REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0137.v1
Subject: Engineering, Civil Engineering Keywords: Odour Legislation; Air Quality; Air Pollution; Odor; Smell; Odour Units; Dispersion Modelling; Agriculture; Environmental Regulations; Policy
Online: 7 December 2020 (10:58:20 CET)
When it comes to air pollution complaints, odours are often the most significant contributor. Sources of odour emissions range from natural to anthropogenic. Mitigation of odour can be challenging, multifaceted, site-specific, and is often confounded by its complexity—defined by existing (or non-existing) environmental laws, public ordinances, and socio-economic considerations. The objective of this paper is to review and summarize odour legislation in selected European countries (France, Germany, Austria, Hungary, United Kingdom, Spain, The Netherlands, Italy, Belgium), North America (USA and Canada), South America (Chile and Colombia), as well as Oceania (Australia and New Zealand) and Asia (Japan, China). Many countries have incorporated odour controls into their legislation. However, odour-related assessment criteria tend to be highly variable between countries, individual states, provinces and even counties and towns. Legislation ranges from (1) no specific mention in environmental legislation that regulates pollutants which are known to have an odour impact to (2) extensive details about odour source testing, odour dispersion modeling, ambient odour monitoring, (3) setback distances, (4) process operations, and (5) odour control technologies and procedures. Agricultural operations are one specific source of odour emissions in rural and suburban areas and a model example of such complexities. Management of agricultural odour emissions is important because of the dense consolidation of animal feeding operations and the advance of housing development into rural areas. Overall, there is a need for continued survey, review, development, and adjustment of odour legislation that considers sustainable development, environmental stewardship, and socio-economic realities, all of which are amenable to a just, site-specific, and sector-specific application.