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green during construction
Green During Construction .

The goal of the project is to encourage institutions, developers, designers, and professional organizations to adopt a Green during construction pledge to the benefit of the surrounding community, workers and visitors on the site by reducing emissions, particulate matter, dust and silicates, and toxic gases, like CO.

the construction phase
the construction phase.
  • The Green Building Movement [LEED, Green Global, NEEP High Performance Schools] focuses on energy efficiency and using less toxic products from the perspective of future occupants of a building.
  • Our initiative proposes to include air quality issues while structures are being built, the construction phase.

Rajendran (2009) no significant difference in injury rates (LEED vs non-LEED)Gambatese (2009) “blind spot” in sustainable design practice when it comes to worker safety and health

  • Health – limited mention

IEQ credit 4.1 for Low emitting materials

“To reduce the quantity of indoor air contaminants that are odorous, irritating, and/or harmful to the comfort and well-being of installers and occupants”

    • (LEED 3.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4) Construction Air Quality lacks specificity
green globes
Green Globes

Green Building Initiative

  • Addresses dust exposures and diesel fumes
  • Adopted by ANSI [American National Standards Institute] for Commercial buildings
gdc benefits
GDC Benefits
  • Reduce exposure to

exhaust products

          • Carbon Monoxide
          • Diesel
  • Reduce Exposure to Dusts/ Silica
  • Reduce site specific production of greenhouse gases (CO2)
air quality issues diesel exhaust
Air Quality Issues: diesel exhaust

Diesel exhaust consists of

gases and particulate

matter (soot).

The gas portion of diesel

exhaust contains, nitrogen

oxides, sulphur oxides, and

PAHs (polycyclic aromatic


The particulate fraction (PM) of diesel exhaust is mainly

elemental carbon, organic material (including PAHs), and

metallic compounds. The soot particles or clumps of particles

provide surfaces on which the gas chemicals can hitch a ride.

As you breathe in these particles the gases go along for the


air quality issues diesel exhaust1
Prolonged exposure to

diesel exhaust probably


the risk of lung and


bladder cancer(?).

Diesel exhaust may

contribute to other

health problems

such as asthma and

cardiovascular diseases.

Air Quality Issues: diesel exhaust

Air Quality Issues: gasoline exhaust

Gasoline powered vehicles and equipment produce prodigious amounts of carbon monoxide (CO), a lethal gas . [ Each year @2,700 CO emergency poisonings (@30 are fatal) from worksites.]

Hypoxia (oxygen starvation) due to acute carbon monoxide poisoning may cause both reversible, short-lasting neurological deficits and severe, often delayed neurological damage, and death.

air quality issues gasoline exhaust
Gasoline exhaust also contain substances [nitrogen oxides, ozone,] that induce several types of pulmonary toxicity.

Three gasoline emissions –{benzene, 1,3 butadiene, formaldehyde -}have been shown each to exceed one in one hundred thousand cancer risk thresholds in Northeast urban areas.

NESCAUM , Evaluating the Occupational and Environmental Impact on NonROAD Diesel Equipment in the Northeast, Mar 2004.

Air Quality Issues: gasoline exhaust
worksite snapshot
In Colorado, 40% (135) of all work-related CO poisonings [1985-1995] were related to the use of gasoline-powered equipment [CDPHE 1996].

Seventeen of the 135 workers poisoned lost consciousness during their exposures, and two died.

Many cases were construction related: concrete-cutting saws (28 workers), power trowels (15 workers), high-pressure washers (14 workers), compressors (10 workers), welding equipment (9 workers).

Worksite snapshot
air quality issues dust
Air Quality Issues: Dust

Dust consists of tiny solid particles

formed by a disintegration or

fracture process, such as grinding,

crushing, or impact. A wide range of

particle size is produced. Particles

that are too large to remain airborne

settle while others remain in the air


General dust levels ( Particulates

not Otherwise Classified /Regulated

(PNOCR)) at significantly elevated concentrations may induce irreversible changes to airways and loss of functional lung capacity based on pathology investigations and experimental studies.

crystalline silica
crystalline silica

300 workers die every year

from silicosis, a chronic, disabling

lung disease characterized by the

formation of nodules of scar tissue

in the lungs in the US.

Hundreds more are disabled and between

3000 and 7000 new cases arise

each year.

The industry that leads in premature

mortality (years of potential life lost)

from silicosis is construction.

