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NEPA probes discolouration of Outram River in St Mary

KINGSTON, Jamaica — The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) is currently investigating reports of a 'reddish-pink' discolouration of the Outram River that runs through Port Maria in St Mary.

NEPA said it visited the site along with the St Mary Municipal Corporation and the St Mary Health Department last Thursday July 25. The agency said the team investigated the possible sources of the discolouration and completed 'ground thruthing' activities along the corridors of the river aimed at identifying possible man-made influences on the river. NEPA's Senior Manager in Environmental Management Richard Nelson explained in a release that, “during the investigation it was noted that the mouth of the river was blocked off from the sea and that there was very little flow of water in the upper sections of the river. “A 'reddish-pink discolouration containing suspended matter was observed. This discoloration had a distinct odour of hydrogen sulphide. In addit…
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The Smell Of Money: Absence Of Metallic Chemicals In Odors From People Handling Coins

It's not hard to recall the pungent scent of a handful of pocket change. Similar smells emanate from a sweat-covered dumbbell or the water emerging from an old metal pipe. Yet no one has been able to identify the exact chemical cause of these familiar odors.

Now, researchers supported by a National Science Foundation (NSF) MUSES award and the UFZ Environmental Research Center in Germany have shown that these odor molecules come not from the penny or the pipes, but from metal-free chemicals erupting into the air when organic substances like sweat interact with the metallic objects.

The researchers--Andrea Dietrich, Dietmar Glindemann, Hans-Joachim Staerk and Peter Kuschk, all from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg--published their findings in the Oct. 20, 2006, Angewandte Chemie International Edition.


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Havelock North mushroom farm odour complaints hit 300 in just 18 months

Neighbours of a Havelock North mushroom farm continue to complain to Hawke's Bay Regional Council about its odour. Te Mata Mushroom Company employs 120 people and has been operating out of its Brookvale Rd site in Hawke's Bay for more than 50 years. It was once a rural farm but due to residential development in the area over the years it is now within a few hundred metres of houses. Some locals say the odours coming from the farm have become worse over time. So far this year Hawke's Bay Regional Council has received 65 odour-related complaints about the farm, building on the 248 made last year.
Te Mata Mushroom Company owner Michael Whittaker told Stuff he felt the company had been bullied over the years.
"I think personally, we have [been bullied] ... there's been a huge amount of that, there's been a huge amount of politicking and I think there's been a huge amount of bias within the regulatory side.

Lisa Sargison started a petition in support of Te Mata Mu…

EPA fines JBS Australia $15,000 for breaches at Scone Abattoir

THE NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has hit JBS Australia Pty Limited with a $15,000 fine for alleged breaches of its Environment Protection Licence at Scone Abattoir.

The matters came to light during an EPA inspection on March 18 this year.

EPA acting director Hunter Lindsay Fulloon said the EPA alleged the company had failed to operate plant and equipment in a proper and efficient manner.

"An EPA officer inspected the rendering plant at the abattoir and observed a large roller door into the abattoir was being left open, when it is a requirement to keep this closed when not in use to help minimise odours," he explained.

"The process of rendering converts waste animal tissue into useable proteins.
  This can produce strong odours.
   It is alleged that for 16 days, by failing to repair the roller door after it was damaged by a truck, JBS Australia failed to operate in a proper and efficient manner and potentially exposed the surrounding community to offensive odour…

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