Experts across the world are developing resources for businesses and facilities teams to assist in managing buildings during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are seeing extraordinary support from all areas of the green building community including the sharing of best practices, creation of education content, and new support services.
Constructing buildings during COVID-19 poses additional challenges for the construction industry. Green buildings feature opportunities for creating more equitable, healthier, and supportive environments for construction workers, and in many locations, construction workers are considered essential.
As more information is available on the transmission of the virus, including unknowns around airborne transmission, we expect to expand and refine the resources on this page with the best ways take precautionary measures in managing buildings during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Explore guidance from HVAC organizations or examples of items to consider, but keep in mind buildings vary widely, use engineering best judgement to ensure a recommendation is appropriate for the specific building, location, and season.
- Scientific American Article: How Coronavirus Spreads Through the Air What We know so far.
- American Society of Heating Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE): COVID-19 Preparedness Resources
- Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE): COVID-19 and HVAC systems
- Federation of European Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Associations (REHVA) COVID-19 Guidance
- India Society of Heating Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ISHRAE): HVAC Guidelines During COVID-19
- ASDWA: COVID 19 resources for building water systems
- EPA: Indoor Air and COVID-19 Key References and Publications
- USGBC Pilot Credit Safety First: Building Water System Recommissioning integrates recommendations from industry organizations and experts
- Purdue University resources and guidance for water systems
- ASHRAE Standard 188
- ASHRAE Guideline 12
- USGBC Pilot Credit Safety First: Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Space credit
- View the recording for the July 14, 2020, Ask the Experts: LEED Safety First Pilot Credits: Re-Entering, Cleaning & Disinfecting Buildings session. The session addressed two of the new Safety First Pilot Credits: Re-Entering Your Workspace and Cleaning & Disinfecting Your Space, under LEED v4.1 BD+C, ID+C and O+M.
- Green Seal COVID-19 resources
- Thomas Shortman Training Fund: Cleaning for COVID-19 & other Infectious Diseases
- Building Skills Partnership: Infectious Disease Certification Program
- Building Service Contractors Association International (BSCAI): COVID-19 Disinfection & Safety Course
- 5 Ways to Optimize Buildings for COVID-19 Prevention from the Center for Active Design
- Resources roundup: Indoor environmental quality
- New guides share case studies on collaboration for healthy communities
- First responder buildings become leaders in sustainable design across the United States
- 春季赛决赛Arc for state and local governments: New tools for performance-based green building practice
- Tips and Strategies to Work from Home Successfully
Safely opening up PreK-12 schools will be vital to getting the U.S. economy running at full speed, and federal agencies and NGOs are working on guidance to help school leaders understand how to plan for re-opening school facilities. Each set of guidelines reflects the expertise and perspective of the authoring organization, so below we summarize major elements of those that focus on the intersection of facilities and health.
- CDC Guidance and Tools for Reopening: Foundational guidance for schools and school districts upon which most other guidance is built. The tools include a checklist for school administrators who may be planning for in-person instruction, including how to plan for if someone gets sick or shows symptoms at school. Also consult the guidance on cleaning and disinfecting schools from the EPA and CDC.
- Reopening K-12 Schools During the COVID-19 Pandemicfrom the National Academies of Science: A review of the scientific consensus related to aspects of opening school buildings. A notable resource in the appendix is a summary table of mitigation strategies, their role, and considerations for implementing them.
- Reopening of Schools & Universities from ASHRAE: Series of detailed checklists for school operations staff to use to design and operate HVAC systems to best protect occupant health.
- Schools for Health: Risk Reduction Strategies for Reopening Schools from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health: Comprehensive guidance that covers various considerations for reopening school buildings from an infection control perspective. A notable addition beyond other organizations' guidance is a section on healthy activities, including tips for maintaining recess, enrichment classes, and free time.
- National Action Plan from the Coalition for Healthier Schools: Recommendations for safely operating schools during the pandemic, with an occupational health and safety lens. The guidance includes a sample School Infection Prevention and Control Plan along with green cleaning guidance and other gathered resources.
- Planning for the Next Normal at School playbook: A collection of recommendations, co-authored by Alliance for a Healthier Generation, Action for Healthy Kids, Healthy Schools Campaign, and SHAPE America. Among other considerations, the playbook gives concrete recommendations for addressing mental health and well-being not found in many other planning documents.
- COVID-19 Planning Considerations: Guidance for School Reentry from American Academy of Pediatrics: Focused on childhood health, this guidance pushes for school reopening for the sake of students' overall health and well-being. The document has proven controversial with those who consider the community impacts of COVID-19 to be more of a threat to children's health than the Academy believes them to be.
- Planning Tools for States and Schools from National Council on School Facilities: This resource page includes links to state-by-state guidance, as well as planning documents for school systems to download and use to assess their needs and plan for reopening.