Healthy homes: ‘The biggest health and business opportunity of a lifetime’

(EurActiv, 14 Oct 2019) Indoor environment quality and healthy homes play an ever more substantial role in human well-being, according to new research unveiled at a high-level event last week (10 October).

Last Thursday, Danish firm Velux released the fifth edition of its ‘Healthy Homes Barometer’, an in-depth look at the state of housing and other buildings, plus the effect they have on human health.

Statistics show that Europeans spend on average 90% of their lives indoors, be it at home or work, which has prompted the company to invest resources in finding out how that affects our health.

The previous edition of the barometer concluded that one in six Europeans report living in an unhealthy home and, for the first time, the research delved into the state of the continent’s workplaces.

Damp, inadequate lighting and poor insulation all pose a risk of health complaints like asthma, pneumonia and poor sleep cycle, which the report said has a knock-on effect on productivity at work.

2019’s barometer focused on how those factors impact on children specifically. In a set of startling results, the report concluded that one in three European children live in what can be described as an unhealthy home.

The barometer drew on EU datasets provided by SILC and Eurostat and assessed living conditions based on four primary indicators: dampness, darkness, cold and excess noise.

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EurActiv, 14 Oct 2019: Healthy homes: ‘The biggest health and business opportunity of a lifetime’