UO researchers to study building health
By Suzanne Stevens, Sustainable Business Oregon
Sustainable Business Oregon
Ever wondered just how much healthier a sustainably constructed building is than one built using standard construction practices? Three University of Oregon professors may soon have some answers.
Biology professors Jessica Green and Brendan Bohannan and architecture professor G.Z. "Charlie" Brown will use a $1.8 million grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to study the microbial ecology of indoor environments.
The objective of the research is to understand how human health is impacted by both pathogenic and beneficial micro-organisms inside buildings.
"Every single thing in a building affects the biology inside," said Brown in a press release. "Radiation, ventilation, building materials, lighting, temperatures, humidity, really everything, all are important. Of crucial importance is our understanding of the link between sustainable, or green, design practices and indoor microbial diversity."
Brown directs the UO Energy Studies in Buildings Laboratory and is a former winner of the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership Award for Research. He is also a participating faculty member in the Oregon Built Environment & Sustainable Technologies Center, a nonprofit established by the Oregon Legislature to focus on sustainability, natural resources and renewable energy.
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