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Best in Class Technologies for Ontario’s Safe Return to School

Featuring Thomas Cole Inc. CEO Tim Cresswell, hosted and produced by Liz Beatty

Thomas Cole Inc. CEO Tim Cresswell

Thomas Cole Inc. CEO Tim Cresswell represents leading air purification technologies in Ontario, Canada; solutions that fight Covid-19 and reduce carbon footprints. He’s back with us to talk about Premier Ford’s Safe Return to School plan. Tim talks about the key elements of an effective safe return to school strategy: increased airflow, and active air purification. Listen in…

Liz:  I’m Liz Beatty, This is the new healthy building podcast.  We dig for stories about people & technology transforming communities and saving the planet one building at a time.  Thomas Cole President Tim Cresswell represents leading air purification technologies in Ontario — solutions that fight COVID and reduce carbon footprints.  He’s back with me today.  Tim, what do you make of Premier Ford’s Safe Return to School plan.

Tim:  The approach is good and I support any effort to give parents, staff, and students peace of mind about safety in the new school year.  Over the past year building, owners have been installing Merv 13 filters for better air filtration and installing HEPA filters for additional air filtration.  It’s a good start but not the total fix to satisfy the problem. Now we need real proven solutions to deliver on these goals.

Liz: So  let’s drill down on some of these key elements of an effective safe return to school strategy:

Tim:  It’s all about increased airflow, and a secondary layer of safety, active air purification.  That’s what will make indoor learning the safest possible. And that’s why at TCI, we chose to work with NERVA, They’re an engineering and science-driven company that took months of due diligence to identify, test, and quantify the results of the best solutions on the market.

Liz:  I understand Nerva reviewed hundreds of possible solutions, from Hepa filters to UV Light.  What came out on top?

Tim:  Here’s the first of that two-layered solution, tackling ventilation. Nerva Duct Sealing technology emerged as best in class, hands down.  It’s been proven over two decades across the US. And in the past year, TCI and Nerva have brought this technology to 250 schools in Ontario.

Liz:  So what are some of those quantifiable results?

Tim:  They’re unmatched in the industry. We have over 20 school projects completed, with 200 more on the ramp, we’re averaging 35% more air volume. Our first project was Paris Central  School, part of the Grand Erie School Board, end result 71% more air volume. I was talking recently to Josh Lewis,  Engineering Manager at Nerva Energy Group. He spent decades testing clean air technologies.  Here’s what he said about Duct Seal’s measurable real-world performance:

Josh:  The results are phenomenal.  The average airflow has increased from 20% in newer builds to triple-digit improvements in older under-serviced schools. We’re averaging 35% increases in ventilation across all applications — AND — no mechanical improvements required and no downtime during the installation process. That means cost-effective and non-disruptive.  It’s a game-changer for facility managers searching for ventilation improvements.”

Liz:  Wow. Impressive.  Now you mentioned another layer of technology for the ideal solution for schools.

Tim:  Ya, there’s a second key technology in the TCI/Nerva tool kit that can give parents, teachers, staff and students added peace of mind about safety.   The technology is called REME LED, but again, I think Josh describes it best:

Josh:  Make no mistake, there’s a new, fast-growing pandemic market for Air Purification solutions, full of misinformation and outlandish, unproven product claims.  That’s why we reviewed and tested hundreds of systems before choosing Duct Seal and add well, our second layer of safety, REME LED.  And here’s why we also chose REME LED:

Our research showed we needed ability to treat airborne droplets or contaminated surfaces proactively, not just relying on a passive filter or UV light. We eventually chose and endorsed REME LED technology in March of 2020 based on the manufacturers’ global presence and extensive lab testing. Nine months later Lloyd’s of London went on the record saying they chose the same technology for their billion-dollar portfolio. Having a company of that size and stature agree with your assessment is really rewarding and shows we did our homework properly. This technology is in a league of its own when it comes to performance and efficacy. ”

Liz:  So Tim,  Nerva/TCI are now servicing 9 school districts in Ontario, 22 million square feet of educational space across Ontario with one or both of these technologies. What’s ahead?  What’s the big picture goal?

Tim:  As energy experts, we want schools to make fully informed decisions, clear of misinformation, with options offering proven quantifiable results.  And solutions that keep their long-term goals in mind too.  So technology that fights COVID, but, like Duct Seal, can also reduce utility cost.  Even schools that have adequate ventilation can use Duct Seal to reduce runtime on their systems, reaping major energy savings. The average payback is only 3-6 years, depending on the type of building.  Our job now is to get the word out there about these technologies — especially if we are to reduce our carbon by 45% by 2030.

Liz:  Important stuff. We’ll be talking more about TCI climate change initiatives in upcoming episodes.  For now, Where can listeners learn more about Ontario’s Safe Back to school Strategy and these best-in-class technologies?

Tim: Contact myself or Marie Cresswell 9056371204 or visit

Liz:  Thanks Tim

Tim:  My pleasure Liz

Liz:  I’m Liz Beatty, This has been the New Healthy Building Podcast.  Thanks for listening.

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Host & Executive Producer

Liz Beatty is an award-winning feature writer, broadcaster and podcaster. She’s won the 2020 Gold Lowell Thomas Award for Radio Broadcasting from the Society of American Travel Writers. And North Americana took both 2020 Gold and Silver Lowell Thomas Awards for Best Podcast.

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