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Environment Protection Authority

Environmental Issues

Air - NSW overview

Assessment and management of odour

Technical Framework - Assessment and Management of Odour from Stationary Sources in NSW

The Technical Framework - Assessment and Management of Odour from Stationary Sources in NSW provides a policy framework for assessing and managing activities that emit odour and offers guidance on dealing with odour issues to industry, consent authorities, planners, environmental regulators and odour specialists. It outlines:

  • the legislation that applies to odour assessment and management in NSW
  • a fair and transparent process for assessing odour impacts from new developments
  • a system to help protect the environment and community from odour impacts while promoting fair and equitable outcomes for odour-emitting activities
  • a technical reference document for proponents/developers, planners and regulators.

The framework promotes ongoing environmental improvement and best management practices to prevent or minimise odour impacts. While recognising the changing needs of industry and society, it also promotes sustainable land use planning and management to avoid odours and associated conflicts.

The Framework is accompanied by the Technical Notes: Assessment and Management of Odour from Stationary Sources in NSW, which provides detailed odour assessment procedures.

The Assessment and Management of Odour from Stationary Sources in NSW:Technical Framework and supporting Technical Notes are available to download in PDF format.

Calculator for meat chicken (broiler) farm developments

The Technical Framework incorporates a 3-tiered assessment hierarchy. The option of using setback distances calculated using the Level 1 assessment method was introduced in 2001 as an alternative to more complex and expensive Level 2 or Level 3 assessment involving odour dispersion modelling.  EPA, in consultation with the Department of Trade and Investment, Regional Infrastructure and Services and the Department of Planning and Infrastructure, have developed a Level 1 odour assessment calculator (in Excel format) to assist poultry growers and their consultants plan for meat chicken (broiler) farm developments, and to inform site purchase decisions.

The calculator uses the formulae defined in section 5 of the Technical Notes to calculate required setback distances for a particular site. If a site cannot accommodate the calculated setback distance, Level 2 or 3 assessment may be required.

The calculator makes it easier for proponents of meat chicken (broiler) farms to use the Level 1 method to assess sites before purchase, rather than attempting to develop farms at sites which are later found to be constrained after the development application process has begun.

Guidance is provided in Section 5 of the Technical notes (20060441notes.pdf, 255 Kb) to help users select the appropriate options in the calculator to ensure the correct setback distance is calculated. Setback distances calculated as a result of incorrect selections may not be approved by the relevant agencies involved in the development approvals process.

Download the odour assessment calculator (PoultryOdourCalcualtor.xls, 38kb). Instructions on how to use the calculator are provided within the Excel file.

Further information on selecting appropriate sites for meat poultry (broiler) farm developments is provided in a Primefact Sheet recently published by the  Department of Trade and Investment, regional Infrastructure and Services. This document is available at:

Page last updated: 18 June 2013