The Journal of the American Medical Association reports that, "Pollution is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality, and was associated with an estimated 9 million premature deaths globally in 2015 or 16% of all deaths." Just last year, despite the decrease in pollution due to the lockdowns, it is estimated that about 160,000 people died prematurely as a result of air pollution in big cities alone.
That is an absolutely staggering statistic. What's ironic is that the same study also states that the health care industry is a major contributor to the pollution that indirectly kills so many. While it is impossible for any one person or any one facility to reverse much of the damage, it is up to each of us to do what we can to minimize the harm we do to our local communities.
One way pollution can be minimized is by making the transition from total exhaust fume hoods to ductless hoods wherever possible. This will reduce your facility's impact on the environment in a number of ways, while being cost effective and often even more convenient for your particular applications.
Total exhaust hoods are meant to keep operators safe, but don't take the environment into account at all. They simply remove harmful and potentially toxic fumes and vapors and release them into the environment. While the fumes dissipate and become less hazardous to humans as they do, if we continue to release these vapors into the atmosphere, they can accumulate and result in damage to local flora and fauna, which will in turn impact the humans who depend on these natural resources.
By implementing a ductless system, this possibility is avoided altogether. AirClean Systems' ductless hoods employ gas phase bonded carbon filtration. These carbon filters provide users with a high capacity for most chemical compounds, ensuring the air that is released is absolutely safe and contaminant-free. There are even multi-layered options for compounds that are more difficult to adsorb, like hydrogen sulfide, chlorine, formaldehyde, and others. The filtered air is so safe that it is released right back into the room.
This brings us to another way that ductless hoods help to care for our environment: they result in a lower carbon footprint. The University of Berkeley released a study stating, "We estimate the annual operating cost of U.S. fume hoods at approximately $4.2 billion, with a corresponding peak electrical demand of 5,100 megawatts." The vast majority of that energy comes from fossil fuels which release carbon into the atmosphere and can create other forms of pollution.
As traditional total exhaust hoods must constantly release air into the environment, they are practically throwing money to the wind. The air they are exhausting has been heated or cooled by the building's air conditioners, requiring the air conditioners to constantly work to keep the temperature in your building comfortable. This not only increases the amount of energy used by your facility, but it also puts unnecessary strain on your air conditioning units, leading to more maintenance and shorter lifespans.
Ductless hoods filter and recirculate air, ensuring lower energy costs and a lighter workload for air conditioning units. This, in turn, brings down the size of your facility's carbon footprint and leads to a cleaner environment for all. Not only are you being a better steward of the environment, you're saving money while doing it.
Another element to take into consideration is portability. Total exhaust hoods are, of course, completely stationary. A total exhaust hood is a permit fixture to any room or building in which it is installed. They cannot be moved from one room or department to another, so different departments may each need to install their own exhaust hoods. This compounds the issues we've already reviewed, making for even worse environmental outcomes.
Ductless hoods, however, are portable and can be easily moved from one room to another. Thus, depending on your applications, the same hood could be used by multiple departments. This would significantly cut costs and lead to better energy use at your facility.
Taking care of the environment is the responsibility of every person. Every bit you can do makes a difference to your local community and, by extension, to the rest of the globe. Call one of our inside sales specialists to see if making the switch to a ductless enclosure is right for your applications.