This site deals only with the corporate corruption of science, and makes no inference about the motives or activities of individuals involved.
There are many reasons why individuals become embroiled in corporate corruption activities - from political zealotry to over-enthusiastic activism; from gullibility to greed.
Please read the OVERVIEW carefully, and make up your own mind.
Healthy Buildings International
(Before December 1989 HBI was known as ACVA Atlantic/Pacific)
— The top tobacco-friendly 'ventilation' company in the world. It was funded by the tobacco industry to perform tests on indoor air in buildings in such a way as to demonstrate that second-hand smoke was not a significant problem. — A air-quality monitoring and analysing company run by Gray Robertson, which worked secretly for the tobacco industry to insure that the standards of environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) measured in office blocks, aircraft and public spaces was recorded at a very low level.
Two employees of the company later blew the whistle on HBI activities, but by this time it had global influence and was widely recognised as the leader in the field of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) testing.
HBI wasn't the only indoor-air testing (aka 'ventilation') company to sell its soul to the tobacco industry, but it was the first, largest, and most influential in diverting public attention away from smoke to other pollutants.
See these documents also:
• ACVA 1981—1986
• ACVA (1987 — 1989)
See also theUS government/Jeff Seckler vs HBI 'False Claims Act' complaint.
Part 3 of 3 ACVA Atlantic (which already had a Pacific subsidiary in Australia) was renamed Healthy Buildings International (HBI) in December 1988 — but the name was not widely used until January 1989.
|ACVA/HBI key staff at various times|
Also see the testimony of Reginald Simmons who turned whistleblower with Jeff Seckler.
- Gray Robertson and Anne Robertson (wife),
- Joe Robertson (brother — ran Australia/Asia),
- Peter Binnie (original partner),
- Simon Turner (silent partner and son of AD Clive Turner of BAT),
- Richard Silberman,
- Jeffrey Seckler, [later whistleblower]
- Mike Price,
- Reginald Simmons, [later whistleblower]
- Gregory Wulchin,
- Nicole Miles,
- Brenda Groves, [bookkeeper]
- Susan Voccio
- Dee Huss
- David Handley [MD of UK company based in Berkshire]
- Carl-Gustaf Petterssen was never an employee of HBI, but through Nisses he owned the rights to the name in the UK.
Healthy Buildings International was an office, home, factory and public-space air-quality measurement company which sold-out its standards and ethics to the tobacco industry.
It accepted secret subsidies and secret commissions, and made measurements of major government and public buildings around the world which manipuated (underrated) the contribution of tobacco smoke to poor indoor air quality — inevitably finding that second-hand smoke was only a minor component.
|J Seckler (Whistleblower)|
The company was owned and run by (John) Gray Robertson and Peter Binnie who started in the ventilation business as two ex-employees of a British air-filter manufacturing company. They moved to America and started their own business, acting as agents for their ex-employer's line of replacement filters and inspection ports, and initially concentrated just on engineering-installation.
Air conditioning was much more common in the USA than in the UK, and when they realised the potential of falsifying air-testing in association with the tobacco industry, they set up shop as an air-quality testing organisation.
By this synergistic relationship between the ventillation company and the tobacco industry they both prospered. HBI and some other later competitors in the ventillation industry had their services promoted by the Tobacco Institute (via PR companies and labor unions) in exchange for their support in discounting smoke as a pollution problem. HBI and its corrupt competitors never found evidence of high-levels of second-hand smoke in problem buildings — and they were to make this fact known through the press and broadcast media — and through articles, inquiries, and at scientific conferences.
In some deal, apparently made in the UK, the two original principals of HBI (then called ACVA) bought in a silent third partner, Simon Turner, the son of ADC "Clive" Turner, a top public relations executive with British-American Tobacco (BAT) in London. Clive Turner was the UK industry's general trouble-shooter who also worked as head organizer for the UK's Tobacco Advisory Council (TAC) and later as the head of the Asian Tobacco Council in Hong Kong — and he actively promoted (with not much success) the use of HBI by the British tobacco industry.
They had more success in Scandinavian countries, where they joined forces with Nisses a "healthy building" development company, and in the Mediterranean through HIROSS which manufactured air conditioning equipment. These companies all joined together into what could be characterised as a coalition, but which was more in the way of a global conspiracy.
In return for this coordinated deception of the press, public and politicians, ACVA/HBI received generous financial support from the tobacco industry in the USA and elsewhere, and the company's principals were actively promoted around the world as the experts on indoor air-quality measurement, by public relations companies funded by tobacco.
One of HBI's more successful ploys was to boost the claimed dangers of the (largely-fictitious) "Sick Building Syndrome" (SBS) or "Tight Building Syndrome" (TBS) which the tobacco industry quickly appreciated, offered them an alternative explanation to second-hand-smoke-induced health and workplace well-being problems.
|J Seckler (Whistleblower)|
Quick summaryRobertson and Binnie's early company had two divisions known as ACVA Atlantic and ACVA Pacific (run by Gray Robertson's brother Joe.) Then, in 1988 Gray Robertson and ACVA became involved in a major architectural/building seminar [ Healthy Buildings '88] which was run in Sweden in cooperation with the World Health Organisation (WHO).
This international conference also had the backing of a large real-estate development company, Nisses, which specialised in establishing and renting healthy workplace environments. Behind the scenes Nisses was associated closely with the Swedish Tobacco Company,
Nisses had an agency agreement with air-conditioning giant HIROSS of Italy which, at this time, became part of the Atlas Air Conditioning group (the largest air-conditioning manufacturers in the world). Nisses also became a licensee of ACVA, which allowed it to operate a subsidiary as an indoor air-quality testing company, and they began to work with ACVA Atlantic, producing joint reports — all tilted in the tobacco industry's favour.
The tobacco industry's global public relations company, Burson-Marsteller, also got into the act, promoting Healthy Buildings '88, ACVA, Nisses, HIROSS, and Indoor Air International — a fake scientific organisation set up in Switzerland by Philip Morris consultants working through it's fake consulting group, ARIA in London.
Not long after the 1988 conference, Nisses was fragmented and sold, and Nisses' CEO, Carl-Gustav Petersson , moved to the UK to run companies called "Healthy Buildings Ltd." and "REDAB". He was developing a couple of major building projects at Millbank (London) which Gray Robertson helped him to promote as 'healthy'.
In October 1989 Petersson appears to have sold the Healthy Buildings" name to Gray Robertson, and the name ACVA Atlantic was dropped and replaced by Health Buildings International (HBI) right across the now-global organisation.
[ Note: The name may have changed earlier in the USA than in the UK apparently because of some contract dealings with another operator.]
This new HBI company, with the same old staff and agreements with the US Tobacco Institute, then expanded its global operations, adding a number of subsidiaries. HBI Australia, managed by Gray's brother, Joe Robertson, operated in the Australia, New Zealand, Asia, and the Pacific regions. HBI also struck up alliances with similar operations in other countries — such as Howard D Goodfellow's Goodfellow Consultants in Canada.
The HBI magazine Philip Morris also funded HBI in the USA to produce a bi-monthly HBI Magazine advising building owners on Indoor Air Quality (IAQ). It had many editions and was published in eight different languages.
This expensive, glossy-but-free magazine was posted around the world to building and office managers, and it ran stories which were written to support the propaganda needs of the tobacco industry. Philip Morris had a small team of writers/editors who generated and edited material for this magazine, and they lavished millions of dollars on its publication and circulation.
HBI Seminars The company also ran its own HBI seminars and supplied support services for other seminars and conferences run by the tobacco industry. In return for their participation, HBI's key staff members were promoted by the tobacco industry's paid lobbyists and PR companies as "the world experts on indoor air quality problems" — and before long, the media began to accept this as fact.
