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Offensive odours and smells also contribute to the level of air pollution in our local communities. They may be harmful to our health and affect the use and enjoyment of property.

Smells from industrial and agricultural activities are common causes of complaints to local councils. Councils investigate all complaints and can treat the smell as a statutory nuisance under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (EPA).
It is often difficult to determine whether a smell constitutes a statutory nuisance. That depends on intensity, frequency, whether it is injurious to health and whether it lingers long enough to affect the reasonable enjoyment of property.
Domestic Smells
You can also contact your local council if you are bothered by a smell from a neighbour's house or garden. Domestic smells are not normally treated as statutory nuisances, but the source of the smell may be covered by other laws or regulations. For example, under other parts of the EPA 1990, a local authority can take action where an accumulation of waste gives rise to odours that constitute a statutory nuisance. Local authorities can also use public health laws to deal with smells coming from filthy or vermin-infested premises.


Section 79 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 on statutory nuisance

Section 80 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 on local government's powers on statutory nuisance smells

Section 82 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 setting out steps you can take if you are affected by a statutory nuisance smell

Section 83 of the Public Health Act 1936 on smells caused by filthy or verminous premises

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