The goal of the NIBS–IEQ Products & Materials Committee was to develop procedures and guidelines to aid persons in making informed material selections in order to construct a building that will be accessible to persons with multiple chemical sensitivities (MCS) and/or electromagnetic sensitivities (EMS). The NIBS IEQ-Materials Committee has reviewed existing standards and guidance for materials selection in building construction. The group has determined that certain features of the existing standards offer a reasonable starting point for the selection of building materials, and in some respects can offer a more accessible environment to persons with MCS and/or EMS. These existing standards are designed to create healthier indoor air quality by making appropriate building material selections, among other things. Though the existing standards may not result in material selections that will make a building accessible to the majority of persons with MCS and/or EMS, they will produce a healthier building, than one constructed without regard to these standards. Healthier buildings would be useable by people with other health conditions such as asthma and other respiratory conditions, allergies and migraine headaches.
The NIBS IEQ Materials Committee has attempted to take the best ideas or practices from the existing standards and guidelines to recommend material selections that will provide for healthier, more accessible buildings. If a designer follows the suggestions provided herein, it will result in a building that has the lowest chance of IEQ problems stemming from the materials and that has the best likelihood of being accessible to persons with MCS and/or EMS.
The standards reviewed by the Materials Group include: