such as emission products of combustion, toxic fumes, etc., and inadequate or inefficient ventilation. Indoor air can become contaminated with emissions from biomass fuels, tobacco smoke, vapors from volatile solvents, carpet adhesives, insulating material, etc. Many large office buildings and multistory high-rise apartment towers are tightly sealed against the elements and rely on heating and air conditioning to control the indoor climate. Indoor air pollution occurs if ventilation is inadequate or inefficient and air stagnates, leading to elevated concentration of carbon dioxide, toxic fumes, etc., to cause the sick building syndrome. Buildup of carbon monoxide from carbon fuel space heaters is far more dangerous and occasionally causes death of an entire family.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology.

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