By Alexander Landa
According to an article by the Journal of Human Rights and the Environment, it turns out that there's a solid connection between human rights and the built environment. Essentially, humans should be guaranteed at least a bare minimum of living in a quality environment; there's a case to be said that there would be legal ramifications should a person not be surrounded by buildings that meet certain health requirements.
This dilemma is emerging, though. These provisions are historically meant to say that a human should be safe in the natural environment, not the built environment. The USGBC and other organizations are working to amend this to include indoor requirements as well.
A major claim by the article is that humans have the rights to the environment, health, housing, water, and sanitation, and that this is all affected by the indoor environmental quality (IEQ) as well as the outdoors, natural environment.
There's a bright side, at least! The report also details that green buildings are combating this, as these designs are meant to address and fix many IEQ issues, considering anything from indoor air quality to lighting and acoustics. This means that LEED buildings are essentially built and designed with IEQ in mind.
Information was taken from Josh Gellers, PhD at GBIG/Journal of Human Rights and the Environment.