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Odour, dust and steam nuisance

Odour is airborne smell that is produced by many substances and is detected by our sensory perception. Odours can be carried long distances in the air and thus have the ability to affect a large number of people. The degree to which people are affected by offensive odour will however depend on the sensitivity of their sense of smell and their tolerance of the odour in question.

The council can take action under Section 80 of The Environmental Protection Act 1990 in cases where a statutory nuisance is found to exist. Examples of the types of problems we may be able to deal with include:

  • fumes from boilers, etc.
  • dust from loading operations or commercial activities
  • smoke from bonfires or chimneys
  • accumulations of waste (e.g. dog faeces, food items, etc.)
  • odour arising from the manner in which animals are kept
  • filthy premises
  • dust from construction sites
  • odour from industrial, trade or business premises (including agricultural activities)

We will not normally deal with everyday issues arising from ordinary activities such as cooking odours from domestic sources or transient issues such as dust from a farmer combining a field of wheat. There are also occasions when nothing further can be done and you should be aware that if you live close to sewage works, farmland on which slurry is spread, a refuse tip or certain other activities you may be affected by these activities from time to time. In these circumstances all we can do is to require that the operator do what is reasonable to minimise those impacts.

For general information and advice on statutory nuisance please visit our statutory nuisance homepage. The page provides background information on what the requirements are for something to be a statutory nuisance, information on how we investigate and what information and commitment we would require from our complainants.