The HBI lobbyists also featured at many dozens of Federal and State inquiries into passive smoking and its health consequences; they were also made available for appearences at local ordinance hearings; and they became the 'authorities' used by press and TV journalists whenever questions of indoor air pollution arose. Gray Roberston, in particular, was feted by architects and airconditioning engineers; and listened to by academics and researchers at legitimate air-quality seminars — yet the tobacco industry secretly agreed that his scientific knowledge was dodgy.
Robertson, Binnie, and HBI staffers were the key office holders and supporters in a number of fake tobacco-funded ventillation organisations, such as the Business Council on Indoor Air (BCIA) and the Total Indoor Environment Quality (TIEQ) coalition of the National Environmental Development Association. Both of these pseudo-organisations were set up and operated secretly by the tobacco industry.
This was one of the most successful scams in American corporate history.HBI and the other corrupt ventillation companies were making a fortune until the dam broke and whistleblowers began to reveal the close association HBI had with the American tobacco companies and the US Tobacco Institute.
Whistleblowers The Whistleblowers
HBI suffered a major set-back when one of its key American operators, Jeff Seckler, decided to set up on his own, and compete with HBI for the tobacco industry's subsidised business. A bitter turf-war broke out when Robertson persuaded the Tobacco Institute to deny Seckler the special deals that he had managed to develop. Seckler reacted by threatening HBI with limiting competition, and the case ended up in the courts. Seckler was charged with what amounted to extortion.
Seckler and a partner (who had also come from HBI) then defended themselves by giving evidence which exposed how HBI's association with the tobacco industry worked, and how the air-quality measurements were altered by Gray Robertson and Peter Binnie to suit the requirements of the company's paymasters.
In 1994 this long and bitter battle resulted eventually in Seckler giving evidence to Henry Waxman's House committee on Health & Environment. (Sep 30 1984) A naval expert, [ Alfred Lowrey] in indoor air (a problem on ships) was brought in to examine some documents and confirmed the claims of the whistleblowers.
The Waxman's Subcommittee report (Dec 10 1994) says:
HBI's activities are the focus of this report . The two central issues that are discussed in this report are:
- Whether HBI used improper and fraudulent soientitic practices in conducting research for the tobacco industry that exonerated ETS as a cause of significant
indoor air pollution. Evidence obtained by the Subcommittee suggests that HBI may have
- Altered and fabricated measurements of environmental tobacco smoke
- Systematically under-reported room size, producing false smoker densities
- Reported implausibly low particulate levels in rooms with active smoking and
- Misclassified rooms with active smoking as nonsmoking rooms.
- Whether in testifying for the tobacco industry in opposition to restrictions on ETS, HBI misled federal, state, and local governmental bodies about the results of its research.
The FBI and Department of Justice briefly showed some interest in the evidence, but nothing was done. Then in 1996 Robertson tried to squash Seckler's attempts at extortion and the fight ended up in the courts, where Seckler and a couple of HBI's ex-staffers exposed HBI's manipulation of the air-testing data.
HBI was particularly active in the tobacco-promoted scare-campaign about Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) which was crafted to point the finger of blame for bad office air at chemicals in photocopy machines, synthetic floor-coverings, and poorly-maintained air-conditioning systems (rather than tobacco smoke). The Sick Building line played on the real (but remote) threat of Legionellia by suggesting that all of the respiratory-inflamation and acute-bacterial disease problems were part of the same pattern — and implying that they resulted from neglect of air-conditioning maintenance. This was complete rubbish, but it played well in Peoria.
And since such scare campaigns promoted work for air-conditioning manufacturers and enriched air-conditioning engineers, Sick Building Syndrome was further promoted outside the industry by a whole raft of air-testing companies, and by their association, ASHRAE (the association of air-conditioning engineers).
Where are they now The company still works around the world although one doubts that its connections to industries are now so obvious.
The Initials HBI sometimes refer to Hazelton BioTechnologies Inc.
Also, don't confuse Healthy Buildings International with Healthy Buildings Ltd. which was a business-name registered by real-estate developer C-G Pettersson (the ex-MD of Nisses in Sweden) who appears to have sold the rights to the name to Gray Robertson in October 1989.
- If a research department is dealing with HBI, then it is probably Hazeltons.
- If it is from Corporate Affairs, The Tobacco Institute, etc. it is almost certainly dealing Healthy Buildings International.
Some key documents
1990 /E: Fleishman Hillard has presented the Tobacco Institute with a "Regional Promotional Plan for HBI/Boston.
Although HBI, and Gray Robertson, already are considered by many to be one of the leading resources for information regarding indoor air quality, HBI's expansion to Boston presents an opportunity to continue positioning HBI, and specifically Jeff Seckler, to New England area reporters as the "resident expert" on indoor air quality, as well as position HBI as a company of dynamic growth in a bourgeoning industry.
Further, it is an opportunity to reinforce HBI's views on indoor air quality to regional media and businesses, including the insurance industry.
One of the best ways to introduce Jeff Seckler and HBI is through various speaking opportunities, preferably before the business community but possibly to academics/scientists. HBI's participation in such events helps to reinforce its credibility and prompt reporters to write stories by giving them an immediate story angle.
1990 April 27: Sharon Boyse, the head of "Issues Management" at British-American Tobacco writes to her boss asking for the authority to mount a seminar on ETS in Singapore.
I have been asked by the Singapore industry to lead the presentations with a discussion of ETS in relation to indoor air quality, and of the claimed effects of ETS on non-smokers. It is proposed that Clive Turner [the father of Simon], head of the Asian Tobacco Council, would follow up with a discussion of how the views of both smokers and non-smokers can be accommodated without resorting to legislation.
The industry is particularly worried that current legislation on smoking in public places may be further extended and that the workplace would be included.
It is also proposed that Gray Robertson, the indoor air quality specialist, will visit Singapore quite independently of any activities undertaken by the tobacco industry, to raise the general issue of indoor air quality in whatever public form is available to him.
The success (or otherwise!) of this approach would form a useful basis for discussion on ETS strategies in other countries during the GM's planning session that we hope to hold in June this year.
1990 /E: Article by Simon Turner on HBI. Another was also in preparation for Perry's Environmental Technology Letters.
"HBI seeks to identify the causes of indoor air quality problems — the "sick building syndrome" — and to recommend remedial steps.
Surprisingly, after a detailed, scientific evaluation of these buildings, we have determined high levels of environmental tobacco smoke to be the immediate cause of indoor air problems in only three percent of the 412 major US buildings investigated by HBI between 1981 and 1989. "
He goes on to quote Kirk (Imperial College) and Sterling of Simon Frazer Uni Vancover, [both worked for the tobacco industry] and attack James Repace at the EPA claiming that.
Unfortunately, much of James Repace's exposure estimations are not based on realistic original data or assumptions.
A prime example of this poorly conceived initial assumption is found on page 85. Repace picks measurements from 42 "smoking" buildings ; a substantial number of which are those bowling alleys, casinos, bars, barbecue restaurants and cocktail lounges referenced to in the previous chapter we reviewed, and compares them with twenty-one non-smoking buildings (such as churches and libraries) and concludes that about 85% of the indoor RSP [Respirable Smoke Particles] is due to ETS.
Reference to [Delbert] Eatough's work [a tobacco industry consultant] where he reviews exposure assessment methods shows he estimates about 50% of indoor RSP due to ETS, The difference is explained because Repace did not compare like buildings with similar activities in each, which generated equivalent amounts of non-ETS derived RSP.
