WASHINGTON - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded more than 30 cooperative agreements totaling approximately $4 million to improve indoor air quality by reducing the environmental health risks of such pollutants as asthma triggers, secondhand smoke, radon, and other contaminants. The goal of these cooperative agreements, selected from 180 applications, is to reduce the environmental health risks from contaminants indoors through demonstrations, training, education, and outreach projects.

"EPA is proud to be working with our partners to improve the health of the air we breathe at school, at work, and at home," said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson.

Most Americans spend about 90 percent of their time indoors, primarily in homes, schools, and office buildings, noted the EPA. But indoor levels of air pollution may be two to five times higher than outdoor levels. To address indoor air issues, these cooperative agreements will:

  • Promote positive indoor air quality management practices in schools nationwide, including holistic approaches to environmental issues;

  • Create awareness and increase actions taken to reduce asthma triggers in the home and encourage the use of an asthma management plan;

  • Educate parents about the dangers of secondhand smoke to their children and increase the number of smoke-free homes and cars;

  • Increase the number of homes tested for radon and built with radon-resistant features, and mitigate radon in existing homes;

  • Increase effective indoor air quality practices in office buildings; and

  • Motivate Americans to improve their home's indoor air quality.

    For more information about the EPA's indoor air cooperative agreement funding, visit www.epa.gov/iaq/aboutus.html#Cooperative_Agreement_Funding.

    Publication date: 10/30/2006