Updates to ventilation plan
McMaster’s Utilities team is working closely with Environmental & Occupational Health Support Services (EOHSS) to ensure that the university ventilation systems are functioning as designed. For the fall, McMaster announced a ventilation plan that involved maximizing fresh air and installing MERV-13 filters in buildings with ventilation systems. Classrooms and lecture halls were inspected to meet ASHRAE 62.1, a standard for indoor air quality. Standalone high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter units were installed in buildings without mechanical ventilation systems.
Though all our current operational classroom inventory meets or exceeds Public Health guidelines, McMaster continually looks for ways to update our ventilation plan to adopt industry guidelines and best practices. This is why McMaster is further enhancing our ventilation plan to include a strategy of measuring the equivalent air changes per hour (eACH) in all classrooms and lecture theatres on campus to ensure they meet a minimum of six eACH. This is considered “Ideal” in the recommended approach outlined in the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s Healthy Buildings for Health guidelines. It is anticipated that this work will be complete by January 10, 2022, in time for the start of the winter academic term. A list of all classrooms and lecture halls, along with the current status of this work can be found on our website.
For classrooms that do not meet our minimum standard of six equivalent air changes per hour (eACH), McMaster is:
- Changing operations or equipment to increase air flow.
- Equipping the space with appropriate standalone high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter units to increase equivalent air changes.
This new measure is being adopted in addition to McMaster’s comprehensive ventilation plan.
More about McMaster’s ventilation plan can be found on the Back to Mac website.