1990 Feb 5: Diana Avedon (Tobacco Institute) reports to Walter Woodstone and mentions the possibility of HBI doing a test in Wake County NC. [This is the first dated mention of the company under its new name of HBI]
She says that she has ...
"talked w/Seckler on outcome in Wake Co ., NC — VERY RECEPTIVE AUDIENCE" [Jeff Seckler worked for HBI at this time]
Her list of future projects leaves no doubt as to the role of HBI in supporting the tobacco industry. The Tobacco Institute's Regional representative, Roger Price in WV [West Virginia] and Ronald Saldana in California, had problems that could benefit from the HBI propaganda. She is sending the Regional organisers the relevant material ...
"Per Morgan request, overnighted info. to R. Price (WV) on HBI — Possible building study to keep legislature from banning smoking in chambers."
"Per request, overnighted info. to Saldana on HBI — possible building test."
1990 Mar: /E Published article by P Sherwood Burge, Occupational Lung Disease Unit, East Birmingham Hospital: " Building Sickness — A Medical Approach to the Causes." concentrates mainly on Sick Building Syndrome.
Burge is occasionally involved with Indoor Air International (IAI) conferences — most likely as a gullible participant. He promotes an exaggerated idea of Sick Building Sydrome saying that it has many possible causes, and accepts the claims made by Simon Turner and Peter WH Binnie. He quotes them from "An indoor air quality survey of twenty six Swiss office buildings" which was published by HBI in Environmental Technology magazine in 1990.
- On January 16 Gray Robertson, of Healthy Buildings International, gave a press conference in Madrid explaining the elements that pollute indoor air. He.
Our next step, in collaboration with the Pan-European Project headed by Helmut Gaisch [PM scientist/lobbyist organizer] is to study air quality in Madrid, Barcelona, Bilbao, Seville, and Valencia, and to give ample coverage to the results of these studies as they become known.
1990 May: Philip Morris Spain Action Plan spells out the work ACVA/HBI is doing for the company internationally:
Lobbying Objectives: To slow down the approval of the Royal Decree banning advertising and, if we succeed, to modify its contents. We have mobilized the press (printed, radio, and private television) to question and attack the proposed advertising ban.
OBJECTIVE To create an awareness in the scientific community, the press, and health officials, that tobacco smoke plays only a marginal role in the contamination of indoor air.
On January 16 Gray Robertson, of Healthy Buildings International, gave a press conference in Madrid explaining the elements that pollute indoor air. He pointed, directly and indirectly, to the marginal role of tobacco smoke as an indoor air pollutant.
This conference was extremely well attended with all the important publications of Spain being represented. Mr. Robertson's press conference was featured by TV Espanola on a special program on (date), and was reported on radio and television, as well as in a long list of publications. (See attachments )
On March 16 Simon Turner, of Healthy Buildings International, and Elia Sterling, of Theodor D. Sterling of Canada, gave a press conference to announce the result of their study of an office building in Madrid. Their press conference, as well as the study, were sponsored by the Madrid Association of Architects . This press conference was aimed primarily at the technical press. There was ample coverage of the event. (See attachments)
As a result of these two events and their very positive reception by the press, Healthy Buildings International has opened an office in Madrid and has become quite active in calling attention to the-IAQ issue.
We have begun to identify doctors and scientists interested on the IAQ issue. Three of them already attended the IAQ meeting last April in Lisbon.
TO BE DONE
We are planning an in-depth mobilization of the scientific community and the press concerning IAQ. Our next step, in collaboration with the Pan-European Project headed by Helmut Gaisch is to study air quality in Madrid, Barcelona, Bilbao, Sevilla, and Valencia, and to give ample coverage to the results of these studies as they become known.
1990 June: to July Brennan Dawson's reported on Simon Turner's activities to the Tobacco Institute's Communications Committee.
- Simon Turner of Healthy Buildings International (EDT) conducted a media tour on indoor air quality in Nashville. Included in his media appearances were three radio and one television interview. A report and clips are enclosed.
- A Fortune magazine article on sick building syndrome includes an interview with Simon Turner. This article (copy enclosed) is the result of a pitch initiated several months ago.
- Over 500 press kits announcing the opening of HBI's Boston office were distributed to all major newspapers, radio stations, television stations, magazines and trade magazines in New England. HBI will seek speaking and briefing opportunities with local Chambers of Commerce and other interested parties in the region.
1990 July 5: Philip Morris International is circulating material for the International Corporate Affairs Communications Programs, which shows that Mary Pottorff [New York Corporate Affairs] was working with ACFF [French Tobacco Institute] and the French Federation of Restaurants on a public-smoking campaign (HBI may have done the air-testing). This involved sending material to 400 Members of Parliament.
Also PM International had a briefing paper on Indoor Air Quality testing in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the European Commission Building in Brussels, Berlymont (which would have been done by HBI), and in producing the Healthy Buidlings magazine in Europe.
1990 Aug 23: Covington & Burling (the tobacco law firm) is billing Philip Morris and the AFCC [French Tobacco Institute] for a half-share each of $34,200 for HBI role in a Harris Research Center Opinion Poll in France. It has been allocated internally in PM to "European Workplace Program"
Since HBI didn't do any polling itself and had no need for public opinion surveys, it is difficult to understand this connection. Harris did many polls for Philip Morris — some of them legitimate inquiries, and others not.
1990 Aug 6: Mary Pottorff [PM Corporate Affairs HQ in NYC] memo to Geoffroy Giscard D'Estaing, nephew of the ex-French President who was working in the PM office in Brussels. [who was, at this time, a Member of the Brussels-based European Parliament].
Philip Morris hired anyone who was able to exert influence in the European Community, and Geoffroy D'Estaing had been hired as the Brussels Issues Manager in the Corporate Affairs office in Brussels. He was put in charge of most of the dirty-tricks operations, and proved very capable.
Here he is organising Gray Robertson and HBI activities in Spain, Italy, Germany, France and Belgium. They are intending to hold seminars in France similar to those Robertson held in Switzerland.
The timing,of the IAQ briefings can be whenever it makes sense. I assume you will want maximum visibility prior to the Parliament vote which I understand is in October.
Sessions based on the actual French building studies likewise can be held whenever you want them. Although the work should be completed by late October, it may be desirable to wait awhile for another media hit.
This memo outlines exactly how much support HBI was provided with by the Philip Morris staff. Pottorff writes:
The HBI magazine is still in development. Attached is a flyer that explains what will be included in each issue. I'd prefer to discuss this by phone.
See separate section on HBI magazine
1990 Oct 30: Philip Morris USA's chief scientific lobbyist, Tom Osdene, kept a diary of his meetings and musings which offers some valuable insights into his morals and actions, when you have enough knowledge to decipher them. See page 16. He is discussing the situation in Singapore at a small meeting with John Rupp (tobacco lawyer for Covington & Burling) and Clive Turner (father of HBI's Simon) who was then the head of the Asian Tobacco Council. Osdene writes these notes in his personal semi-code:
Still talking at Singapore. Clive Turner talked [with] Rupp [about] sponsorship for a couple of small studies by G[ray] Robertson. Will discss tomorrow [with] Don Hoel [tobacco lawyer with Shook Hardy & Bacon]. Only thing left to loose (sic) in Singapore is workplace smoking. — Send in Gray [to] do surveys, etc. Seemed to have little effect.
