New to proactive environmental management software? Here's what you should know

‘You can’t manage what you can’t measure.’


13 min

Although a familiar statement to many environmental managers, site-generated air qualitynoisewater qualityodourdust and vibration emissions have always been a notoriously difficult challenge.

For many years environmental monitoring was a repetitive and cumbersome task. The process of collecting real numbers to review was no easy feat and maintaining monitoring equipment was a resource consuming exercise. In addition, downloading and organising this data relied on the use of inefficient software.

Between downloads, some of the data or in particularly unfortunate cases, all of it could end up missing or getting corrupt. Whether or not this had happened couldn’t be established without someone physically going to the site and intervening manually.

However, things have changed in the recent past.

Proactive environmental management software today is much more user friendly and removes the need for users to be subject matter experts to make critical decisions. Users of any technical level can now access accurate, in-depth and real-time data for actionable insights, making the management of complex environmental challenges much simpler. Operators can make faster, confident decisions on complex issues, whether they’re working to keep air qualitynoisewater qualityodourdust or vibration within thresholds.

Advances in environmental management software have accelerated a sustainable, prosperous future between businesses, regulatory bodies and communities—and continues to do so.

When you’re taking an initial look into proactive environmental management software, there are a few key areas that are helpful to understand. For instance, the benefits that come with using proactive environmental management software and how the technology compares to ESG software platforms that simply offer data management capabilities.

Here’s an overview of what you need to know.

First, what is proactive environmental management software?

To answer this question, we should first look at the most important stakeholder. The end user.

As environmental or sustainability managers at the world’s major airportswaste management siteswater treatment facilities, large open-pit mines and industrial sites would know—finding the balance between staying compliant, maintaining profitability and ensuring community trust can be far from easy. However, with proactively environmental management software, navigating these complex responsibilities can be done in with confidence and accuracy.

Environmental management software future proofs industrial or municipal facilities by providing accurate, real-time environmental data. It uses environmental intelligence (EI) to compile advanced insights based on local weather forecasts and real-time monitoring data collected at the facilities.

Hyperlocal weather forecasts and monitoring data from multiple environmental parameters can be used to guide operational decisions. The information that the facilities need to avoid chronic problems is right at their fingertips – which can be detrimental to protecting their reputation with the community and regulators.

Depending on the specific software being used, operators can seamlessly view data on complex emissions issues that are difficult to mitigate without context. This includes air quality, noise, water quality, odour, dust and vibration.

The environmental management software offerings that are available to facilities span a wide array of different categories such as carbon management, water quality management or high-level data that tracks corporate sustainability goals.

While most environmental management software focusses on real-time information, it is important to note that historical data is often only beneficial for facilities to track issues that occurred in the past. Most ESG software offerings around data management don’t provide insights on what is happening now, or what may happen tomorrow.

Proactive environmental management software is easier for not only facilities to interpret, but also communities. Establishing transparent communication with the neighbouring communities and sharing useful insights can assist with protecting the site’s social licence to operate. Moreover, platforms can provide communities with a point of contact to submit their own observations or complaints.

Envirosuite’s proactive environmental management software offerings are examples that stands out with features such as real-time monitoring, hyperlocal weather forecasting, predictive modelling and potential threshold alerts. Facilities receive instant feedback to run their operations, making it possible to manage environmental impact in real-time – without costly hold-ups in the process.

How does proactive environmental management software differ from ESG software platforms?

Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) data management analyses an operation’s overall impact on its environment, community and surroundings. ESG software platforms report on parameters such as carbon emissions, generated waste, water and energy usage at facilities. These platforms provide a detailed, transparent picture of any operation and how they track against sustainability metrics.

Alternatively, proactive environmental management software collects much more in-depth data relating to the facility’s impact on surrounding areas – whether that’s due to site-generated dust, vibration, odour or similar by-products of their operations. These parameters are difficult to monitor, measure and analyse with accuracy without the aid of proactive environmental management software.

Data frequency is another area where ESG data management platforms and environmental management software differ. While ESG software platforms would be adequate for visualising monthly performance of your site's emissions data, proactive environmental management software rapidly analyses it in real-time to give you the information to mitigate issues as they are unfolding.

ESG data management platforms and proactive environmental management software also have different system integration capabilities. ESG platforms are usually introduced as stand-alone systems. But, on the other hand, environmental management software can be seamlessly integrated with existing monitoring networks. This can come in handy when you want to extract sensor readings and other relevant data when managing environmental impacts.

How does proactive environmental management software leverage environmental intelligence?

Environmental management software leverages EI to provide industries with user-friendly, real-time and highly accurate ways to monitor, measure and interpret complex environmental data.

EI combines meteorological forecasting with real-time and predictive data of environmental parameters such as air, noise, vibration and water quality to provide actionable insights for reducing environmental impact. High-resolution weather models are configurable to your facility’s location, which means you know precisely how current conditions and forecasts will impact your operations.