The International Agency for

Research on Cancer (IARC) has

classified inhaled crystalline silica

as carcinogenic to humans (Group

1) IARC’s highest designation.

silica historical
  • Among the largest industrial disasters in US history
    • Gauley Bridge, WV – 1930-1932
  • Tunnel construction
    • Silica content of the rock - >90%
  • >475 workers died
  • 1,500 were

disabled from

chronic silicosis

{169 Afro American

workers were buried in

a mass grave in nearby fields.}

View of Hawk’s Nest tunnel interior, March 13, 1932

Source: The Hawk’s Nest Incident, Cherniak M, 1986

silica silicon dioxide sio 2
Silica (Silicon Dioxide - SiO2)
  • Respirable particles of silica

(<5 µ in diameter) produced

when crystalline silica-containing

rock and sand is used or processed

    • Mining, milling, and stone work
    • Quarrying and tunnel operations
    • Foundry and boiler work
    • Sandblasting and drilling
    • Pottery and glass making

Photo: NIOSH Safety and Health Topic: Silica

high risk work activities
High risk work activities
  • Chipping, drilling, crushing rock
  • Abrasive blasting
  • Sawing, drilling, grinding,

concrete and masonry and products

containing silica

  • Demolition of concrete/ masonry
  • Removing paint and rust with power


  • Dry sweeping or air blowing of

concrete rock sand dust

  • Jack hammering on concert,

masonry and other surfaces.

fibercement materials
A new increasingly popular concrete-like material used in roof shingles, panel units, floor underlayments,

backerboards, and siding.

Strong. durable, mold and weather resistant, and non- combustible

Hardiplank [35-45%] crystalline silica

Weatherboard [45-55%]

crystalline silica

WISHA Five out of seven cutters

using circular saws

outdoors on fibercement

siding were overexposed

to ACGIH-TLV for silica.

Fibercement materials
green during construction1
Green During Construction

Restrict idling of gasoline and diesel vehicles. [A variety of diesel idling is already prohibited under state law.]

Implement dust suppression controls, especially silica control measures, during construction. [RI DEM has a fugitive dust rule that restricts offsite community exposure.]

Reduce exhaust emissions

idling protocols
Idling Protocols

In selecting contractors {X…. (Hospital, University, Developer) will give preference to those contractors who commit to air toxic emissions reductions strategies such as-

  • a]Turn off diesel engines

on construction equipment

and trucks not in active use.

  • b}Turn off gasoline powered

cars, trucks and equipment that

are idling and not in active use.

idling protocols1
Idling Protocols
  • Locate diesel and

gasoline powered

equipment away from

building air intakes, air

conditioners and


(sensitive receptors.)

dust suppression controls
Dust suppression controls
  • In selecting contractors {X… (Hospital, University, Developer) will give preference to those contractors who commit to air toxic emissions reductions strategies such as-
  • Implement dust suppression controls, especially silica control measures during construction.
dust suppression controls1
Dust suppression controls
  • Water spray or wetting measures

has been shown to

reduce respirable

crystalline silica dust

during various

construction operations


  • General purpose

sprinklers reduce the re-

entrainment of settled

dust on roadways and

other areas.

  • Sweeping compounds reduce dust exposures when rooms under construction are being swept.
dust suppression controls2
Dust suppression controls

Implement a site specific landscaping policy that minimizes destruction to standing foliage, trees etc to reduce both general dust exposures and limit water runoff.

  • Environmental Construction Guidelines US Green, Sustainable Building Technical Manual, Public Technology Inc..

LEED for new construction rating: Create an Erosion and Sedimentation Control Plan during the construction phase, using strategies such as seeding, mulching, earth dikes, silt fencing, sediment traps and basins.

air quality emissions
Air Quality: Emissions
  • In selecting contractors {X… (Hospital, University, Developer) will give preference to those contractors who commit to air toxic emissions reductions strategies such as

Utilize equipment

(stationary and mobile

fleets) that reduce

exhaust products (PM,

CO, NO etc.)

Best diesel retrofit technology

(per Northeast Diesel

Collaborative.) (DPFs) that

contain oxidation catalysts.

However, NO2 increases with highly catalyzed filters with

on-board regeneration. No problems were found with other filters.)

air quality
Equipment use\ (Only use portable gasoline powered generators/equipment that have catalytic converters.)

Electric (battery) equipment in place of gasoline/diesel powered equipment. CO levels can build up rapidly with even a low horse power engine. CO can accumulate rapidly. And “dilute” ventilation (leaving doors and windows open for example) may be inadequate to prevent CO accumulation. Forklifts, scissorlifts, pumps and floor buffers are just some examples of potentially sources of CO.