Gray invited to give small confernce in Singapore [on] workplace testing (industry has nt provided workplaces). Distribution of HBI newsletter in Singpare — OK from Don Harris [PM International Corporate Affairs executive in charge of the magazine]
Presentation by local [???] - Gray's presentation (Lee Quan) [Lee Kuan Yew]. Use Joe (Grey's brother) [Who now ran the Asian & Australiasian operations of HBI]
Who in HK [Hong Kong] should get the magazine? Conferences — Money in xxx's? budget. Francico will run one in Spain. Availability of money. Harris poll in Australia, in 7 cities — followed by briefing sessions. Joe will identify buidlings in the cities. Apply this to Korea - surveys?? Re magagzine, HBI will alternate cover - high rise, old buildings. Will report on Swiss Study.
1991 Jan: Public Smoking report of the Tobacco Institute lists 39 pages of their activities. It includes many major and minor activities to counter the ETS claims, including:
[Also a Budget Note] Professional fees [$209,884] higher than projected because HBI's November and December bills and other consultants' December billings were processed during January 1991.
- We authorized initial development of a conference on science and policy, which would include a session on ETS and the EPA ETS risk assessment, to be sponsored by an independent scientific organization.
- We began working with a potential new member of the scientific witness team and provided ETS review materials to an additional candidate for initial consideration.
- We prepared for the annual scientific witness team ETS update meeting scheduled for February.
- We began working with Healthy Buildings International to obtain detailed data on workplace air contaminants for possible use in providing information to OSHA on workplace air quality.
1991 /E: BAT submission to House of Commons on Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) and ETS
Robertson et al [NOT Gray Robertson] has suggested that cigarette smoke significantly contributes to SBS. However, according to Government reports and private studies in the United States and Canada, ETS was claimed to be a contributory factor to SBS (Sick Building Syndrome) in only 2% to 5% of the buildings investigated.
Rather, the majority of indoor air quality problems were traced to inadequate fresh air and poor air filtration. With this being the case, the visible build-up of ETS in an office building should serve as an indication that all airborne substances are building up and that ventilation should be improved.
A.S. Robertson, P. Sherwood Burge, A. Hedge, S. Wilson and H. Harris, in Indoor and Ambient Air Quality Ed. R. Roger Perry and P.W. Kirk, Selper Press, 320-326, 1988.
1990 Aug 21: Philip Morris's Corporate Affairs, EEC Management Plan has a section on Issues Management Status. They are reviewing the success of some projects in Europe in 1990, and planning for 1991.
disassociate ETS as being the major component in poor IAQ and generate doubt as to the validity of ETS health claims by antis. Corporate Affairs and Issues Managment
See Page 10
1991 Jan 18: The tobacco industry's fake Business Council on Indoor Air (BCIA) is run by Paul Cramer as cover for their favorite ventilation companies. meeting See running BCIA opertions ? [TIDN0022782]
1991 Jan 22: Philip Morris accounts for Healthy Buildings International
A/C number #06061200 Vendor No 113042
Dec 31 1990 Paid via Covington & Burling $ 1,317.16 for 11/09
Dec 31 1990 Paid via Covington & Burling $ 1,317.30 for 11/09
Dec 31 1990 Paid via Covington & Burling $50,000.00 for 11/09
Dec 31 1990 Paid via Covington & Burling $ 3,421.00 for 11/09
Dec 31 1990 Paid via Covington & Burling $40,850.00 for 11/09
[then a list of 23 more payments varying up to 45,000 for France, Germany, Spain, etc. Harris Research Center, + IAQ Magazine fee of $6,520 and $11,709]
Sep 30 1990 C&B $50,000
1991 Feb 19: HBI (Robertson) is billing John Rupp at Covington & Burling six days at $1260 per day = $7,500 + $10,000 airfares and expenses - for a flying tour of Europe. Paris, Milan, Munich, Helsinki, Stockhom, and back to USA.
1991 Mar: TI have taken over the running of the magazine. Helping with distribution mailing lists. [TI14580605/0608]
1991 Mar 14: HBI rep was Richard Silberman
Report on IAQ conference in Washington March 14-15
1991 Apr: / E Tony Andrade, giving evidence at an OSHA IAQ hearing, states that
A private, US-based IAQ monitoring firm [clearly AVCA] conducted 412 building investigations from 1981 through 1988. Ventilation problems were associated with complaints in 62 percent of the buildings investigated; bacterial and fungal contamination was reported in nearly a third of all buildings investigated.
HBI's database of 412 sick-buildings, ETS was reported to be a significant contributor to complaints in only 3 percent of all buildings investigated.
1991 July 9: Kay Packett of the Tobacco Institute writes to Tom Ogburn who handles "Issues Management" telling him that she has a report from the NEMI who have 'sponsored a booth at the exhibit" [Human Resouces Management Exhibit, Cincinnati Ohio].
The TI has an "agreement to pay all consultant invoices directly and seek reimbursement from the sponsoring company. Healthy Buildings International (HBI) have invoiced fo $10,264, [for Jeff Secker and Rich Silberman + expenses] which will be passed on to Reynolds. http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/fbu83b00/pdf
1991 Sept: They are considering whether to continue paying for some research organisations.
Lenges. While I can understand wanting to keep the laboratory (CER1A) involved, I do not think that we should try to make it an IAQ resource. Too long start up with questionable pay off. With HBI activities so successful in Belgium this may be redundant.
1991 Nov 12: Sharon Boyse at BAT to Steve Parrish at PM USA.
The situation that has recently emerged between PM and BAT regarding HBI is, not surprisingly, of considerable concern to us. We understand that you are unwilling to accept local BAT involvement in Phase 2 of the current project in Venezuala.
There had been a minor stuff-up which caused this attempt by Philip Morris to keep HBI under their own control. She then counter-attacks, complaining that Philip Morris had been just as clumsy;
[T]he local PM company in Venezuala recently blew the cover of one of our best consultants in the ETS consultancy programme by inviting him to participate in a Marlboro event (through no fault, I must stress, of Cesar [Rodriguez] and Aurora [Gonzales].[The two Philip Morris Corporate Affairs staffers in New York who looked after the Latin American Region]
Our own company [in Argentina], following initial discussions that we had had on the HBI project, had gone to considerable trouble to slot it into their already-prepared company plan and to put to one side the necessary funds over a two-year period. As you may imagine, they are hardly delighted with the outcome.
Even more importantly, when I contacted Gray Robertson yesterday about the possibility of doing something for BAT in Chile (a market in which PM is not a significant player) and to follow up on discussions we had had some time ago about a project in South Africa (where the industry is under fire and again, PM is not a player), Gray was embarrassed to tell me that he had got the distinct impression from PM that if he did any work for BAT (or any other non-PM company) in the future, then PM would refuse to fund HBI in future.
This is the most appalling situation, and seems to us to have implications, not just for Latin America, but for the whole principle of industry cooperation on ETS issues. To be frank, I fail to see the value of international cooperation on ETS through the IEMC [International ETS Management Committee of INFOTAB] or any other group if the ultimate attitude of any of the companies is to cooperate only when it suits them!
This is particularly unfortunate in the case of HBI, because not only can their work fail to have any commercial significance at all for the company supporting them, but other members of the industry have already been working with Gray and his team for some considerable time. For them to be put in this kind of position surely cannot seem reasonable to you.
We also particularly resent the implication in all of this that PM are the only company that are able to properly manage ETS and IAQ projects. BAT may not have carried out quite so many major programmes as PM but I can assure you that our staff are fully trained in the management of these issues and we are equally capable of grasping the subtleties of management of independent consultants.
I do hope that we can find some way of solving this problem rapidly and would appreciate the opportunity to discuss these issues with you further.
1991 Nov 19: Ted Lattanzio is now Director of Government Affairs for PM USA — this is a new position for him. Walter Woodson of the Tobacco Institute is advising him on the use of expert witnesses.
