WASHINGTON - Filtration systems play a strong role in combating release of biological agents, particularly anthrax and smallpox, according to speakers at the recent American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) satellite broadcastHomeland Security for Buildings.

"High-quality air filtration is a major step for ensuring better protection and a more secure America," said Donald Henderson, M.D., former director of the Office of Public Health Emergency Preparedness, a federal government office created to protect the public from acts of bioterrorism and other health emergencies.

Speaker Barney Burroughs, Building Wellness Consultancy Inc., Alpharetta, Ga., agreed.

"Filtration and air cleaning can be a silver bullet to improve the environmental protection in your facility if you understand the realities of your building, if you understand the applicable filtration technologies, and if you appreciate how to gain full value of your filtration upgrades," he said. "Filtration can be the silver bullet to aid in attending your cleanliness and safety goals - whether they are the ultimate and ideal safe haven building or merely incremental protection for improved protection, improved indoor air quality, and good system operating value."

According to ASHRAE, more than 20,000 viewers at approximately 1,000 sites watched the April 14 broadcast, which was hosted by the ASHRAE Presidential Ad Hoc Committee on Homeland Security and funded through a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation in New York.

DVDs of the broadcast are available. The cost of the DVD is $41 ($34 ASHRAE members). To order, contact ASHRAE Customer Service at 800-527-4723 (United States and Canada) or 404-636-8400 (worldwide), or fax 404-321-5478.

More information about ASHRAE's work in homeland security, including free reports, can be found at www.ashrae.org/homelandsecurity.

Publication date: 04/26/2004