Recently (Decreto Legislativo n. 183 issued on 15/12/2017) a new article has been inserted in the national Environmental Act in force in Italy. Its title is "Emissioni odorigene" (i.e. "Odour emissions") and it represents a step forward for the national regulation about odour in Italy, where just local (regional) regulations had been issued before.
The new regulation (Decreto Legislativo 152/2006, article 272-bis) preserves the status quo: in order to prevent and control odour emissions from industrial facilities, the Regions have the permission to establish regional regulations about odour emissions and to introduce requirements in permits (permit conditions) about odour emissions.
In order to harmonize the differences between regional regulations about odour emissions, the second paragraph of article 272-bis opts for coordination among Regions by means of the existent national working group dealing with air quality (established by the national law adopting the EU Air Quality Directive). According to article 272-bis, this working group, constituted by members from Regional Administrations, can set specific emission limit values about odours and define methods for monitoring and assessing odour impacts. While some differences among regional regulations will be unavoidable as far as emission limit values and acceptable odour impact criteria are concerned, methods and procedures for monitoring emissions and assessing odour impact should be hopefully similar over the entire national territory. Therefore many operators in the Italian market (e.g. big companies owning several facilities over the national territory, laboratories, consultancy companies) need for a technical regulation for topics not covered by European standards (e.g. odour dispersion modelling, odour management plans). Italian standardization body (UNI) is proposing some new work items in order to elaborate new technical standards serving as bases for monitoring and control odour emissions and odour impact in fields not covered by the published European standards.