Toronto library may launch CO2 lending program in mid-July

Toronto residents may soon be able to rent a carbon dioxide (CO2) monitor from the public library as part of the city’s pandemic response.

In April, the city of Peterborough became the first municipality in North America to facilitate such a program – loaning CO2 monitors to residents for a week at a time so they can determine the quality of the ventilation in the air in their home, office or other indoor facilities. the spaces.

The devices use a “red light system,” officials said at the time. A green light means the air quality in the space is good, yellow means everything is fine, and red means there is little ventilation in the area.

The higher the CO2 levels in space, the more recirculated air an individual will inhale.

“Good ventilation and filtration are important because they help reduce the risk of illness by reducing levels of aerosols containing viruses and bacteria, and other air quality issues, which can make us sick, including including the virus causing COVID-19,” Dr Thomas said. Piggott, Peterborough’s medical officer of health, said in a statement released in April.

Piggott added that it’s relatively easy to reduce CO2 levels if residents test high. Actions such as opening windows, reducing the number of people in a room, and using air filtration devices will all help increase air ventilation. Wearing the mask will also help eliminate potential pollutants in the air.

Around the same time the Peterborough program was launched, some residents contacted the Toronto Public Library to ask if they intended to do something similar. At the time, officials said on social media that they had been contacted by organizations interested in donating CO2 monitors and that updates would be provided at a later date.

Months later, it looks like an official program is underway.

In a tweet posted on July 2, the library said it plans to introduce a CO2 monitoring program in mid-July and that more information is expected “in the coming weeks.”

CTV News Toronto has contacted the library for more details.

CO2 monitors have been widely used throughout the pandemic, but not consistently. In 2021, the Minister of Education of Quebec declared that monitors would be installed in all classrooms.

Yet when an Ontario public health unit attempted to enforce a policy that any classroom with a CO2 reading over 800 parts per million receives an additional HEPA air filter, the medical officer in The province’s chief said experts were ‘not aware at this time of any correlation between CO2 levels and viral transmission.

The use of CO2 monitoring has been widely proven in scientific journals as a tool to measure the risk of COVID-19 infection.

Ryan H. Bowman