Including an Odor Impact Potential in Life Cycle Assessment of waste treatment plants

E. Cadena, F. Adani, X. Font, A. Artola

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch

11 Citations (Scopus)


© 2017, Islamic Azad University (IAU). Odors occupy a leading position among air quality issues of growing concern. Odors can be emitted from different economic sectors, from industrial to agricultural, including waste treatment activities. Although there are different techniques to determine odor emissions, a standardized indicator has not still been defined to include odor impact into methodological tools such as Life Cycle Assessment. In this sense, some proposals can be found in current literature. Considering these approaches, the present work proposes the Odor Impact Potential, an indicator to be used in Life Cycle Assessment or in waste treatment technologies benchmarking. A simple method is reported to calculate the Odor Impact Potential value from different types of data: chemical analysis of odorants or olfactometric determinations. Data obtained in a previous work for an industrial scale anaerobic digestion plant have been used to present an example of application. Additional Odor Impact Potential calculations from other published data (thermal waste treatment plant and wastewater treatment plant) are also included. The aim of Odor Impact Potential is not to replace parameters such as odor emission rates, odor concentration, or odor emission factors but to use those values to calculate the odor-derived impact in Life Cycle Assessment studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2193-2202
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Science and Technology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018


  • Anaerobic digestion
  • Environmental impact
  • Odor emissions
  • Olfactometry
  • Organic waste
  • Volatile organic compounds


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