For over 150 years, carbon dioxide has been an acknowledged indicator of indoor air quality. To estimate the air quality in mechanically ventilated buildings, DIN EN 13779 proposes four different levels of indoor carbon dioxide concentration. However, apart from the early guideline value of 1000 ppm carbon dioxide recommended by Pettenkofer in 1858, there is no actual guideline value for naturally ventilated buildings. Regarding recent intervention studies, the German Working Group on Indoor Guideline Values of the Federal Environmental Agency and the States' Health Authorities therefore recommends the following guide values, based on health and hygiene considerations: concentrations of indoor air carbon dioxide below 1000 ppm are regarded as harmless, those between 1000 and 2000 ppm as elevated and those above 2000 ppm as unacceptable. In addition to the recommendations for TVOC values, this further assists in the assessment of indoor air quality.