Steve Caulfield PE, CIH | Robert Herrick PhD, CIH | Ed Light CIH | Guy Sylvester – Northeast IAQ & Energy Conference Interviews Part 1

Air Date: 4-22-2016| Episode: 411

This week on IAQ Radio The Zman and Radio Joe will be discussing and playing back the first half of our interviews from the Maine IAQ Council 2015 Northeast IAQ and Energy Conference. Bob Krell of Healthy Indoors Magazine and Radio Joe interviewed some of the speakers at the event and we have both audio and video recordings to play back for our listeners and readers…

Full Description:

This week on IAQ Radio The Zman and Radio Joe will be discussing and playing back the first half of our interviews from the Maine IAQ Council 2015 Northeast IAQ and Energy Conference. Bob Krell of Healthy Indoors Magazine and Radio Joe interviewed some of the speakers at the event and we have both audio and video recordings to play back for our listeners and readers. The conference was a great success and every year they draw some of the top speakers in the industry. This week we have Steve Caulfield, P.E., CIH President, Turner Building Science & Design – Harrison, ME | Robert Herrick, PhD, CIH Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health – Boston, MA | Ed Light, CIH President, Building Dynamics, LLC – Ashton, MD | Guy Sylvester
Absolute Resource Associates – Portsmouth, NH.

Z-Man’s Blog:

Northeast IAQ & Energy Interviews Part 1

The yiddish word mensch means “a person of integrity and honor. According to Leo Rosten the Yiddish maven and author of The Joys of Yiddish a “mensch” is “someone to admire and emulate, someone of noble character. The key to being ‘a real mensch’ is nothing less than character, rectitude, dignity, a sense of what is right, responsible, decorous. “The term is used as a high compliment, expressing the rarity and value of that individual’s qualities.” The word has migrated into American English where a mensch is a particularly good person, a “stand-up guy”, a person with the qualities one would hope for in a friend or trusted colleague.

It’s with great sadness that we bid farewell to Butch Carpenter who in both private life and business was a mensch. He was also an innovator and pioneer in the field of disaster repair, who served on the original Water Loss Institute steering committee and hosted a member tour at the first WLI conference in 1996.

Butch by the letter: B: bonus who always provided more than what was expected, U: unconventional, he sought and found better ways to do things, T; technically and mechanically proficient, C: creative and inventive, H: Hero a combat veteran, an example and hero to his children.

The firm he founded Ideal Restoration, Inc. in San Francisco, continues and is in the very capable hands of his daughter Jaclyn.

Butch is survived by his loving wife Michelle and daughters Jaclyn and Nicole.  We interviewed Jaclyn and Butch on Episode 112 of IAQradio on Feb. 13, 2009 and at that time the firm had successfully completed 100,000 sewage losses.

Pete Consigli also had a few words to say about Butch:

Pete is an only child and considers Butch, the older brother he never had.

Pete and Butch first met at carpet cleaning meeting in Long Beach Cain 1983,  where the personal chemistry was good, they bonded and became close friends for 30+ years.

Butch was a no-nonsense guy who lived life on his own terms.

Butch being a soldier brings to mind a question posed to General Norman Schwartzkopf when he was asked what he wanted on his tombstone, his answer was short and sweet: a good soldier, who loved his family and served his country. In the same vein: Butch was a trailblazer, who loved his family and friends and built a sustainable business model in the cleaning and restoration industry that is being carried on by his daughter.

I’ll miss him, he left us too soon, I’m happy to see the business carried on by his daughter.

The remainder of the show was Part One of our interviews from the Maine IAQ Council 2015 Northeast IAQ and Energy Conference. Bob Krell of Healthy Indoors Magazine and Radio Joe interviewed some of the speakers at the event. Bob Krell recorded both audio and video to play back for our listeners and his readers. Part One featured one Steve Caulfield, P.E., CIH, Robert Herrick, PhD, CIH, Ed Light, CIH and Guy Sylvester.

Steve Caulfield, P.E., CIH

President, Turner Building Science & Design – Harrison, ME

Steve Caulfield is President of Turner Building Science & Design, based in Harrison, Maine.  Steve is also the President of the Maine Indoor Air Quality Council.  Steve received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Hartford.

How many years has the MIAQC conference been held now? 18th annual conference. Attendance has fluctuated due to interest in the subject matter. Always had some building science and energy.

