Livestock facility site check could ID odor problems before you build

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – New and expanding Pennsylvania livestock facilities has increased the potential for agricultural odor-related conflict.
Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences offers free site evaluations to assess odor impacts.
Call before you dig. “Armed with maps, compasses and a working knowledge of odor emission and dispersion, an assessor will visit a proposed site and offer an opinion of the site’s suitability in relation to the potential for odor conflict,” said Bob Mikesell, extension educator in dairy and animal science.
The assessor will evaluate separation distances from neighbors, prevailing wind direction, topography, surrounding vegetation, community sociology, surrounding land-use patterns and manure application areas.
Reports about site strengths and weaknesses and recommendations will be delivered verbally to the producer and reinforced with written correspondence within two weeks of the site visit.
“Often, simply re-locating or re-orienting a proposed facility can dramatically reduce the potential for odor complaints,” Mikesell said.
Since 1999, more than 100 sites have been evaluated in Pennsylvania.

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