Reducing Occupant Exposure to EMFs in Residential Construction Part 2: Avoiding AC & Magnetic Fields

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    This is part 2 of the course series- “Reducing Occupant Exposure to EMFs in Residential Construction.” First to be discussed is AC magnetic fields. This is the type of EMF you think of when you hear the words, “electromagnetic field”. It has four common sources: separation of conductors carrying current loads, such as overhead power lines; unbalanced electric loads on adjacent hot and neutral conductors; current on grounding paths, including metal water pipes and TV cable sheathing; and point sources, such as transformers and motors. Yet, magnetic fields are only one component of a duality of fields present wherever electricity exists, the other being electric fields. Electric fields is discussed in a separate course. AC magnetic fields are known to cause a host of illnesses and the safe exposure guidelines for long term exposure vary widely from country to country. The building biology profession, by which all of the panelists are certified, is the most active proponent of knowledge in North America on identifying, mitigating and avoiding all types of EMFs. The panelists and their colleagues throughout the world work with clients who are sensitive to these fields, as well as those clients who want to promote a healthier living and work environment. You will learn the four sources of AC magnetic fields and an introduction on how to identify and mitigate each one of them (when possible). These sources of magnetic field exposure are found in a large percentage of homes and commercial buildings. Wiring errors, for instance, are violations of the NEC and yet they go undetected by electrical contractors and code inspectors alike. Indoor sources of magnetic fields are avoidable if you know how to follow the proper procedures.

    Course icon- instructor   Instructor: Spark Burmaster, moderated by GreenHome Institute

    The presenter is Spark Burmaster, EE, BBEC (Building Biology Environmental Consultant), and EMRS (Electromagnetic Radiation Specialist). Spark is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Electrical Engineering program and he resides in Chaseburg, Wisconsin, near La Cross. Spark has developed course materials for the beginning and advanced EMF seminars taught by the Institute of Building Biology and Ecology (IBE). He works with EMF-sensitive clients throughout the country tracing and repairing sources of EMFs in their homes, offices and farms. Spark had his beginnings in EMF mitigation as a consultant for Organic Valley, developing protocols to mitigate stray voltage on dairy farms. He installed Aermotor Water Pumping Windmills throughout the upper Midwest. Spark is also a founder of the Midwest Renewable Energy Fair and presents an ElectroMagnetic Exposure Workshop for them annually. His website is

    ceu-icon   CEUs: 1 credit hour

    GBCI AIA(HSW) NARI Green CGP Certified GreenHome Professional (CGHP) AIBD State contractor or designer license may apply.

    Course icon- you'll learn   You’ll learn:

    • How to design the right placement of electrical components to create a safer home
    • How to avoid common wiring mistakes and the magnetic fields they create to provide a healthier living and work environment for your customers
    • How to provide plumbing and TV cable connections without magnetic fields, thereby improving the welfare of occupants in homes you wire
    • How to measure AC magnetic fields at the beginning and end of your projects to ensure that you have met your objectives to provide a low-EMF living and work environment for your customers

    Course icon- resources   Resources included:

    • Handout

    Course icon- time   Time: 60 min.

    Course icon- quiz included   Quiz included

    Course icon- Translation   Language: English

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