AG5 Odour Impact Assessment Guidance

Odour Impact Assessment Guidance for EPA Licensed Sites (AG5) was updated in February 2019 .


The guidance presented in AG5 is useful for activities which are not licensed by the EPA, particularly nuisance complaints.

AG5 offers a consistent and systematic approach to the assessment of odours on and in the local area of facilities and installations that are licensed by the EPA.  It is intended for use by licensees to assess their state of compliance with odour related licence conditions and to investigate odour complaints received. 

The aim of AG5 is to achieve consistency in the manner in which odour observations are recorded and reported. 

The procedure described in the AG5 guidance document includes:

  • Odour assessment preparation,
  • The assessment of odour through field observations,
  • The recording of findings. 

Odour is the property of a substance that activates the human sense of smell.  The human olfactory system is highly sensitive and as such is capable of detecting extremely low concentrations of a wide range of odorous chemicals. 

Odour sensing olfactory cells are linked to areas of the brain that control emotions and memory processes.  Offensive odours can therefore have impacts on the health and well-being of humans, especially if one is subjected to the odour for extended periods of time.  At sufficiently high concentrations odorous compounds may have a direct effect on human health.  Also, an individual’s health may suffer indirectly due to stress associated with odour impact.  

For assistance with monitoring of odour at your licensed facilities or for the assessment and reporting of nuisance odours please contact us.