By Jeff Eriks and Jesse Levin

December 1, 2017


How do you manage facility odors?

The idea of “Not In My Back Yard” is real and is becoming more prevalent. Odor is one of the main issues that comes up every time a waste disposal facility builds or expands. While every resident produces waste daily, none of them want to live near or see the facility where it ends up. Nearby residents, do not want waste facilities near their home or business for many reasons, but odor tends to be the primary reason.

Odors can come from Landfills, Transfer Stations, Recycling Facilities, and other sites. However, it is possible to design a new or existing facility’s renovation to help owners manage waste, prevent odors and work to help them eliminate odor going forward.


The key to odor reduction is prevention. Every day, transfer stations and recycling facilities accept hundreds of thousands, if not millions of tons of waste. The facility is limited to the material it receives based on its permit. So while odor may be a non-issue at many facilities, it is at a few. In most cases, Recycling Facilities and MRFs accept clean, dry waste, so there are few odor issues. Dirty MRFs and Transfer Stations allow all types of materials due to the permits from various environmental agencies throughout the U.S.

Working with owners in designing a facility, a couple of the initial questions to get asked include:

  1. What type of material they can accept?
  2. How will the material enter and leave the facility?

The goal is to remove the waste as quickly as possible. Facilities must be designed for waste to be stored in an orderly way. That order allows for the stored material to get efficiently removed from the floor, into tractor-trailers, and onto its next destination. Emptying the tipping floor every day is one way to reduce odors from a waste disposal facility.

Read the full article on Waste Advantage Magazine