A few weeks ago, I completed my training and passed an exam to become a RESET Accredited Professional (AP) – one of approximately 500 around the world, and one of 51 offering services in the UK.
RESET is a data standard relating to the monitoring, recording and communication of indoor air quality. By being an accredited professional, I can now advise organizations and help them deploy an IAQ monitoring and reporting set-up that provides credible and independently-verifiable data on several key IAQ parameters, which can then be used to inform decisions on what IAQ solutions to deploy.
All too often, IAQ products and services are offered without sufficient evidence to demonstrate efficacy, or even need. Sometimes, some quite outlandish claims are made and impressive statistics are quoted that might be completely irrelevant to the context of the space concerned (interior landscapers – I’m looking at you. You can’t keep banging on about so-called NASA research on using plants to improve air quality if you don’t know how to measure it).
If you don’t know where to place an air monitor, how to interpret its data or even whether the monitor is accurate, then how can you be sure that your interventions to improve air quality are working? This is where a data standard is really useful.
The RESET approach is not a design standard – it doesn’t tell you what you must put in your buildings to improve air quality. RESET is a data standard. This means that if your organization is RESET certified, then you (and the users of your building) can be sure that the monitors you use measure the key IAQ parameters correctly (carbon dioxide, VOCs, temperature, humidity and fine particulates), and that the data provided by those monitors is handled, recorded and reported securely and impartially.
RESET also requires that IAQ data is made available in real time to the end users of the building (not just the building manager). This empowers users (e.g. office workers) to hold employers to account for the health and safety of their environment and can even help people make their own decisions about adjusting the environment to be more comfortable and healthy.
For me, being a RESET AP allows me to offer genuinely evidence-based solutions to my clients. I know how to set up an IAQ monitoring system, and I can then apply my knowledge of indoor air quality to recommend the most appropriate solutions (or point my customers in the direction of someone who knows better than me).
RESET is aligned with WELL, Fitwel and the Living Building Challenge, so if you are pursuing one of those standards, having a RESET-certified project will allow you achieve the relevant prerequisites relating to IAQ monitoring and reporting.