These people are available to discuss the issue at hearings, in one-on-one situations, in briefings with the media. They can also submit written statements for various audiences. The Institute retains the services of six of these experts, each of whom maintains a private consulting practice.
The Institute retains two firms with an abundance of knowledge on the subject of indoor air quality (IAQ). The firms are Healthy Buildings International and Consolidated Safety Services . Between them, the firms have seven experts who can testify or otherwise address IAQ concerns in the states.
The basic IAQ argument is that.tobacco smoke has been found to be a contributor to IAQ concerns in only two to four percent of all cases, according to private industry and US government studies. While tobacco smoke is generally a symptom, not a cause, of IAQ concerns, ventilation is the culprit in about 50 percent of the cases.
The Institute retains the services of three PhD economists who are willing and able to address questions about the regressive nature of excise taxes [and] a full-time expert who is willing to discuss the industry's youth programs and positions on tobacco advertising and sales practices. The consultant, a former president of the National Association of State Boards of Education, is a respected educator. [ Jolly Ann Davidson]
1992: HBI is an obvious conspirator in a South African tobacco deception. Quote:
I had a call from Gray Robertson today who is concerned about how they are going to acknowledge industry sponsorship of their appearances in South Africa in Johannesburg.
They would like to be able to say, if asked, that they did have some sponsorship from the South African industry, but that the tobacco industry are of course only one of their clients. They have a very impressive slide with a huge range of clients, including government, to back that up. That way, they are not lying or in any way concealing the truth. Please could you confirm to me that this would be acceptable to both UTICO and Rembrandt?
1992: Sharon Boyse writes about HBI's $154k bill for Argentina.
Attached is a final quote from HBI for all three phases of the program ... Please also note, more importantly, that this is an extremely sensitive document! HBI are currently under a considerable amount of investigation in the US about their connections with the industry. All references to companies in the quote has [sic] therefore been removed. Please do not copy or circulate this in any way and please destroy this fax cover sheet after reading! I know this sounds a little like James Bond, but this is an extremely serious issue for HBI. [Emphasis in original.]
Even more importantly, when I contacted Gray Robertson
[of HBI] yesterday about the possibility of doing something for BAT in Chile (a market in which PM is not a significant player) ... Gray was embarrassed to tell me that he had got the distinct impression from PM that if he did any work for BAT (or any other non-PM company) in the future, then PM would refuse to fund HBI in future. This is the most appalling situation, and seems to us to have implications, not just for Latin America, but for the whole principle of industry cooperation on ETS issues. ...
1992 March: Recommended in memo about "How to run media junkets", and who to use as "independent experts" Not now available - decided not to... [304055628/5630]
1992 May: "Environmental Tobacco Smoke, Indoor Air Quality and the need for Adequeate Ventilation: "Only two percent of the buildings inspected by NIOSH (Nat.Institute for Occupational Safety and Health ) in response to occupant complaints about poor Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) proved to involved excessive levels of tobacco smoke" HBI found 3% in buildings with sick-building syndrome
1992 May 12: Sharon Boyse, Issues Manager at British American Tobacco, faxes this document to Aurora Gonzales [who looked after Latin America for Philip Morris] giving her the Gray Robertson quote for a media tour of Argentina and Chile (using Simon Turner). Each of the national BAT and PM subsidiaries is expected to pay its share of the costs.
I have asked [tobacco lawyer] John Rupp to call Pat Davies to brief him about what Dr Alvarez should say if questioned on his industry sponsorship, so that Pat, in turn, can brief Alvarez.
[Davies was the C&B lawyer supporting Latin American activities]
See his note
1992 May 13: HBI is a third-party presenting a message through briefings and publications which is complementary to our position on IAQ (Indoor Air Quality) and thus worthy of our financial support vis-a-vis certain projects. C&B (Covington & Burling law firm) was charged with ensuring that the financial support is utilized in approaptiate ways; monitoring the impact of HIB's activities on issues of interest to us and administering our program of support. 
1992 June 10: Whistleblower Jeff Seckler appears on NBC Nighly News and at a subsquent congressional inquiry, and exposes HBI's "lucrative financial and intimate ideological relationship with the Tobacco Institute that motivated it to falsify data [intended] to lessen the reported impact of ETS in buildings HBI assessed. http://ajph.aphapublications.org/cgi/content/full/95/S1/S16
1992 June: HBI holds public seminar - says Philip Morris just one of 240 clients
Gray Robertson of HBI credits Philip Morris with FACT (Filtered Air Control System) He also notes that HBI and BEST (Willman ) are collaborating
1992 June 2: Richard Silberman, here identified as spokesman for "Health Buildings International" (HBI) On Radio in Cincinnati on Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) 
1992 Jun 10: Transcript: HBI was outed as a tobacco industry front by Jeff Seckler on NBC TV. He tells interviewer Robert Hager that "in ten years of inspecting, Healthy Buildings has never advised a building owner to ban smoking." Roberson is interviewed and denies the links.
Seckler reveals that HBI and Philip Morris had a temporary falling out over an inspection at the Pepsi headquarters in New York
The Pepsi Cola headqusrters in Rye Brook, New York, called Healthy Building in to inspect their building. HBI inspected, and
of course they did not recommend a smoking ban. Pepsi went abead and
instituted a smoking ban in the building anyway. Philip Morris hit the roof.
1992 June 10: NBC Nightly News spotlights the Philip Morris ties to HBI
Robertson admits that tobacco does provided major funding for com saying it "might account" for up to 20% of our consulting fees, and the figure of $500,000 is mentioned, but denies this is the reason his company has never in 10 years recommended smoking problem. Jeff Seckler had just gone public.
Philip Morris's (PM's) neightbor in Ryebrook was Pepisico HQ. They hired HBI to check, and then (despite the report) insituted a smoking ban. Philip Morris "hit the roof" PHILIP MORRIS HISTORY VIA CLIPS [2075275618/5638]
1992: Later story in the LA Times says "HBI's extensive links to the industry were first disclosed by The Times in an article in 1992."
1992 Aug: Article on Occupational Hazards (Page 247) reported as saying:
According to Healthy Buildings technician Michael A. Price, allergenic fungi, dusts, low relative humidity, bacteria, and chemical off-gassing from carpeting and furniture are the most common causes of IAQ problems. The pollutants remain in the air, Price said, due to poor maintenance, inefficient air filtration, poor ventilation in the interest of conserving energy, or changes in the design and use of a building.
1992 Sep 25:: Robertson, Gray bills them $750 per half-day for consulting - 
1992 Sep 2:: Robertson, G in OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) policy discussion - 
1992 Nov 30: Sharon Boyse of BAT is advising UTICO (United Tobacco) in South Africa about HBI and the lobbyist Paul Dietrich. HBI is an obvious a co-conspirator in a South African tobacco deception.
I had a call from Gray Robertson today who is concerned about how they are going to acknowledge industry sponsorship of their appearances in South Africa in Johannesburg.
They would like to be able to say, if asked, that they did have some sponsorship from the South African industry, but that the tobacco industry are of course only one of their clients. They have a very impressive slide with a huge range of clients, including government, to back that up. That way, they are not lying or in any way concealing the truth. Please could you confirm to me that this would be acceptable to both UTICO and Rembrandt?
[Rembrandt is the South African cigarette company which controlled Rothmans International. Philip Morris held a major share in this company. UTICO were United Tobacco, another tobacco company.]
1993: John Rupp at Covington & Burling. Proposal for Regional Recommendation and Funding Requirements.
