Carbon Dioxide (CO2)

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that is a product of completed carbon combustion and is the by-product of biological respiration. The OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) for CO2 is 5,000 parts per million (ppm) as an 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA).

CO2 increases in buildings with higher occupant densities, and is diluted and removed from buildings based on outdoor air ventilation rates. High building CO2 levels may indicate a problem with overcrowding or inadequate outdoor air ventilation rates.

Exposure to high levels of CO2 can increase the amount of this gas in the blood, leading to a condition called hypercapnia or hypercarbia (abnormally elevated CO2 levels in the blood). As the severity of hypercapnia increases, more symptoms, ranging from headache to unconsciousness appear, and it can also lead to death.

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