News and Press


All News


More Tweets

Permits/Licenses
Air Pollution Control Preconstruction Permits
Air Pollution Control Operating Permits
Freshwater Wetlands
Septic (ISDS/OWTS) Records
Septic (ISDS/OWTS) Licensing
Stormwater Permitting Info
All Other Water Permits
Aboveground Storage Tank Registration
Underground Storage Tanks
Permitted Waste Transporters
Online Hunting/Fishing
Boating/Fishing/Hunting
Boat Registration Renewal
Rec Freshwater Fishing Licenses
Rec Saltwater Fishing Licenses
Marine Fisheries License Renewals
Shellfish Harvester Certification
Online Renewals
Agriculture Product Permit Renewals
Hazardous Waste Transporter Permit Renewals
Medical Waste Generator Registration
UST Registration Renewal
Marine Fisheries License Renewals
Online Permit Searches
Multi-Sector General Permits
Non-Contact Cooling Water Permits
Septic (OWTS) Records After 1990
Septic (OWTS) Records Before 1990
Wetlands Permits
Remediation General Permits
Other Resources
Application Forms
Permit Application Center
Request a File Review
Rules and Regulations

Odors in Conimicut: Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) Background Info

Hydrogen sulfide is a gas with a foul odor of rotten eggs.

  • Some individuals are sensitive to odors of hydrogen sulfide at levels of just a few parts per billion (ppb).
  • Most people find hydrogen sulfide odors objectionable at 10 ppb, the RI DEM secondary standard.
  • The odor of hydrogen sulfide can be nauseating, causing those exposed to feel sick to their stomachs.
 

Communities impacted by hydrogen sulfide are primarily affected by its foul odor.

  • Although high levels of hydrogen sulfide can be irritating and cause a variety of health effects, irritation and respiratory effects are not excepted to occur at levels below 30 ppb, the Minimum Risk Level established by the US Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.
  • Some individuals are extremely sensitive to the odors of hydrogen sulfide. Health effects associated with individual sensitivity to odors are relieved once the individuals leave the area affected by the odors.
  • Occupational standards for hydrogen sulfide of 10,000 ppb are not appropriate for evaluating community exposures.
 

Environmental levels of hydrogen sulfide are normally quite low.

  • Hydrogen sulfide is produced during the decay of sewage, garbage, or other material. Normally, only very small amounts are present in the air.
  • In Rhode Island, communities adjacent to landfills, sewage treatment plants and composting facilities have been impacted by hydrogen sulfide.
  • Hydrogen sulfide levels in air usually decline within a day, once sources have been removed.