Odors: The Other Effluent

by Richard J. Pope, Associate; Malcolm Pirnie, Inc., White Plains, NY,
Jeffery M. Lauria, (M.ASCE), Vice President; Malcolm Pirnie Inc., White Plains, NY,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1989, Vol. 59, Issue 8, Pg. 42-44

Document Type: Feature article


Neighbors object to unpleasant odors emitted at wastewater treatment plants, and dealing with such odors requires tact as well as technology. The operators and engineers must listen to complaints, then develop both immediate and long range odor control measures. Operator training is important, as is regular citizen involvement throughout the entire process. An effective program balances the technology, standby systems, attentive maintenance processes and a serious commitment to odor monitoring. Systems available include chemical addition, wet chemical scrubbing, carbon adsorption, combustion, impregnated pellets, biological processes, tall stack dispersion, and masking agents. Containing the processes under buildings, lids or domes is also effective if measures are taken to prevent corrosion and promote worker safety.

Subject Headings: Biological processes | Odors | Effluents | Wastewater treatment plants | Chemical processes | Occupational safety | Training | Maintenance and operation

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