What have you learned over the years from attending this conference? Importance of being there in person to networking. Attendees get to see the vendors, new technology. Hope to add some other energy vendors.

Follow-up by Bob Krell- Active engagement if paramount. The reality of face-to-face real world discussions are huge.

Robert Herrick, PhD, CIH

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health – Boston, MA

Dr. Herrick is Past Chair of the American Conference of Governmental Hygienists (ACGIH), and Past President of the International Occupational Hygiene Association.   Prior to joining the faculty at the Harvard School of Public Health, Dr. Herrick spent 17 years at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) where he conducted occupational health research. He has a Doctor of Science in Industrial Hygiene from the Harvard School of Public Health.


Particle emission from 3D printers 3 D are a rich source of indoor air contaminates. Emissions include VOCs and polycyclic compounds. We don’t know everything about the toxicology of the emissions. Little research has been done on the potential hazards. The small size of the particle emissions penetrate and deposit deeply in lungs. The printing process melt ABS rubber resins in a laser and injects them into a printing head. It’s common for the resin to contain unreacted polymers which react during printing. He is surprised such little research has been done around the technology. Unaware of any warning labels. The devices are easy to set up and are commonly found in: labs, classrooms, even community libraries. Can use the printers to make cookies and pizza. NASA is interested in the technology for long range space flights. Buildings can be made with prefabricated concrete. Ozone was an issue in photocopiers which has been overcome. The level of awareness is low among 3D copier users and manufacturers. Articles showing up in literature show levels of small particulate in copy centers are extraordinarily high.

What group determines PEL’s for industry? OSHA promulgates PELs and they are legally enforceable. The PEL numbers date back to the 1960s. The OSHA director recently acknowledged on the OSHA website that some of the early PELs may not be protective today. There are annotated tables on the OSHA website where PEL, TLV, NIOSH REL, California promulgated values can be compared. The OSHA standard is always the highest. NIOSH REL and PEL represent a more contemporary view of the hazards. OSHA spent 20 years updating the new crystalline silica standard.

Other exposure values come into play in litigation because it is known that OSHA limits are high. Anticipation of litigation is one reason OSHA doesn’t update exposure standards more often. TLV and NIOSH don’t have the force of law.

OSHA PELs don’t reflect synergistic effects of chemicals in indoor environments.

Is using a PEL and dividing by say 10 appropriate for IAQ work? No it’s actually a bad idea. In the ACGIH TLV book there are 5 or 6 places where it’s stated that this value is not intended to define unsafe conditions. Would not adversely affect workers (5 days a week 8 hours a day). TLVs aren’t applicable to a residence, the elderly children, women and the immunocompromised.

What are PCBs? Family of liquids 209 individual compounds, biphenyl with substituted chlorine molecules in different positions conjoiners. Some more volatile than others the less chlorinated ones are more volatile, the higher chlorinated ones are less volatile.

How are PCB’s in building caulking regulated? PCB have been used to add flexibility to caulks used between dissimilar building materials which expand and contract. PCB caulk was the top end product were it was commonly specified for use in institutions. Many fluorescent light ballasts with PCBs have been found in New York City schools. PCB also used in paints and industrial coatings. Carbonless copy paper has substantial amounts.

Remediation of PCBs? Sometimes removing primary sources doesn’t resolve the problem. A mixture of primary sources results in secondary sources where PCB have evaporated and are later found in ceiling tile, carpet, upholstery, walls, etc.

What are the health risks of PCBs? Carcinogenicity is the primary concern. PCBs recently updated to having the highest risk for causing cancer. Also new research that PCBs are strong endocrine disruptors and potent developmental toxins. Primary schools can be a perfect storm for PCB exposure.

PCBs have been outlawed since 1977, TSCA banned the production. Most PCBs produced still remain in the environment. PCBs are purely synthetic chemical, as they aren’t produced naturally they are environmentally persistent. PCBs can build up in food sources such as fish, the inhalation exposure of OCBs is a new finding.

Is ACGIH still publishing any documents similar to the Bioaerosols Assessment and Control Book? The book is still valid reference. The committee has been reorganized and will be creating a new volume. A new book was released in February on doing indoor air investigations.

