Ok folks, let me state what I think is kind of obvious: If you are running an in-person conference/meeting anytime in the future and you want to do it responsibly, you need to: 🧵 1/
- You MUST make masks and rapid tests free and easy to grab. You have to budget for this.
- Consider a vaccination/testing policy.
- Consider the ventilation of the venue. Talk to experts in this if you need to.
- Make as make meals outdoors as possible.
People need to make the shift in their minds that this is no longer about death rates. It's about long covid affecting 15-25% of infected. I just can't believe scientists are willing to risk their greatest asset (their damn brains) so easily.
*Ugh... Typo: make as *many* meals outdoors as possible.
Also consider a full registration refund if folks have to cancel attending because they got COVID. Try to make it easier for folks to bail if they are sick!
Oh, I guess I didn't explicitly state the most obvious, so let me spell it out:
You *must* institute an indoor masking policy, regardless of vaccination/ventilation status.
If you get pushback from the conference center/city/state, you can try to use the language "masking is encouraged/requested/preferred/etc", instead of saying they are "required". Try to keep it friendly, but firm.
Why am I putting so much emphasis on masking? Because I'm am an environmental engineer. I know that the most effective way to control any type of air pollutant is right at the source!
Many folks are contagious before they know that they are sick, so we are better off asking everyone to mask. That is, if you want to avoid having a superspreader conference.
Lots of replies are mentioning hybrid options, which are great and much more inclusive, even outside the context of COVID. What I heard from a couple different societies is that it is *very expensive* to add a virtual option and some societies can't afford to do both.
But obviously we need to do better. I think the contractor companies that run virtual meetings also need to do better, providing a much better service at more affordable cost.
It looks like this thread got way more attention than I expected. Please know that I'm speaking in the context of scientific, society meetings (limited budget). If you're going to a for-profit convention/show/meeting, than by all means they need to do all this and much more.

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More from @marinavance

Jun 6
We have a newly published paper on #IndoorAirQuality and it is #OpenAccess! This was a fun study and here’s a short thread on some of our findings. /1
We put a bunch of low-cost air quality monitors in four homes to measure concentrations of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) during the occupants' everyday lives. Each home deployment was about 10-weeks long.
Not all low-cost monitors behaved the same way. Some were much better than others. But they all performed better during background periods (no indoor sources) compared to when there were indoor PM2.5 sources, such as indoor cooking. 3/
Read 16 tweets
Aug 31, 2021
Our paper on mask filtration is out!
And it's #OpenAccess.
Filtration Performance of Layering Masks and Face Coverings and the Reusability of Cotton Masks after Repeated Washing and Drying.
Two key results from this paper:
1. Doubling up a cloth mask over a surgical mask works better than using just one mask, EXCEPT if the surgical mask has an electrostatic layer.
If you are using an electrostatic mask, there is no point adding a cloth mask over it.
Read 8 tweets
May 28, 2021
The videos and slides from @theNASEM Indoor Exposure to Fine Particulate Matter and Practical Mitigation Approaches workshop have been posted! Links in thread:
Session 1: Sources of Indoor Fine Particulate Matter (April 14 2021)

Videos and PDF Slides:
Session 2: Indoor Exposure to Particulate Matter: Health, Metrics, and Assessment (April 21 2021)

Videos and PDF Slides:
Read 5 tweets
Jun 9, 2020
In the past week, I've spent quite some time talking to friends who insist on saying "I don't see color", or "I don't believe in racism", "I'm not racist because I have black friends", or even "all lives matter". I just couldn't, as hard as I tried, change their minds. [1/8]
It's been exasperating to see that even with all of the written material available, all the data (even some excellent cartoons!), some folks still don't want to admit this. It can be really hard to change one's view point, it seems. [2/8]
But I'm going to go ahead and add one more resource to the pile already available... [3/8]
Read 9 tweets
Mar 11, 2020
I'm summarizing some great resources for #teachers and the public on the #coronavirus via this thread [1/6]:
#onlinelearning #COVID19 #COVID
[2/6] Introductory slide deck from @vfmcneill:
[3/6] More detail on airborne transmission. A thread by @linseymarr:
Read 7 tweets

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