INDOOR AIR QUALITY: A KEY ELEMENT IN GREEN BUILDINGS IN QATAR
Engineer Meshal Al Shamari, Director of the Qatar Green Building Council (QGBC) shares his views on the importance of indoor air quality in Qatar and the new green technologies and research available for building managers.
Indoor air quality is an essential aspect of the green building sector, the importance of which cannot be overlooked. In Qatar, indoor air quality is a growing concern, especially given the rapid growth and expansion in recent years and on account of the overwhelming amount of time spent indoors due to the harsh desert climate.
All new buildings being constructed in the country strictly adhere to green building standards outlined by the State of Qatar and constantly promoted by Qatar Green Building Council (QGBC), a member of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), with strong consideration given to indoor air quality issues by installing new green technologies and working with indoor air quality stakeholders to ensure green standards are adhered to.
While implementing these standards may present some challenges within rising green buildings, the greatest challenge is implementing these standards in the existing buildings. QGBC is continually working with other industry stakeholders to raise awareness of these challenges in an effort to ensure this issue is addressed in the process of retrofitting.
Spearheading the indoor air quality research in the country, QGBC has established two interest groups dedicated to improving indoor air quality in new and existing buildings in Qatar through education, research and awareness.
In collaboration with the Middle East Facility Management Association (MEFMA), QGBC launched the Facilities Management Interest Group (FMIG) in 2013; an initiative that aims to promote, educate and empower facilities management experts in the area of sustainable practices with indoor air quality being one of the key focus areas.
In addition, the Healthy Building Interest Group (HBIG), also established in 2013, is raising awareness about the importance of healthy indoor environments in the workplace, homes and public indoor spaces.
Comprised of seasoned experts from across the different sectors in Qatar, the interest groups conduct regular research and facilitate awareness projects focused on indoor air quality and sustainable facilities management in Qatar in collaboration with key industry stakeholders.
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