Aalborg Forsyning experienced some difficulties with their indoor environment, so it was important to find out if there was an actual problem and where it originated from

Employees were experiencing some difficulties with their indoor environment at Aalborg Forsyning, a utility company. Issues like headaches and respiratory tract irritation, including dry throats, were reported in the company’s logging system.

The problem had numerous possible sources, such as an outdated ventilation system, which made managing the temperature and humidity problematic. Additionally, the coal storage for the Nordjylland Power Station, which Aalborg Forsyning operates, is located nearby.

“If the wind blows hard enough from a certain direction, coal dust gets blown into the building, producing a strong smell,” explained Michael Sandager, an environmental representative at Aalborg Forsyning. That meant that it was important to find out where the indoor climate problems were coming from.

Investigating the indoor climate and working environment

“I contacted three different providers to solve this issue. After speaking with Arne Oxbøl, I had no doubt that FORCE Technology had the skills needed to investigate our working environment,” he said.

“Marcus Levin handled the job very professionally. Your company came with all the right measurement equipment, and the report I received afterwards was very easy to read. We were able to clearly see where the problems with our indoor climate were. The objective documentation and data raised the level of the discussion to the point that it was no longer just based on feelings,” Sandager continued.

“We’ve also had an active coal filter installed in our ventilation system for extra protection against the coal fumes, and we’re working to increase awareness of coal handling procedures at our storage facility.

We also found out that the coal dust content in the air is within limits under normal conditions. We haven’t ruled out the possibility of the coal causing irritation on some days, since the wind never blew in the ‘wrong’ direction and speed during the measurement period.

“The measurements also showed that the ventilation system needs to be completely replaced, since several areas had temperatures that were too high and ambient humidity levels that were too low.

We plan to have the system replaced during building renovations that will be starting later in the year. We expect to have a second set of measurements taken next year, after the renovations have concluded, to verify that the indoor climate has improved,” he concluded.

Measurements of the workplace environment was among others made in offices at Aalborg Forsyning