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The RESET Sustainability Standard: Transforming Indoor Environments

In an era marked by a heightened awareness of the importance of indoor air quality and occupant health, the RESET standard has emerged as an innovative and novel approach to ensuring healthy indoor environments.

In an era marked by a heightened awareness of the importance of indoor air quality and occupant health, the RESET standard has emerged as an innovative and novel approach to ensuring healthy indoor environments. RESET, which stands for "Regenerative Ecological Social & Economic Targets," is a globally recognised standard that focuses on the real-time monitoring and optimisation of indoor air quality (IAQ) in buildings. We’ve laid out the basics of the RESET standard, its origins, key principles, and the transformative impact it is having on indoor environments worldwide.

The Origins of RESET

RESET was created by the team over at GIGA in 2013 as a way to address the effects that poor outdoor and indoor air quality was having on people’s health and wellbeing. Realising the critical role that IAQ plays in the health and well-being of building occupants, the RESET standard was created to provide a transparent and actionable framework for monitoring and improving IAQ while promoting sustainability and wellness in buildings.

Key Principles of RESET

Real-time Monitoring – One of the most important features of RESET is its focus on the real-time monitoring of indoor air quality parameters. This includes particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), carbon dioxide (CO2), temperature, and humidity. This continuous monitoring allows for immediate feedback and data-driven decision-making improving the indoor air quality in a far more immediate way than more traditional approaches.

Performance Targets - RESET has used it’s own data as well as industry research to establish clear performance targets for IAQ parameters. This ensures they are continuously aligned with international health and sustainability standards. These targets provide a benchmark for healthy indoor environments and encourage ongoing improvement over stagnating ‘set targets’.

Data Transparency - Transparency is a fundamental principle of RESET. Building owners and occupants all have access to the real-time IAQ data that is being gathered. This enables them to make informed(and collaborative) decisions and verify the performance of their building's systems.

Actionable Insights – RESET goes significantly beyond simple data collection. Utilising this data,RESET-certified buildings can provide actionable insights and recommendationsfor improving IAQ on a day-to-day basis. Building operators can use thisinformation to adjust ventilation and filtration systems in response tochanging conditions and occupants can adjust behaviours that might be reducingtheir own air quality. 

Certification Levels - RESET offers different certification levels, including Core, Core & Shell, and Commercial Interiors. Each level corresponds to specific IAQ performance criteria, providing flexibility for different building types and uses as not all standards are relevant for all spaces.

The Impact of RESET

RESET can have a profound impact on the the indoor environments where people live and work.

  1. Health and Well-being: By prioritising IAQ, RESET-certified buildings provide occupants with healthier indoor environments, reducing the risk of respiratory issues, allergies, and other health conditions associated with poor air quality.
  2. Energy Efficiency: RESET promotes a more energy-efficient use of HVAC systems by optimising ventilation rates based on actual IAQ conditions. Buildings are optimised around occupants instead of the other way around. This not only improves indoor air quality but also reduces energy consumption and operating costs.
  3. Tenant Attraction and Retention: Commercial and residential properties that achieve RESET certification gain a competitive edge in attracting and retaining tenants who prioritise health and sustainability.
  4. Data-Driven Decision-Making: The real-time data provided by RESET empowers building operators and facility managers to make better decisions about IAQ improvements, maintenance, and system upgrades.
  5. Global Recognition: RESET has gained recognition and adoption worldwide, with projects in Asia, Europe, North America, and beyond. Its principles have been incorporated into green building certification systems and recognised by leading sustainability organisations.

Challenges and Future Prospects

RESET faces some challenges, including the initial cost of implementing monitoring systems and the need for ongoing maintenance and calibration. However, as technology advances and the demand for healthier indoor environments continues to grow, these challenges are being addressed. There are also other building standards to consider such as BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method), LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), WELL and AirScore. We here at NCG can help you to figure out which standard is right for you.

Final thoughts

RESET redefines the way we approach indoor air quality and occupant health in buildings. Its emphasis on real-time monitoring, transparency, and actionable insights has transformed indoor environments into spaces that prioritise well-being and sustainability. As RESET continues to gain recognition and adoption globally, it is poised to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of indoor environments, ensuring that they remain healthy, sustainable, and conducive to the well-being of all occupants.

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