Recruitment - Japan, Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, indonesia, Hong Kong, Taiwan. — 12 to 14 scientists — $175,000 [29 pages]
• Indonesia: Publication [proceedings] of the IAQ seminar under the banner of the University of Jakarta (and distribute to government departments and media)
Recruitment - 1) scientist with academic position in a prestigious university. 2) occupational hygienist 3) IAQ office study 4) create ASHRAE chapter — $105,000
• Malaysia: Recruitment - A new scientist associated with presigious university.
Dr [Heng Juat] Lim or industry to distribute material.
ASHRAE. Dr Lim to become active if exists, or to consider ways to set up an ASHRAE chapter in Malaysia
HBI studies, and Misc — $185,000
• Taiwan: Recruitment - two scientists
Other... Environmental health priorities report; Indoor air seminar organized by IAI or JIARS ($80,000); HBI study ($60,000); HBI contact with ventilation company ($10,000)
1993: PARG Australasia [Public Affairs Resources Group of BAT] report
More positive has been the reaction within the region to seminars begun on ventilation options for the hospitality industry. These seminars have been introduced into Australia, with an extension of these likely in 1994 to New Zealand. Information kits will be also forwarded to CMC in Fiji.
The US-based group Healthy Buildings International were commissioned to undertake the seminars, with each of Australia's three tobacco manufacturers attending as sponsors for the half-day seminars. All have been well received, and co-incide with plans for a Ventilation Code for hospitality premises to be announced in Australia in March 1994.
1993 Mar 12: ETS Issues for Insurers: a Seminar mounted by Eagle Star Insurance [The insurance company owned by British Tobacco] Speakers were Francis Roe [tobacco consultant], David Handley [MD of HBI in the UK], Andrew Foyle (Lawyer with BAT's main law firm)
The brochure says Handley is the Managing Director of HBI in the UK which ....
is devoted exclusively to the identification and control of internal pollution problems in public and commercial buildings.
Mr Handlev will discuss Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) in the context of the general question of indoor air quality. With specific reference to workinig environments, he will assess whether ETS makes any significant contriburion to such problems as "sick building syndrome" and will consider the key factors for achieving good quality indoor air.
1993 Oct 22: Philip Morris received from RJ Reynolds, the preliminary complaint in the case of (joint action) United States of America & Jeffrey Seckler (Plaintiff/Relator) vs Health Buildings International Inc (Defendant), The inclusion of the US Federal Government was due to the necessity for Seckler of having an injured government entity in order to take action under the fair-trading laws without opening himself to legal counter-attack by the tobacco industry.
[The plaintiff alleged that HBI] obtained contracts with the United States of America ("United States" ) to do inspections of the interiors of federal buildings under fraudulant and false pretences and had a secret contractual relationship with the Tobacco Institute ("TI") and other tobacco interests, including RJ Reynolds and Philip Morris, to provide inspections that would not focus on the harms caused by cigarettes, and to testify against smoking bans in return for which:
- TI (and later RJ Reynolds) paid HBI a fee for each inspection HBI completed;
- TI and other tobacco interests promised to and did provide HBI other fees and subsidies,
- Philip Morris, through TI, paid HBI under the guise of grants, hundreds of thousands of dollars to publish a magazine, Healthy Buildings International Magazine ("HBI Magazine"), which TI and Philip Morris used in the United States and around the world to combat the anti-smoking movement,
- TI secretly subsidized HBI's office in Danvers, Massachusetts and other fixed expensss of HBI, and
- TI, whenever it needed an inspection, would secretly pay for the cost of an HBI inspection.
As a further part of this fraudulent scheme and conspiracy TI inter alia
- paid to have HBI's employees attend media training classes to learn how to speak against smoking bans,
- paid for part of HBI employees' salaries,
- told HBI employees to lie about their motivation for testifying at various hearings
- paid HBI to spy on anti-smoking individuals and groups,
- along with Philip Morris, controlled the content and circulation of HBI Magazine
- secretly reviewed and approved many of HBO's speeches and public rseleases, and
- conspired with RJ Reynolds and Philip Morris to funnel other monies to HBI in return for favorable inspections and testimony.
1994 Apr 7: Donna Staunton at the Tobacco Institute of Australia writes to key corporate executives that the (Australian) National Health & Medical Research Council (NH&MRC) has settled initial disputed proceedings with TIA over a passive smoking report it was intending to issue.
Because of the particular emphasis which will apparently be given to cardiovascular disease by NH&MRC the TIA has requested that Dr Julie Campbell of the University of Queensland independently review the latest paper on this issue by Glantz and Parmley and separately submit a report to NH&MRC setting out her evaluation of the papers cited by those authors. Dr Campbell will submit her report to NH&MRC by 11 April, 1994
The issue of indoor air quality has also been the subject of a separate submission — having been made by Healthy Buildings International in August 1993.
Other submissions that have already been sent to NH&MRC include submissions by:
Philip Witorsch, Maurice E LeVois, W Gary Flamm, Jim J Tozzi, Gio Batta Gori, Healthy Buildings International, Richard Mulcahy, Julian Lee, Richard Tweedie and Kerry Mengerson, and Professor Eccleston.
1993 Jun: Rupp to Malaysian. Re air testing in buildings with Joe Robertson
We will pursue the possibility of having this work funded by the EEC, British Council or other comparative entity.
1993 June 1: Tobacco Institute list of "Witness/Expert Appearances — Scientific/Legal/Spokespersons."
Tom Lauria, Mike Buckley, Simon Turner, Gio Gori, Bill Wordham, Gray Robertson, Peter Binnie (Now HBI) , Larry Holcomb, John Fox, Rich Silverman, Walter Merryman, David Remes, Frank Powell, Melinda Sidak, Rudy Cole, Larry Halfen. Binnie appears to be concentrating on airports (not aircraft)']
Attached 1991 Witness List which includes, Brennan Dawson, Jeff Seckler, Jim Goold, Joe Pedelty, Jolly Ann Davidson, Dick Wagner, Bernadette Davidson, Walt Decker
And 1990 Witness List (page 35) includes Bill Orzechowski, Mike Davis, Morris Coats,
Also document has attached the 1989 witness list with (in addition to above)
Dwight Lee, David Weeks, Alan Kassman, Bob Tollison, Richard Wagner, Jack Peterson, "Bestype Consulting", Dennis Vaughn,
And 1988 List (Most of above) + A Katzenstein, David Brenton (focus on airlines)
1993 Dec: WRA (PM's Worldwide Regulatory Affairs) budget for 1994 has HBI $200,000 for professional services (just one division of Philip Morris only)
Healthy Buildings International: For witness and testimony regarding IAQ (Indoor Air Quality) and Sick Building Syndrome.
1993 Dec 9: Matt Winokur of PMI's Worldwide Regulatory Affairs section includes in his Weekly report: "Reviewed HBI proposal for PM Belgian's restaurant progam"
1994: Seckler begins his whistleblowing.
1994: Submission to NHMRC 
1994 Feb: An article by Robertsonfor the Restaurant industry. It is a rationale for having tobacco companies as clients — while suggesting that the tobacco industry is only one of many industries that they service [in fact it was responsible for 90% of their income]
[W]e have regularly been asked by the Tobacco Industry to provide them with consulting services on issues involving indoor air quality and tobacco smoke. We serve that industry with the same enthusiasm and impartiality that we use in consulting with oil, gas, chemical, electronics, manufacturing and property management companies.
Indeed, because of our experience with tobacco issues, many commercial clients seek our advice on this issue. Frequently, clients ask - "in view of the policy of the EPA and their conclusion with regard to second-hand smoke being a carcinogen, do we have to ban smoking"?
Our answer is no - you have a choice.
