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Author(s): Voorburg, J.H.
Publication Date: January 1, 1994
Reference: Animal Waste Management. REUR Technical Series 34. FAO, Rome. 1994. p. 5-17.
Country: Netherlands


For farmers, it is interesting to control ammonia and odour with a single measure. However, ammonia and odours have different impact regarding the environment thus the motivation for investments from farmers to control ammonia or odour are different. In the Netherlands were animal density is high, the control of both odour and ammonia became necessary as for other countries with lower animal density, odour is the first priority. As most measures to reduce emissions are not economically profitable, attention has to be given on measures that are applied where the emissions are important, as for the Netherlands the manure landspreading representing 1/2 the ammonia emission and a high proportion of the odour complaints. More effective proteins feeding will have an impact on the N excretion as urea and uric acid, thus lowering the ammonia concentration and emission. Housing systems that limits emission have also to be considered and the way manure is stored has also an impact. Outside manure tanks would be a better measure in reducing ammonia emission than in reducing odour emission. Housing systems with litter would result in odour control by lowering odor emission but not in the total N emissions (less ammonia but more NO, N2O than standard systems). Manure treatment have an effect on the emission however as anaerobic digestion reduces odour emission, it doesn’t reduce ammonia emission and as acidification prevent the ammonia emission, it has little effect on odor. Measures that reduce ammonia emission cannot be automatically considered as being effective in odor reduction and conversely. The control of ammonia has to be regulated otherwise the farmers tend to consider odours as a higher priority.

This article gives a general view of the situation and means to reduce ammonia and odour emissions. The need for regulation on ammonia control is stressed as it is generally costly and odour control is consider the first priority with its direct impact on the neighborhood.

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