First results of a new Odour Citizen Science Project in Falconara, Italy

 Odornet ARPA  Odor.Net is a real-time monitoring project of olfactory nuisance in the city of Falconara, Italy, launched by ARPA Marche last June, carried out through the use of a simple APP for smartphones and tablets. After 7 months of work, some preliminary results have been presented.

   The "" project launched by ARPAM (Agenzia Regionale per la Protezione Ambientale delle Marche) in collaboration with the Region and the Municipality of Falconara Marittima, started on the 22nd of June 2019 and nowadays has 252 registered users on the territory (those who have downloaded the APP), which have reported 1.205 odour issues via this app. These results set up this project as one of the interesting citizen science projects related to odours launched in the last months.

   The Italian city of Falconara Marittima has always represented, from an environmental point of view, an important and complex case due to the presence of several environmental pressures of anthropogenic origin concentrated inside or near the densely populated urban area.

  In October 2019 a first sampling station for odour was installed in order to identify a protocol to activate itself on the basis of the number of reports received from citizen. In fact, thanks to this protocol, which takes into account the number of reports received in a specific time interval, their intensity, and additional parameters, ARPAM is therefore preparing to start the second phase of the project, characterized by the activation of the sampling systems "in real time", automatically and / or remotely, to measure the chemical substances associated with odour issues reported through the Odor.Net application.

  The latest data made official by ARPAM (sent into a special newsletter to all registered users) provide the updated report on 31/01/2020, and therefore show the progress of the project over a period just over 7 months.

  The updated report shows the progress of the project over this period of 7 months, with a study of the data collected:

   • Number of reports
   • Odour characteristics
   • The odour intensity perceived and any odour-related diseases
   • The more affected areas 
   • The wind direction associated with the largest number of reports
   • The optional "Notes" field has provided more details

   In a previous stage, a first data report of the Odor.Net project was published by ARPAM. This recent set of information (updated report on 31/01/2020) is also in line with the set of data collected over the previous period.

  This is not the first project of citizen science related to odours in Italy. The Regional Environmental Ministry of Sicily commenced a study at the end of August 2019 in the area of Syracuse, whose preliminary results were published on January this year.

   For more information, you can have a look at the infographic created by ARPA Marche here (in Italian).


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Cyntia Izquierdo

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