From a report by the CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission)
Biological Pollutants in Your Home
Most information about sources and health effects of biological pollutants is based on studies of large office buildings and two surveys of homes in northern U.S. and Canada. These surveys show that 30% to 50% of all structures have damp conditions which may encourage the growth and buildup of biological pollutants. This percentage is likely to be higher in warm, moist climates.
From a 1994 report on PROPOSED rules by OSHA (standards addressing indoor air quality in indoor work environments). On December 17, 2011, OSHA withdrew this proposal.
Based on the information submitted to the docket, OSHA assumed that 30 percent of the buildings have indoor air quality problems.
Based on OSHA's percentage of problem buildings (30 percent), OSHA assumed that 30 percent of employees working indoors are exposed to poor indoor air quality. Therefore, the number of employees potentially affected is 21 million.
From a 2007 joint study conducted by the EPA and Berkeley National Laboratory
Berkeley Lab, EPA Studies Confirm Large Public Health and Economic Impact of Dampness and Mold
“Building dampness and mold raised the risk of a variety of respiratory and asthma-related health outcomes by 30 to 50 percent.”
“Of the 21.8 million people reported to have asthma in the U.S., approximately 4.6 million cases are estimated to be attributable to dampness and mold exposure in the home.”
“The national annual cost of asthma that is attributable to dampness and mold exposure in the home is $3.5 billion.”
From a 1999 study by the Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic Study Implicates Fungus as Cause of Chronis Sinusitis
“An estimated 37 million people in the United States suffer from chronic sinusitis, an inflammation of the membranes of the nose and sinus cavity.”
“Mayo Clinic researchers say they have found the cause of most chronic sinus infections -- an immune system response to fungus. They say this discovery opens the door to the first effective treatment for this problem, the most common chronic disease in the United States.”
From a 2007 study conducted in Finland
Finnish Study Links Child Asthma with Structural Dampness in Buildings
“At least one in ten, and possibly as many as one in five, cases of asthma among children are linked with water damage in the building.”
“It has been estimated that between 84 to 95 per cent of fungus spores and 27 to 46 per cent of fragments can end up in the lungs, and it is believed that the fragments can get into the lower respiratory tracts of small children more easily than that of others.”
From a January 27, 2010 article posted on Wire Service Canada
B.C. Company Fights Back Against Sick Building Syndrome
"In a survey of 100 U.S. office buildings, 23 percent of office workers experienced frequent symptoms of Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) such as respiratory ailments, allergies and asthma. The impact has been usually hidden in sick days, lower productivity and medical cost, but the economic impact is enormous, with an estimated decrease in productivity around 2 percent nationwide, resulting in an annual cost to the United States of approximately $60 billion."
"William Fisk from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California established a baseline for quantifying benefits from improved IAQ and demonstrated the economic impacts of increased productivity. Findings are showing that improvement in IAQ can: Reduce SBS symptoms by 20 to 50 percent, with estimated savings of $10 to $100 billion; Reduce asthma by 8 to 25 percent, with estimated savings of $1 to $4 billion; Reduce other respiratory illnesses by 23 to 76 percent, with estimated savings of $6 to $14 billion; Improve office worker productivity by 0.5 to 5 percent, with estimated savings of $20 to $200 billion."
From a May 2011 study by Leonardo Trasande of the Mount Sinai School of Medicine and Yinghua Liu of National Children’s Study New York-Northern New Jersey Center
Environmental Illness in Children Costs $76.6 Billion Annually
Trasande and Liu focused on the cost of lead poisoning, childhood cancer and chronic conditions, including asthma, intellectual disability, autism and attention deficit disorders — conditions that are linked to environmental toxins and pollutants in the air, food, water, and soil, as well as in homes and neighborhoods. “Left unchecked, these preventable environmental factors will continue to harm the health of our children and push up health care costs,” Trasande said. “By updating environmental regulations and laws aimed at protecting the public’s health, we can reduce the toll taken by such factors on children’s health and the economy.”
From a November 2012 alert from NIOSH (National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health)
Preventing Occupational Respiratory Disease from Exposures Caused by Dampness in Office Buildings, Schools, and Other Nonindustrial Buildings
"NIOSH has estimated that 29% to 33% of new-onset adult asthma is attributable to work-related exposures and 23% of existing adult asthma is exacerbated by work. If occupants develop asthma or asthma exacerbation while working in damp buildings, medical treatment may not be effective if the occupant continues to be exposed. An occupant in damp buildings with allergic asthma may experience symptoms after exposure to very low levels of a sensitizing agent that may still be present after remediation; in such cases, an occupant may require relocation to another area."