When most people think of environment management, they think of the world outside of buildings. But facility managers or property engineers might say indoor environmental quality is just as important as protecting the great outdoors. In fact, indoor environmental quality is so important, it accounts for almost 15 percent of the possible points of the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Existing Building certification. Indoor environmental quality can be impacted by a number of factors, including a building’s central air and ventilation system, indoor contaminants such as cleaning chemicals, mold and mildew, and cigarette smoke, and the amount of natural light. Addressing indoor environmental quality might have fewer initial cost savings compared to installing a new energy-saving lighting system, but according to one article, there are many benefits to investing in indoor environmental quality, ranging from improved staff morale and productivity to improved guest satisfaction. For more information on indoor environmental quality, visit the U.S. EPA’s indoor air quality for lodging, or contact Tom Rhodes at the N.C. Division of Environmental Assistance and Outreach. For more information on sustainable tourism, contact Alex Naar at (252)737-1346.