The COVID-19 pandemic has renewed interest in the importance of indoor air quality for health. The spread of respiratory aerosols is the primary mechanism for COVID-19 transmission, making it crucial to understand the role of effective ventilation in managing the risk of disease transmission. The concentration of exhaled carbon dioxide (CO2) in indoor spaces can be used as a proxy measure of ventilation efficiency. Poor indoor air quality has been associated with a range of acute and chronic health problems, including respiratory issues, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. Poor air quality may also impair cognitive performance and productivity. Social and economic inequalities exacerbate the impact of indoor air quality issues, making it crucial to address these problems in an equitable manner. Public libraries have been identified as an effective intermediary for providing education and free air quality monitoring technology to communities, with the ultimate goal of promoting awareness and increasing access to tools to promote accountability for maintaining high indoor air quality standards. The primary objectives of this initiative are to: 1) develop a citizen science toolkit for assessing indoor air quality in public spaces and deploy the toolkit to public libraries in Arizona; and 2) to conduct a program evaluation to determine whether this kit can be effectively deployed through public libraries to promote citizen science efforts and engage community members in promoting healthier indoor air quality, identify areas where improvements can be made, and prepare the program to be scaled to a larger audience.
- Evaluation of a Novel Citizen Scientist Library Loan Program: A Community-Based Indoor Air Quality Initiative