So, in essence, the scent of Tacoma is caused by some 100 years of industrial development around the tidal plains of Commencement Bay. And the smell itself is a mixture of natural decomposition, hydrogen sulfide, the vapors of animal representation and various industrial fumes. Tacoma, Washington, has a bad reputation. For decades, the city was shrouded in an undeniable stench.
In fact, the disgusting emanation was so bad that Bruce Springsteen said it forced him to leave town early when he was there on tour in the mid-80s. When the tide goes down, the bay contributes to the smell. But most of the smell comes from a forest of industrial chimneys built in the marshes. A stew of airborne pollutants, mainly sulfur from the Simpson Tacoma Kraft paper and pulp mill, fills the air above the city.
On good days, the smell is barely noticeable. Tacoma scent, also known as Tacoma scent, is a putrid, unpleasant odor associated with Tacoma, Washington.