Moreover, industrial sites that monitor environmental parameters such as air quality and odour also benefit from capabilities such as reverse trajectory modelling. Users can instantly run reverse trajectory modelling techniques to accurately track the source of emission events within their facility, or outside of its boundaries.

Starting at the complaint location, reverse trajectory modelling combines real-time data and advanced algorithms to work backwards and pinpoint the source of an issue. It enables operators to confirm or refute responsibility of environmental incidents caused by their facilities.

The benefits of using proactive environmental management software

Acting on automated alerts for potential threshold exceedances

A core benefit of environmental management software is that facilities can receive alerts on potential threshold exceedances for multiple parameters including noise, dust, air quality, odour and vibration. This forewarning is invaluable when it comes to mitigating emissions events as they unfold.

Automated alerts enable operators to take informed decisions to prevent breaching compliance and avoid hefty penalties.

Alerts for threshold exceedances for odour at a wastewater treatment facility.

Making operational decisions with greater confidence

Operators can also make more confident operational decisions when utilising proactive environmental management software. With the most up-to-date data at their fingertips, there is no ambiguity around emerging environmental risks. Thus, decisions for managing complex issues can be made without hesitation and potentially costly hold-ups.

If problems that arise bring operations to a standstill, operators can avoid chaotic or reactive responses while under pressure. Timely incident responses pose fewer safety risks, are less stressful for employees and attract less community pressure or negative publicity.

Scheduling operational activities with advanced risk forecasting

Facilities can optimise operational outcomes by preventing unscheduled downtime and minimising the frequency of unplanned stoppages.

Environmental management software enables operators to receive early warnings of unfolding weather events. As such, maintenance activities can be completed at the time that will cause the least disruption to usual operations, minimising the likelihood of deadlines being impacted. Envirosuite’s proactive environmental management software provides a 72-hour risk reports, so maintenance activities can be scheduled in optimum weather conditions.

Predictive risk reports can provide a 72-hour window into the future for operators to plan for shifts with high emissions risks.

Maintaining environmental compliance

Constantly growing environmental regulation on industries has put businesses under additional pressure when carrying out their out day-to-day operations.

Envirosuite’s proactive environmental management software helps some of the world’s most environmentally constrained businesses with actionable insights and real-time monitoring data to keep track of their operational impact on the environment. Modern EI platforms ensure facilities can transparently demonstrate compliance with automated reports of accurate real-time and historical data on hand.

Tangible cost savings with minimal operational downtime

In addition to being inconvenient, environmental compliance breaches come with a hefty price tag for operators. Compliance breaches can be further exacerbated unexpected changes in weather conditions.

Proactive environmental management software ensures facilities can plan their operations ahead of time with some platforms, such as Envirosuite, providing up to 72-hour window into the future. Facilities utilise EI software’s predictive modelling technology to plan activities around weather risks and minimise operational downtime.

Odour dispersion modelling and virtual alert points at a landfill site.

Moreover, facilities can also determine whether an issue is stemming from their site with greater accuracy and avoid spending considerable time trying to amend non-existent problems.

Build social licence to operate

As populations grow communities are expanding into buffer distances, so there is less room for error at facilities. At the same time, facilities are growing to support increasing demand. In addition, people are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of clean air and water and of limiting the impact of noise pollution.

With environmental management software open lines of communication between sites and the community are built. Community members can submit information easily, while also being able to access helpful data and insights. The transparent relationships established through this results in better outcomes for all.

Envirosuite’s environmental management software solutions

Envirosuite technology represents over 30 years of research and consulting experience across diverse industries and environmental issues.

We provide a range of EI platforms for all environments:

  • EVS Omnis: Cloud-based environmental management software. Features include real-time monitoring data, hyperlocal weather forecasting and emissions modelling for air quality, dust, water quality, odour, noise and vibration.

  • EVS Water: EVS Water is a digital twin that combines water modelling and machine learning. It's a powerful solution for engineers, plant operators and asset managers to improve both operational and environmental performance.

  • EVS Aviation: World leading, comprehensive airport environmental management software for deep analytics on top of rich datasets. It delivers insights that reduce environmental impact, while improving operational efficiency for airports.

  • EVS IoT: Environmental monitoring devices for airports, industrial operations and urban areas in need of air quality, odour, weather, noise or vibration monitoring. EVS IoT includes the use of hardware like eNose AmbientNoise Logger and Vibration Monitoring Terminal.

Getting started with environmental management software

Envirosuite follows a three-step process for implementing environmental management software:

  1. Data Review: Speak with our specialists, who will answer any questions you may have about operational or environmental challenges at your site.

  2. Platform Selection: We build an understanding of your priorities and the challenges you’re facing, and then provide environmental management software solutions for tackling these.

  3. Automation: If needed, we provide recommendations for third-party hardware that aligns in with your pre-existing sensor networks and environmental monitoring.

Discover Envirosuite’s environmental management software

Designed for rapid deployment, our monitoring and forecasting solutions can be implemented in as little as a few days. Contact us today to talk with our team about your environmental management software requirements.