Ed Light, CIH

President, Building Dynamics, LLC – Ashton, MD

Ed Light is the President of Building Dynamics, LLC, industrial hygiene and mechanical engineering consultants specializing in Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ).  He holds degrees in Environmental Science from the University of Massachusetts (B.S.) and Marshall University (M.S.), is a Senior Fellow of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA)

When is sampling appropriate on IAQ projects? Objectively, sampling is not needed to resolve most problems. Trend of many IAQ practitioners to start grabbing general samples during an investigation, general sampling more often than not misleading and not helpful

Role of sampling to answer questions about complaints and the building. Consider sampling only after an initial general investigation has narrowed the focus and the data is need to answer a question. Then set up a site specific strategy that is relevant to the problem. The vast majority of sampling doesn’t meet these criteria. You get numbers that lead to incorrect conclusions, false positives and false negatives.

Temperature, RH and CO2 readings are only a snapshot of conditions. Conditions change, spot measurement doesn’t tell you if you are OK or not. CO2 levels are meaningful only if they can be used to get a sense of the ventilation rate. CO2 is only a measure of ventilation during several hours of full occupancy.

Smoke residue after fires is very prevalent contaminate for which there are no testing standards or proven protocols and is the focus of our recent work. Exposure can be a health issue, an annoyance issue and damage property. Traditional procedures, visual wiping, no smoke odors, determine if a site is restored.. Good restoration and source removal works,

Magic silver bullet machines don’t work for IAQ. Air machines scrubbing and putting stuff into the air that is more harmful than what they are pulling out.

Licensing- He’s against it. Its government at its worst. Its crony capitalism that helps certain practitioners and training companies. Mold isn’t a hazardous material. Mold problems can often be resolved without expensive experts and workers. Common sampling strategies don’t answer the basic questions. State laws are requiring testing, consultants and testing. It’s not rocket science, everyone doesn’t need to be trained and licensed. Licensing doesn’t protect consumers. Anyone with a license is now an expert and can get involved with complex moisture and building related and health issues way beyond their capabilities. Many IEQ practitioners don’t understand how buildings work. Our company used to solve big problems in Texas and Florida and now we are shut out because of mold licensing. I refuse to take their licensing courses. We had to pay $1000 per employee to take a course taught by a high school kid who had no prior field experience to get a mold license. A success story, we helped overturn the Virginia, but now DC has passed a mold licensing law.

Licensing works against consumers. With a little detailed info and guidance a handyman or maintenance person and with little experience can do mold remediation. Mold remediation shouldn’t always be such a big hassle and cost so much. For large and complex water losses and complex mold issues consumers should hire an experienced restoration company, not a new wave company with expensive TV ads.

Guy Sylvester

Absolute Resource Associates – Portsmouth, NH

Guy Sylvester is CEO of Absolute Resource Associates (ARA) in Portsmouth, NH, an environmental services firm providing Laboratory Services, Indoor Air Quality Services and Environmental Project Management.  Guy currently is the Chapter Director for the Manchester New Hampshire Indoor Air Quality Association, serves on the New Hampshire and Northeast Board of Directors of the American Lung Association, and is on the National Board of Directors for the American Council for Accredited Certifications (ACAC.).  He is co-founder of the NH Mold Task Force, co-author of Senate Bill 125 (Mold Legislation in NH).

Do you feel mold inspectors and/or remediators should be required to have a state license if so why?

Took 8 years ago to get licensing and consulting approved. Directed to put together a task force of stakeholders, wanted to write and publish the minimum standard of care. American Lung Assn. has lobbyist. Final law: if you are collecting samples must be 3rd party mold certified, to write a spec or protocol must have 3rd party certification, background check, review of application and projects

Repercussions for poor work board of peers. Language specific to ACAC mold certification. Remediators don’t need a license if not collecting samples or writing protocols. Landlords are currently exempted. Licensing varies by state. Consultants were tired of people taking samples and not providing specifications. Looking for consumer protection. Saw an opportunity to do something positive for consumers in the state of NH.

Passed IAQ legislation for schools, cleaning chemicals, products being brought in by teachers. Developed a classroom checklist that must be used at the beginning of each school year.

Follow-up Bob Krell: Kneejerk licensing reaction is specific to mold, what about bacteria, etc.

There is legislation to chemicals, asbestos, lead, radon.  Black toxic killer toxic mold.

Licensing can be a slippery slope, other industries need to answer that question for themselves.

Today’s music:

Taps, U.S. Army Band Music. YouTube   &   The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Theme. YouTube

Z-Man signing off


Trivia Question:

Name the first place in the United States to receive the morning sun?

Answer: Eastport, Maine