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Odour Management Plan

Do you require an Odour Management Plan for your operation? Please contact us for a quotation.

An odour management plan is a supporting document that may be specified as a part of your permit application. The report is typically over 20 pages long (depending on the complexity of your operation), and is intended for use as:

  1. A statement of intent with regards to your intention to mange odour on site. It proves to the Environment agency that you have thought about the implications of what you operations impacts are.

  2. An instruction manual for management and employees. If you receive a complaint in relation to odour, the odour management plan can be consulted and appropriate action taken. It also provide details on the best operating techniques to reduce odour, and methods of record keeping.

Wind Rose - Environmental Permitting Applications

Odour Management Plan Content

A major part of an Odour Management Plan is assessing the receptors in your area, these might include residential properties, schools, hospitals. Effort must then be made to limit exposure of these receptors to odour.

Wind direction and strength (right) is a key part of managing this exposure, a new site might be best situated down wind (prevailing) of receptors, whilst on a pre established site it may be best to only carry out particularly smelly activities when the wind is blowing in a beneficial direction.

Knowing the "chemistry" of your operation is also important, for example when composting materials must be kept aerobic (aerated), to prevent smells. Anaerobic conditions create a "reducing environment" where odours and leachate are more prevalent.

Further Reading on Odour Management


Managing Odour

Preparing an odour management plan will involve looking at the processes on site and try to manage them to minimize odours, try to think of proper fixes rather than "covering up" the smells.

For example leachate lagoons at landfill sites are fairly smelly this is because of the anaerobic condition present in the leachate, you could use a deodorant to fix the smell, but the best option would be to aerate the leachate thus properly removing the odour.

The same goes for composting operations which can also become odourous owing to anaerobic conditions, this can annoy neighbors you then report you to the Environment Agency so it is better to sort out the problem than to let it fester.

Receptors of Odour

odour_managementWhen making an odour management plan have a think about what you are next to, houses, schools etc., who will be effected by the smells from your site?

Include Environmental receptors as well, as impact of any kind on environmental elements such as SSSI or Public Spaces will be frowned upon.odour_key

How to Asses Levels of Odour

The levels of Impact will differ depending on the receptor type, how close it is to your site. A school or residential receptor closly situated would be significantly impacted at relativly low odour levels, whilst a industrial site situated 250 meets away would unlikely to be impacted in all but the most sever circumstances.

To assess odours off site (for example when responding to a compliant) the Environment Agency have an establish "sniff test":

"You may need to carry out an assessment either to work out whether you are complying with your permit, or as a part of an investigation into a complaint. You can use routine assessments to build up a picture of the impact the odour has on the surrounding environment over time. You can develop ‘worst case’ scenarios by doing assessments during adverse weather conditions or during particularly odorous cycles of an operation.  Ideally, you should use the same methodology to follow up complaints."

Effectiveness of Odour Management

If it apparent that resultant odours levels are too high then you may need to check over your operation:

*The degree of residual odour that one would expect from an activity that is using all appropriate measures (BAT) will vary from sector to sector, as it is easier to control odour in some sectors than others. For some activities there should be no odour at all beyond the boundary.