On October 26, 2018, the Chilean House of Representatives approved a legislative proposal for including odours as a contaminating agent within the environmental framework law. The proposal was presented by half a dozen legislators in 2015. Passing the proposal on modification of an environmental bill to expressly treat odour as a pollutant is the first action at the House of Representatives after 3 years of debate. Chile

Chile has a large record of persistent odour contamination, caused by sanitary landfills, wastewater treatment plants, fish processing factory and, in particular, the pork industry concentrated mainly in the Metropolitan, O’Higgins and Valparaíso regions, with an equivalent to 79% of the swine population of Chile (Source). In 2016, 15% of all complaints received by the Environmental Authority in Chile were related to odours.

While the progress is widely appreciated and the government has commented that it’s already working on a standard for smells as well as an update on the odour strategy of the previous government, the work needs to be accelerated to tackle the issue of odour pollution and its impact on local communities.  ‘With no urgency set by the executive, things will go on a very slow track‘, adds Gerhard Schleenstein, D-NOSES local representative and senior odour consultant at Ecotec Ingeniería.

Read more about the proposal here (in Spanish).