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Lumin-Air focuses on improving air-quality nationwide

Lumin-Air is on a mission to improve air quality across the country. They’ve currently completed projects in virtually every type of non-residential building application. However, they consider the biggest impact they can make to improve people’s health lies in transportation settings. 

Today we were joined by Dan Fillenwarth, president of Lumin-Air, and Andrew Desmarais, chief operating officer of Lumin-air. They say the school bus is the weakest link in a school system’s efforts to keep students and staff healthy. Indiana schools have been given federal money to deal with the issue and they are an Indiana company with a solution that works and is cost-effective. Here’s more from them: 

Three things important things we want you to know about this topic:

1. Respiratory diseases like the flu, Covid, and RSV primarily spread as a healthy person breathes in the droplet nuclei that carries pathogens of an infected person. As a country, the flu has annually cost the United States anywhere from $10B to $78B a year.

2. The personal and economic health of our community is only as good as our weakest link. There is no setting with a higher concentration of people, with poorer ventilation than vehicles.  

3. There are ways to reduce the concentration of pathogens in the air, following simple proven recommendations. The American Society of Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), the CDC, Johns Hopkins University, and others advocate the following for buildings: 

  • increase outdoor air (clean outdoor air) 
  • Improve filtration levels to the highest possible 
  • supplement with UV, especially if it’s not possible to increase outdoor air and improve filtration 
  • only use proven technologies and be aware if you’re introducing something into the air to kill pathogen cells, that people also breathe in these chemicals 

Like the flu, Covid will always be with us. We have to remember that every 3-7 years we’ve had to deal with another global respiratory disease (SARS, H1N1, MERS), and it’s unlikely that Covid will be the last. The annual human and economic impact that the flu alone has can’t be overlooked, and even though Omicron has been less deadly, there was still a huge impact on our economy and tragically on people’s lives, too.  

Opening windows is good on the school bus, but building code calls for outdoor intakes for school classrooms to be a certain distance away from roadways because of the poor air quality on roads. The respiratory systems of children are even more susceptible to these contaminants. Look at any school bus this time of year. The windows are all closed. There are so many hours, especially in the morning that either the temperature or precipitation doesn’t allow for windows to be open. When a child steps onto a school bus, they’re stepping on school property. Why should the air in the school bus, not be what’s required for the classroom, especially when you recognize the density? 

Kids get plenty of exposure to germs. It wasn’t until after a particularly bad cholera and dysentery outbreak in London, that the city separated its drinking water from its sewer system. How much polluted water are you willing to drink? 

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