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Being a Good Neighbor With Eco-Friendly Odor Management
August/September 2015 Issue

As a result of urban revitalization projects, as well as suburban sprawl and development, industrial and agricultural operations are now becoming surrounded by new residential and commercial neighbors.

For industrial facilities that call these neighborhoods home, one of the biggest challenges is completely mitigating any odor that may occur. When it comes to fighting odors, being a good neighbor is often an overlooked priority, but is easily managed with today’s most innovative solutions.

The combination of cutting-edge science and equipment helps industrial facilities to implement odor management strategies that are both eco-friendly and highly effective.

The Science Behind Eco-Friendly Odor Management
Today’s eco-friendly industrial odor-control solutions should have very minimal health hazards associated with them – both for the safety of industrial employees and the public.

The most ideal odor management solutions should be non-toxic to both humans and the environment. They should be “readily biodegradable,” at least 60-100 percent in 28 days. Products that meet this standard are much safer for the environment.

Odor management solutions should also contain no harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and be safe for the environment according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidelines. Finally, it is important to search for solutions that use chemicals that are as “green” as possible, which could include using lower concentrations of potentially hazardous chemicals, natural chemicals and food grade chemicals.

Customization of Equipment
Most industrial facilities can now more easily take advantage of customized equipment that effectively and strategically distributes a fine mist or vapor of odor-fighting molecules. These molecules can be broadly dispersed to treat a large surface source of odors or more narrowly injected into a targeted emission process stream such as a stack or exhaust fan vent.

It is also now possible to fight industrial odors based on zones within and around a facility, allowing plant managers to run the odor-fighting equipment depending on the manufacturing schedules and source odor process cycles. Wind speed and direction is another condition parameter that can be used to optimize the odor control system and make it more efficient. To battle wind challenges, many of today’s solutions offer customized controller systems that distribute odor eliminators based on the immediate need in a targeted area.

The equipment can be actuated when the wind conditions would most likely push odor into high-traffic residential and commercial areas. For example, a major brewery uses this type of system, and it allows them to gauge the wind and fight odors based on what Mother Nature dictates.

Today’s solutions also offer cellular- and Internet-based monitoring, which allows for the seamless observation of the operating status of the odor control system.

These kinds of technological advances are being incorporated into all types of odor control solutions including vapor phase, air atomization, high-pressure spray atomization, as well as fan systems.

Being a Good Neighbor
Running a manufacturing facility in high-traffic residential and commercial areas is no small task. Plant managers have to contend with odor complaints, which can often end up in the front page of the newspaper.

By embracing an eco-friendly odor management strategy, these types of public relations issues can be completely mitigated. Foul odors are immediately stopped in their tracks in ways that are safer for the community at large and employees. Being a good neighbor is ideal for everyone.

About the Authors:
Dr. Laura Haupert is the Director of Research and Development for OMI Industries and Ron Mulford is the Equipment Division Manager for OMI Industries. OMI Industries specializes in developing natural solutions for the treatment of industrial odors. The company offers Ecosorb® technology, which eliminates odors without the use of harsh or hazardous chemicals, expensive emission control systems or masking fragrances.