However, our advice to all our clients is not to lose sight of the long term objective - a comfortable and productive work-place with reductions in the concentrations of all pollutants, which in some instances include tobacco smoke. Fortunately, smoke, from the perspective of a ventilation engineer, is a relatively easy component of the indoor air to manage.
Microbes, on the other hand, with their incredible capacity to reproduce, coupled to their ability to lie dormant over long periods, are much harder to control. Furthermore, for every building where we have encountered tobacco smoke problems we have experienced tenfold that number of buildings with microbial contamination.
1994 Mar 31: A consulting agreement/expenses claim for David Handley (HBI in the UK) for $11,537 (he gets $1000 to $1,200 per day over the minimum, 
1994 Apr 7: Donna Staunton, the lawyer/director of Tobacco Institute Australia is advising her corporate members that HBI were making a submission to the National Health and Medical Research Committee (NHMRC) The tobacco industry was suing the NH&MRC over its refusal to give equal weight to industry's scientific claims that ETS was safe. The had taken legal action to block it from publishing an adverse finding about the dangers of passive smoking,
Their Revised Strategy is to refer the NH&MRC to scientific papers supporting their claims that ETS is safe. They have commissioned Dr Julie Campbell of the University of Queensland to make a submission on cardiovascular disease, and have already sent to the Committee submissions by:
- Philip Witorsch,
- Maurice E Le Vois,
- W Gary Flamm,
- Jim J Tozzi,
- Gio Batta Gori,
- Healthy Buildings International,
- Richard Mulcahy,
- Julian Lee,
- Richard Tweedie and Kerry Mengerson, and
- Professor Eccleston,
[These are all well-known, well-established scientific lobbyists and consultants for the tobacco industry in the USA and Australia.]
We propose to invite a number of eminently qualified experts to conduct a review of all the "evidence" concerning exposure to ETS and its alleged health effects.
This Independent Working Party will mirror the workings of NH&MRC's Joint Working Party which is charged with reviewing its 1986 Report. The Joint Working Party is due to present its report to NH&MRC in November. We would propose that the Independent Working Party submit its report to both the Joint Working Party and NH&MRC in October [thereby] placing pressure on NH&MRC's Joint Working Party to come up with a "balanced"view.
Glenn Eggleton has approached Dr Julian Lee on an informal basis. Dr Lee has agreed to help set up the Independent Working Party.
1994 Jul 20: Silberam R meeting with Hotel Association Council in New York 20 and 21st July
1994 July 21: Handley, Dave Managing Director for HBO in Europe, based in Berkshire UK 
1994 July 30: Turner, Simon presenting at the NCSC conference New Orleans.
Includes photocopies of receipts 
1994 Aug 23: Henry Waxman has expanded his subcommittee investigation into "secret contractual relationships" between HBI and tobacco industry. Paid in exchange for HBI's "deliberate policy of never linking IAQ problems to second-hand smoke" and testimony "as an independent expert against smoking bans" + falsification of field data + inspection of federal building sunder fraudulent pretenses" (based on allegations by Seckler)
1985 Aug to 1994 Sept Between these two dates HBI employees testified on at least 129 occasions before federal, state, or local government agencies concerning ETS.
HBI standard statement was that, according to their analyses, moderate levels of smoking could be tolerated indoors with adequate ventilation. In at least some cases, they did not acknowledge tobacco industry funding.
Alfred H Lowrey, a research chemist of Naval Research laboratory concluded that "the data is so marred by unsubstantiated data entries, discrepancies, and misclassifications that it raises serious questions of scientific fraud."
[In 1995 July 19 in JAMA's B&W Tobacco Documents (expose)]
[This long JAMA document lists the claims made by the staff of the Congressional Subcommittee on Health and the Environments about "numerous discrepencies" and admissions by HBI staff that "their field notes had routinely been altered".
The Subcommittee report stated that the evidence suggested HBI may have used improper and fraudulent scientific practices.
1994 Aug 23: The House Committee on Health and Environment wrote to Philip Morris USA requiring them to respond to charges about HBI. They specified:
"As you may know, a former employee of Healthy Buildings International, Jeffrey Seckler, has alleged that HBI had secret contractual relationship with the Tobacco Institute and other tobacco interests.
Mr Seckler alleges that the Tobacco Institute and individual tobacco companies provided financial and other assistance to HBI. This assistance included public relations efforts, underwriting an international magazine published by HBI, and subsidizing individual building inspections.
Mr Seckler alleges that in exchange for this assistance, HBI maintained a deliberate policy of never linking indoor air quality problems to secondhand smoke; testified as an 'independent' expert against smoking bans; and falsified field data. Mr Seckler also maintains that HBI inspected Federal buildings under fraudulent pretenses."
|R Simmons (Whistleblower)|
1994 Dec: Reginald Simmons (Whistleblower) gives evidence before the Congressional inquiry. This is his statement, which offers the best description as to how HBI operated
1994 Dec 20: Waxman Subcommittee — this is the Majority Staff report, which accused HBI of systematic fraud. Quotes from reports:
- HBI misled federal, state, and local governmental bodies about the results of its research.
- The Tobacco Institute paid the expenses of a public relations firm, Fleishman Hillard, to arrange media tours for HBI throughout the US.
- The key objective of the HBI concept is to broaden the debate on indoor air quality to deflect the ETS challenge.
- HBI regularly testified for the industry in opposition to federal, state, and local restrictions on smoking. [Waxman Committee Report]
- Potential problems in HBI's scientific research include data alteration and fabrication; systematic misreportinq of room size; implausibly low measurements of particulates in rooms with active smoking; misclassification of rooms with active smoking as nonsmoking rooms; and measurements of ETS under biased conditions.
- HBI testifies that ETS rarely causes indoor air pollution problems. [But] HBI's own data shows the opposite — that smoking frequently causes air pollution problems in buildings.
- HBI's own data show that good ventilation does not necessarily eliminate ETS problems.
1994 Dec 18: HBI Analysis. "Report on Healthy Buildings International Data
To the Subcommittee on Health and the Environment." [18 page detailed report by Alfred H Lowrey of the US Naval Research Laboratories. - Naval expert in ETS]
At the request of the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Health and the Environtnent, I conducted a scientific review [of HBI and CTR evidence to the subcommittee]
My review shows that HBI's conclusions are not supported by its own data. In addition, in my opinion, the data is so marred by unsubstantiated data entries, discrepancies, and misciassifications that it raises serious questions of scientific fraud with resulting implications for worker health.
(1) My analysis of HBI's data shows that it contains many unexplained anomalies, raising serious questions about the integrity of this data. In particular, these anomalies include
(a) reported data for which there were nomeasurements,
(b) discrepancies between numbers on data sheets and the summaries of that data,
(c) misclassification of areas contaminated by ETS as nonsmoking rooms,
(d) large numbers of highly unusual zero readings for particle measurements, and
(e) significant under-reporting of room area in many situations.
(2) In addition, there are serious concerns about HBIs analysis of its own data as reported in its publications and public statements.
(a) HBI asserts that under conditions of moderate smoking and proper ventilation, there are negligible differences in indoor air quality between rooms where there was smoking observed and rooms where smoking was not observed. This is contradicted by HBI's private analysis of its data see.
(b) My analysis of HBL's data for the case of moderate smoking shows that the impact of ETS on indoor air quality is 40-fold greater than HBI asserts publicly.
(3) Other inexplicable findings include the following.
(a) The magnitude of HBI's reported particle measurements appears to be considerably lower than would be predicted on the basis of the reported nicotine measurements.
(b) HBI uses a non-standard piezobalance cleaning method which is different from that provided by the manufacturer, a method which could affect its readings in unpredictable ways.
