Environmental odours, or odour pollution are unpleasant smells emitted from various sources, such as industries, waste treatment facilities, or agricultural activities. Controlling these odours is important to prevent air pollution, maintain public health, improve quality of life, and minimise negative impacts on ecosystems and communities.

Substances that cause odour pollution can harm the health of humans as well as animals. Therefore, environmental odours should maintain a certain level so that it can not harm the health or quality of life.

Contributors to Odour Pollution

Waste Management Plants

Waste Management Plants are the major contributors to odour pollution. Landfill and waste treatment facilities release volatile compounds e.g., aromatics, organic and inorganic sulphide compounds, as well as nitrogen and halogenated compounds. Sewage treatment plants generate odours from wastewater treatment processes. Composting sites produce odours during the decomposition of organic waste.

Livestock Farming

Livestock farms produce odours due to manure management and animal waste. The most important source of atmospheric ammonia is produced by livestock farming (Source: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0013935121014225).

Airborne Pollutants

Vehicle exhaust emissions contribute to air pollution, including odorous gases. Heavy traffic areas and congested roads can result in localised odour issues. Large amounts of airborne pollutants are also generated from landfill sites and sewage drains.

Industrial Processes

Manufacturing plants and factories release odorous substances during production. Chemical and petrochemical industries emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can cause strong odours.

For example, food processing facilities and breweries generate odours from fermentation and processing activities.


Vehicle exhaust emissions contribute to air pollution, including odorous gases. Heavy traffic areas and congested roads can result in localised odour issues.

Chemical Spills and Accidents: Industrial accidents or chemical spills can release toxic and malodorous substances into the environment.

Industries or processes and the odor-producing substances related to them

Production of semi-conductors, pharmaceuticals, textiles (e.g., fabric, printing, dyes), paper, rubber, fertilizer


Food processing plants, livestock feeding facilities, paper mills, and landfills

Hydrogen sulfide

Wood treatment facilities

Pentachlorophenol and creosote, hydrogen sulfide, sulfur oxides

Petroleum refineries

Hydrogen sulfide, sulfur oxides, benzene, toluene, xylene

Coal-fired power plants, vehicle exhaust

Formaldehyde, sulfur dioxide

Image: Major Odour Pollution and Associated Resources (Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry)

Impact of Odour Pollution

Impact on Humans

1. Health of Human

Respiratory Issues: Strong odours can irritate the respiratory system, causing coughing, wheezing, and difficulty breathing.

Headaches and Nausea: Unpleasant odours can trigger headaches and feelings of nausea in individuals.

Allergies and Sensitivities: Certain odours can trigger allergic reactions or sensitivities in susceptible individuals.

Stress and Anxiety: Foul or noxious odours can contribute to feelings of stress and anxiety.

Cognitive Performance: Strong odours can impair concentration, attention, and cognitive function.

 2. Quality of Life

Discomfort and Dissatisfaction: Persistent odours can lead to discomfort, reduced quality of life, and decreased satisfaction with the environment.

Sleep Disturbances: Offensive odours can disrupt sleep patterns, leading to poor sleep quality and daytime fatigue.

Impact on Machines

Machinery Performance: Environmental odours can interfere with the accuracy and reliability of sensors and detectors, leading to erroneous readings or malfunctions.

Corrosion and Damage: Certain odours, particularly those containing corrosive chemicals, can accelerate the degradation of machine components and shorten the lifespan of machines due to accelerated wear and tear.

Environmental odours can have adverse effects on both humans and machines. Thus it is crucial to mitigate the odours for creating healthier and more productive environments for both humans and machines.

Bry-Air Solution to Transform Environments with Odor Control for a Pleasant Experience

Bry-Air Odour Control unit provides a fresh, clean and odour-free environment for human beings. Regular air purifiers can trap common contaminants like dust, pollen and other particulate pollutants. However, the Bry-Air Odour Control Unit not only removes particulate pollutants but also effectively and efficiently scrubs gaseous pollutants which cause odour and indoor air quality problems.

It is successfully eliminating odorous gases from animal research labs, mortuaries, sewage pumping stations and other places having a foul smell due to gases released by chemicals used in various processes.

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