Air Emissions and Animal Agriculture

Hydrogen Sulfide

 Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) is best known for its characteristic odor of rotten eggs. At high concentrations, hydrogen sulfide can be deadly (silo gas). Even at low concentrations, H2S is a respiratory irritant. Although hydrogen sulfide is not transported great distances, on the farm it can mix with other compounds to contribute to odor. Compared to NH3, H2S emissions are quite low; often times 10-fold or more lower than NH3 emissions. H2S forms under anaerobic conditions (absence of oxygen), so sources of H2S are largely from manure storage, whereas NH3 is emitted from both animal housing as well as manure storage areas. Some states have property line H2S standards (Iowa and Minnesota). Challenges meeting the state standard for farms have been the result of locating uncovered manure storages near the property line and/or poor farm management practices.

 

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Hydrogen Sulfide

Last Updated 09/13/2011