Air Quality
model contract protocols
In selecting a contractor, ___________will give preference to those contractors who work towards benefiting the surrounding community and workers and visitors on the site by reducing particulate matter, dust and silicates, and toxic gases, like CO. In addition this approach will achieve reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.

Construction shall not proceed until the Contractor has provided a site work plan that includes information on the policies herein.

Costs associated with implementing controls shall be included in the general cost of the contract.

Model Contract Protocols
model contract protocols1
2]Turn off gasoline combustion engines on construction equipment and vehicles not in active use, and on trucks that are idling while waiting to load or unload material for five minutes or more.


Vehicles being serviced, vehicles making deliveries that need to keeptheir engines running (to power refrigerators, for example), and vehicles that need to run their engines to operate accessories;

3} Locate diesel and gasoline equipment away from sensitive receptors (e.g., standing air intakes for adjacent structures.)

Model Contract Protocols
construction protocols
Apply dust suppression controls

Water spray dust control measures have been shown to reduce respirable crystalline silica dust during various construction and mining operations worldwide.

Chipping, drilling, crushing rock

Abrasive blasting

Sawing, drilling, grinding, concrete and masonry

Demolition of concrete/ masonry

Removing paint and rust with power equipment

Dry sweeping or air blowing of concrete rock sand dust

Jack hammering on concert, masonry and other surfaces.

Specially designed equipment removes respirable-size particles from the air, while general purpose sprinklers reduce settled dust on roadways and other areas. Prohibit dry sweeping and using air pressure spray to cleanup.

To reduce dust exposures, use an appropriate sweeping compound and assure that the persons doing the sweeping wear appropriate dust masks and that they are properly trained in their usage.

Construction Protocols
construction protocols1
Construction Protocols
  • All Contractor and Sub-Contractor diesel-powered non-road construction equipment with engine horsepower (HP) ratings of 60 HP and above, which is located or used on the project shall be retrofitted with Emission Control Devices.
  • The reduction of emissions of particulate matter (PM), Oxides of nitrogen (NOs) and hydrocarbons (HC) from diesel-powered equipment shall be accomplished by installing Retrofit Emission Control Devices and by using

ultra low sulfur diesel fuel.

The Emission Control Devices

must be either included

on the Environmental

Protection Agency (EPA)

Verified Retrofit Technology

List (

or be to be equivalent to the EPA standards.

(Northeast Diesel Collaborative ( Diesel Emission Controls In Construction Projects Model Contract Specification

model construction protocols
Model Construction Protocols
  • Gasoline emission reductions can be achieved:
  • Portable gasoline powered generators should be equipped with catalytic converters.
  • Use electric/battery equipment in place of gasoline powered equipment:-

<>Electric scissorlifts replace gas powered.

<>Electric heaters replace propane or gas powered blowers.

supplemental attachments
Supplemental attachments
  • Reduce Noise
  • Evaluate toxicity of materials (adhesives, paints, solvents etc]

[Reduce and substitution]

  • Enhanced safety practices.
anybody doing it
Brown University.

RI Public Transit Agency.

RI Dept of Education’s NECHPS protocol is mandatory for any Local Education Agencies (LEA) seeking reimbursements of design and construction costs from the State include the Green During Construction project as part of the matrix that makes up the NECHPS protocol.}

The World Health organization [WHO] will be putting Green during Construction on their website.

Pat Brady IBEWL99 and RICOSH was invited to discuss the Green During Construction program at-"Making Green Jobs Safe: Integrating Occupational Safety and Health into Green and Sustainability" in December 14 - 16, 2009 Sponsored by Centers for Disease Control/National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and USEPA.

Anybody doing it?
Project partners: {}RI Committee on Occupational Safety and Health

{} American Lung Association of Rhode Island

Organizations that have facilitated project:

US Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Providence Area Office,

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers L99,

United Service and Allied Workers of RI.


Office of Air Resources, RI Department of Environmental Management

Green Power and Light.

National Coalition on Occupational Safety and Health

RI Diesel Coalition.

The Construction Institute Boston MA

NIOSH /CDC Office of Construction Safety

green during construction project q s
Green During Construction Project?Q’s

James Celenza

RI Committee on Occupational Safety and Health

741 Westminster st

Prov RI 02903



Thank you for your attention.