How do you raise awareness about gas leaks? Bring the smell of stray fossil fuels directly to the people.
Two major New York gas utilities, New York State Electric And Gas (NYSEG) and Rochester Gas & Electric (RG&E), will include scratch-and-sniff inserts containing the smell of leaked natural gas in customers’ electric bills this month, according to The Journal News’ Joseph Spector.
“We put a special odorant in natural gas so that our customers can easily detect any leaks,” Mark Lynch, president of NYSEG and RG&E, said in a statement. “Whenever anyone smells natural gas at their home or business, they should get up, get out and call their utility or 911 from a neighbour’s phone.”
Sulfur compounds are added to natural gas, which is otherwise odorless, to help detect leaks. So the patch will basically smell like rotten eggs. Here’s what it’ll look like: