How Much Odor Control is Enough?
When you spend millions to control odors at a public utility but still get complaints from the neighbors, then what? Many wastewater treatment plant managers find themselves in this situation. Plant upgrades often contain 10% or more budgeted for odor controls, but sometimes the odor problems still persist. So how much can you do for your neighbors? And how do you defend yourself when you suspect that incoming odor complaints might be the fault of a competing business?
One municipality, when faced with this problem, turned to real-time odor monitoring with OdoWatch before they invested more. At this plant, a neighbor continued calling to say that his outdoor business was being harmed by odors coming from the plant. While the plant wants to be a good neighbor, they don't want to devote money to the problem when they aren't 100% certain it will be solved.
They positioned OdoWatch eNoses near the two processes they think might be contributing to off-site odors at their neighbor's business. Over time, they have been able to see how the weather has interacted with emissions to cause odors that impact the neighborhood.
In just a few months, they got some surprises. Odor plumes leaving the plant did not behave as they expected. The summer temperatures actually brought more dispersion to the odors when they thought off-site odors would be more frequent. And autumn's cooler weather kept some of the odors closer to the ground. They were also able to collect data by odor concentration - how many times did odors of various concentrations reach our neighbor? And for how long did each episode last? Using this data, they will be build a case to fund more odor controls, which will be targeted right where they are needed. For more details and to see the whole article, please click here: