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Volatile organic compounds within indoor environments in Australia

TitleVolatile organic compounds within indoor environments in Australia
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsGoodman N.B, Steinemann A., Wheeler A.J, Paevere P.J, Cheng M., Brown S.K
JournalBuilding and Environment
Date Published2017/09
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number0360-1323
Accession NumberWOS:000407184400011
Keywordsair-quality; BTEX; buildings; Construction & Building Technology; domestic exposure; emissions; Engineering; formaldehyde; formaldehyde levels; Indoor air quality; melbourne; pollutants; risk; Terpenes; Volatile organic compounds; western-australia; young-children

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are pervasive indoor air pollutants. This paper systematically evaluates 25 years (1991-2016) of investigations of VOCs within indoor environments in Australia. Among 31 papers evaluated, the most frequently studied environment was domestic housing (61%), and the most frequently quantified compound was formaldehyde (81%). Active sampling techniques were used in 82% of studies of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX), and in 38% of studies of formaldehyde and other carbonyls. New homes had the highest VOC levels among all studies of domestic housing. For nearly all pollutants, indoor levels were several times higher than outdoor levels. Among the most prevalent compounds indoors were terpenes, such as d-limonene and alpha-pinene. All studies were conducted at a regional or local level, and no study reported statistically representative indoor VOC data for the Australian. population. The evaluation revealed a diversity of sampling approaches and techniques, pointing to the importance of a standard approach for collecting and reporting data. (C) 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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