Buildings operations and ETS exposure

Environ Health Perspect. 1999 May;107 Suppl 2(Suppl 2):313-7. doi: 10.1289/ehp.99107s2313.


Mechanical systems are used in buildings to provide conditioned air, dissipate thermal loads, dilute contaminants, and maintain pressure differences. The characteristics of these systems and their operations h implications for the exposures of workers to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) and for the control of these exposures. This review describes the general features of building ventilation systems and the efficacy of ventilation for controlling contaminant concentrations. Ventilation can reduce the concentration of ETS through dilution, but central heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) can also move air throughout a building that has been contaminated by ETS. An understanding of HVAC systems is needed to develop models for exposures of workers to ETS.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Air Conditioning / methods*
  • Air Pollutants, Occupational / adverse effects
  • Air Pollutants, Occupational / analysis
  • Air Pollution, Indoor / prevention & control*
  • Heating / methods*
  • Humans
  • Interior Design and Furnishings
  • Occupational Exposure / prevention & control*
  • Occupational Health
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / adverse effects
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / prevention & control*
  • Ventilation / methods*


  • Air Pollutants, Occupational
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution