Codes + Standards, Light + Health

Lighting Changes In The Fitwel Healthy Building Standard v3

On June 4, 2024, Fitwel, a leading global healthy building certification, released Version 3 (“v3”) of its standard. This update strives to incorporate the latest public health research to optimize real estate assets for health and quality of life, future-proof them for climate adaptation, and maximize real estate value.

Overall, the Fitwel standard is guided by seven health impact categories:

  • Impacts Surrounding Community Health
  • Reduces Morbidity and Absenteeism
  • Supports Social Equity for Vulnerable Populations
  • Instills Feelings of Well-Being
  • Enhances Access to Healthy Foods
  • Promotes Occupant Safety

The new v3 Fitwel standard has the following changes related to lighting in the Commercial Interior Space Scorecard (single tenant):

Outdoor Lighting – Now includes contents from former strategy “Safe Entry and Exit Lighting.” Removed NA pathway and added building entrances as a required area of illumination. Added requirement that lighting must be pedestrian scaled and minimize glare.

Natural Daylight – Added additional pathways using simulations and window VLT levels.

Light Pollution Mitigation – Limiting glare and light trespass from artificial light at
night by implementing interventions such as light shields and automated timers helps preserve biodiversity and regulate circadian rhythm of those in the surrounding area, contributing to improved sleep quality, a strengthened immune system, lower stress levels, and decreased risk of cancers.

Optimal Lighting – A layered, flexible, and low-flicker artificial lighting setup that can adjust to individual occupant needs and day-to- day weather conditions reduces the risk of developing eye strain and migraines, and helps regulate circadian rhythm, which has strong positive effects on mood, sleep, and the immune system.

More information on Fitwel and the Fitwel Standard v3 are available here.

Image: Fitwel.org

 

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David Shiller
David Shiller is the Publisher of LightNOW, and President of Lighting Solution Development, a North American consulting firm providing business development services to advanced lighting manufacturers. The ALA awarded David the Pillar of the Industry Award. David has co-chaired ALA’s Engineering Committee since 2010. David established MaxLite’s OEM component sales into a multi-million dollar division. He invented GU24 lamps while leading ENERGY STAR lighting programs for the US EPA. David has been published in leading lighting publications, including LD+A, enLIGHTenment Magazine, LEDs Magazine, and more.

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