WHAT IS
CO2?

Carbon Dioxide or CO2 is a greenhouse gas that is natural and harmless in small quantities, but as levels rise it can affect productivity and sleep. Most commonly produced indoors by the air we exhale, CO2 levels concentrate indoors with less ventilation.

WHY IS CO2
IMPORTANT?

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Carbon dioxide is a gas consisting of one part carbon and two parts oxygen. It is one of the most important gases on the earth because plants use it to produce carbohydrates in a process called photosynthesis. Since humans and animals depend on plants for food, photosynthesis is necessary for the survival of life on earth.

PHOTOSYNTHESIS

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HOW HAVE I
HEARD OF CO2?

You have probably heard of CO2 emissions in the news regarding global warming. As CO2 builds up in our atmosphere from burning fossil fuels, it has a warming effect that could change the earth’s climate.

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WHERE DOES
CO2
COME FROM?

Indoor carbon dioxide concentrations are driven by a combination of outdoor CO2, indoor breathing and the ventilation rate of the building. As buildings and homes become more energy-efficient and airtight, this means we have less fresh air.

Many of the ventilation systems we use today recycle air to conserve energy, essentially moving the contaminated air around rather than cycling in new air. This results in high CO2 concentrations and poor indoor air quality.

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WHAT ARE
THE EFFECTS
OF CO2

High levels are directly correlated to low productivity and high sick leave making this a crucial concern in offices, schools and home environments.

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Restlessness
Dimmed
Drowsiness
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Increased heart rate and blood pressure
sweating
Sweating
drowsiness
Headache
 
 

AT HOME

Fresh air will help you get a better night’s sleep. Keep your door or window open while you sleep to avoid that “stale” air feeling, which comes from increased levels of CO2.

AT SCHOOL
OR IN THE
OFFICE

Studies show that people have a much harder time learning, performing simple and complex tasks, and making decisions, as CO2 levels rise.

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2,500

vs

1,000

Students in a classroom with CO2 levels of 2500 ppm had much worse test scores than at 1000 ppm.

WHAT ARE SAFE
LEVELS OF CO2?

400ppm

Outdoor fresh air contains about 400 ppm (ppm is parts per million) of CO2.

1000 ppm

CO2 levels indoors is ideal under 1000 ppm.

1500 ppm

Indoor CO2 levels ideally shouldn’t rise above 1500 ppm, take necessary steps to ventilate with fresh air.

2000ppm

Above 2000ppm must be avoided, as more serious symptoms like sweating, increased heart rate and difficulty breathing will occur.

REDUCING
CO2

CO2 levels rise and fall regularly indoors. There are many factors that affect CO2 levels including ventilation, amount of people, and length of time in an enclosed space.

VENTILATION
AND FILTRATION

Regularly replace air filters in indoor fan systems and install a CO2 monitor to remind you when to refresh your home.

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Bamse

PLANTS

In the past, plants have been said to help with CO2 levels at home, however, this has been debunked. Plants reduce CO2 levels on a global scale through photosynthesis, unfortunately, a high quantity would be needed to make any difference to indoor air quality at home. One benefit, however, is that studies have found that being around nature can help reduce stress and induce calm.

WHAT DO MY
CO2 LEVELS MEAN?

250-400ppm

Normal background concentration in outdoor ambient air

400-1,000ppm

Concentrations typical of occupied indoor spaces with good air exchange.

1,000-2,000ppm

Complaints of drowsiness and poor air

2,000-5,000ppm

Headaches, sleepiness and stagnant, stale, stuffy air. Poor concentration, loss of attention, increased heart rate and slight nausea.

>40,000ppm

Exposure may lead to serious oxygen deprivation resulting in permanent brain damage, coma and even death.

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