Incoming President Joe Biden is set to radically overhaul the US Government's attitude towards the environment. Chief among his proposed goals is a return to the Paris Agreement, which the US controversially quit as of November 2020. Signatories of the agreement are required to adopt a framework that regularly reports on emissions, submit nationally determined contribution plans (NDCs) limiting emissions, and outline implementation efforts, with the goal of keeping global temperature increase below 2C.
Ventilation has been shown to be a key weapon in the fight against COVID-19, so now is the time for H&S consultants, FMs and building owners to work together to prepare buildings for people returning to work full time. Sara MacLean from MacLean Communications explains.
Protection Beyond Compliance
Holistic EHS Management
The HSE Executive recently published guidelines on how COVID-19 incidents should be reported. RIDDOR reportable incidents include:
‘An unintended incident at work has led to someone’s possible or actual exposure to Coronavirus. This must be reported as a dangerous occurrence.
A worker has been diagnosed as having COVID 19 and there is reasonable evidence that it was caused by exposure at work. This must be reported as a case of disease.
A worker dies as a result of occupational exposure to Coronavirus.’
One of the most significant health & safety events of the last decade was the introduction of new sentencing guidelines by the HSE in February 2016. Between 2018 and 2019, 36 separate cases received fines of £500,000 or more, with the single largest fine totalling a staggering £3 million. In 2015 – the last full year without these new guidelines – the total monetary value of fines levied was relatively small, with only 5 cases at or above £500,000. Medium sized businesses, with a turnover between £10 - £50m, found themselves increasingly at risk from crippling fines. So how can these businesses protect their workforce?