(c) HBI made a questionable conversion of particle counter readings to mass concentrations.
[Worth reading whole document]
1994 Dec 21: Philip Hilts in NY Times reported on Waxman hearings (at time of Bliley takeover) "Data on Secondhand smoke were faked, Workers say"
"Data cited by the tobacco industry to show that secondhand smoke is not a significant hazard in workplaces were faked, say three workers who helped make the measurements."
The workers statements were cited Tuesday in a report by the staff of Rep. Henry Waxman, chairman of the House health and environment subcommittee. He said the panel's staff had found "significant alterations occurred in over 25 percent" of the measurements of ETS in a survey of 585 buldings by HBI, a private concern in Fairfax County, Va.
Waxman, D-Calif, who will soon lose his position as chairman of the panel when a pro-tobacco Republican, Rep Thomas Bliley of Virginia, becomes head of the panel's parent committee ....
1995: planting information on Mohissi's journal 
1995 Nov 9: Philip Morris was issued with a Disposal Suspension Notice to stop the destruction of documents associated with their HBI scams. It details the main staff members: Gray Robertson, Peter Binnie, Simon Turner, Richard
Silberman, Jeffrey Seckler, Miles Price, Reginald Simmons, Gregory Wulchin, Nicole Miles, Anne Robertson (Gray's wife), Brenda Groves, Susan Voccio and Dee Huss
1996: Study funded by CIAR, published in peer-reviewed journal
Congressional Inquiry susbsequenty revealed that over 25% of the data of this study had been falsified. HBI employees put their devices in corridors and other open areas. (WSJ 15 Feb 1996) Data collection sheets were routinely modified (International Herald Tribute 20 Dec 1994)
1996: Department of Justice and FBI begin inquiries. See testimony of Reginald B (Reg) Simmons (Page 26)
1996 Mar 24: Morton Mintz, Washington Post, Blows HBI out of water. He exposes how HBI operated with the help of the Tobacco Institute and Philip Morris from early 1986:
• Within six years Gray Robertson was one of America's leading spokesment on indoor air quality and tobacco smoke.
• He accepted a monthly retainer from the Tobacco Institute of at least $20,000 (with fees for inspections additional)
• He spread the message that secondhand smoke was a symptom, not a cause of IAQ problems.
• Took $1 million from Philip Morris by way of Covington & Burling to publish the HBI magazine, filled with tobacco-generated material, published in 7 languages
• Received another $8,000 per month to open a second office in Massachusettes.
• Was promoted by PR company Fleishman-Hillyard on tours, and via pamphlets.
1996 Aug 20:: Law suit against Seckler 
1996 Nov 26: Department of Justice to Crowell & Moring (acting for HBI):
"With respect to the above referenced investigation, based on the evidence presently available to us, and the standards of proof applicable in a criminal case, we have closed the file without prosecution."
1997 Feb: Suggests that Joe and Gray are not brothers. That HBI Australia was a BAT (British American Tobacco) subsidiary. This is a Feb March 1997 report [700533546/3547]
1997 Sep 27:: global issues - 
1998 Jul 2: Myron Levin in the LA Times: "Indoor Air Consultant Settles WhistleBlower Suit" The Seckler case had dragged on for 5 years.
A novel whistle-blower suit that accused an indoor-air consulting firm or acting aa a secret front for tobacco companies in their war on smoking bans has been settled out of court for [$100.000] —with the
[Seckler and his lawyer refused to return the journalists calls]
money to be paid by tobacco companies and split between the US government and the former employee who filed the case.
"[a] tobacco industry official, who would not speak for attribution, acknowledged that tobacco companies will fund the settlement and have been paying HBI's legal fees.
And in an unusual clause in the agreement, filed in US District Court in Washington, the former executive, Jeffrey R Seckler, admitted that HBI "to his knowledge" had not defrauded or filed false reports with its federal clients.
The settlement ends another turbulent chapter in the life of HBI, a once tiny consulting firm that tobacco companies rescued from obscurity to use in the global fight against smoking bans.
The suit was filed under the False Claims Act, also known as the whistle-blower statute, which allows employees of private contractors to collect a portion of damages for exposing fraud against the federal government [Some inspections had been of government offices]
Under the settlement $45,825 will be paid to the government, $19,175 to Seckler, and $35,000 to Seckler's attorney"
Note: This bundle of documents also includes the original complaints filed against HBI and the allegations made. http://www.worksafebc.com/regulation_and_policy/pu (etc.)
Article only (Page 9)
1999 Jan 18: China Morning Post story.
Hong Kong's Environmental Protection Department which commissioned the recently released $10 million stuidy is seeking legal advice and conducing checks on the report.
The study had been commissioned in 1995 and 'intended to be the corner stone of future policy and legislation on indoor air"
The Inquiry was ordered after managing director of EHS Consultants, Sarah Liao Sau-tung and Central Policy Unit member John Bacon-Shone were named in Philip Morris cigarette company doucments as having been paid consultants to the industry.
Page 35 http://www.worksafebc.com/regulation_and_policy/pu (etc.)
1999 Sept 18: Engineers Develop System To Assess Anthrax Threats By Rachel Davis
Two NSPE members from South Dakota are helping employers with this dilemma by working with an indoor air quality testing company to develop a threat-analysis system to reduce the impact of biological and chemical attacks.
NSPE member and Professional Engineer George Dunham received a telephone call from Gray Robertson, president of Virginia-based Healthy Buildings International Inc., shortly after the first case of anthrax was reported in Florida on September 18. Robertson wanted Dunham's help in coming up with a process that HBI could use to evaluate the vulnerability of buildings to chemical and biological attacks and propose appropriate solutions.
Dunham and Robertson, who have been friends for 10 years, worked together on significant air quality and ventilation projects for large companies in the past. Dunham, who specializes in HVAC design, founded the 41-year-old consulting engineering company Dunham Associates Inc. with his wife and fellow NSPE member, Professional Engineer Nancy Dunham. Although he retired and sold his interest in the company in 1999, Dunham was willing to take on the threat-analysis project.
"Obviously you can't completely avoid a terrorist attack," says Dunham. "So if it would happen to occur, then you need to have steps in place [to] contain the spread of a contaminant within a building."
2004 Oct 25: The Seckler case was "dismissed with prejudice" when the court was presented with a settlement between the parties in which Jeffrey Seckler, according to Mr. Robertson, "signed a statement that he was lying and knew that he was lying."
The "Motion to Dismiss with Prejudice" was shown to the court, and the settlement conditions read in part,
"Relator expressly acknowledges that to his knowledge HBI did not falsely and fraudulently obtain contracts from the United States and did not falsely and fraudulently perform indoor air quality inspections of United States Government buildings and did not falsely and fraudulently represent to the United States on the indoor air quality inspections it performed on government buildings. Two days later Seckler posted this on the same web site: October 27th, 2007 at 10:01 pm — Jeff Seckler says:
I deeply regret ever signing any agreement with tobacco interests and Healthy Buildings International to settle our lawsuit. My actions were primarily due to my poorly financed (I suspect) lawyer's unwillingness to go to trial. My settlement statement was limited to my personal knowledge of air quality inspections (I was not an inspector) of federal buildings and in no way rescinded any of the other allegations I made about the public relations and other activities of my previous employer (HBI). I would be more than happy to discuss any of this with any interested party.
2005–20: 10 Gray Robertson, Simon Turner and Rich Silberman are still operating HBI, but Gray's daily consulting rate has dropped to $749. https://www.gsaadvantage.gov/ref_text/GS10F0125K/GS10F0125K_online.htm