Noise Pollution

Noise Pollution

Noise as a Pollutant “Any sound, that has the potential to cause disturbance, discomfort or psychological stress to a. Subject e: Xposed to it, or any sound, that could cause actual physiological harm to a subject exposed to it, or physical damage to any structure exposed to it, is known as noise.” Harmful effects are defined as “negative effects on human health” Noise sensitive locations are defined as: “Any dwelling house, hotel or hostel, health building, educational establishment, place of worship or entertainment, or any other facility or other area of high amenity which affords proper enjoyment requires the absence of noise at nuisance levels.” Noise is almost ubiquitous. Many normal everyday activities lead to the production of sounds, some of which are regarded as noise. Noise from traffic, lawnmowers, household appliances, concerts, and industrial activities and so on, are considered commonplace. In most cases the majority of people scarcely notice these noises and are not bothered by them, but in some cases people can perceive noise as a nuisance. Such people may be more sensitive than others, or may find themselves in particularly noisy situations, or may be annoyed by noise because they want to sleep, or relax in a quiet atmosphere. In some cases, noise may present such a nuisance as to actually bring about a negative effect on the health of those exposed to it. Noise Measuring The EPA goes on to explain that in order to assess whether intervention is needed to prevent, control or minimize noise, it is necessary to be able to quantify it. And ascribe a scale of measurement to it. It is not a8 simple a science as one might think. Noise is usually measured on the decibel scale, which is a logarithmic scale of sound intensity. For human noise response, the decibel scale is adjusted slightly to compensate for slight aberrations in the way the human ear “hears” sound along the scale. This adjusted scale is known as the A weighted decibel scale, and the units of the scale are d BA. The EPA has produced a table, which describes how various decibel levels might sounds as follows: DBA Description o Absolute silence. 25 Very quiet room. 35 Rural night-time setting. No wind. 55 Day-time, busy roadway 0.5 km away. 70 Busy restaurant. 85 Very busy pub. Voice has to be raised to be heard. 100 Disco or rock concert. 120 Uncomfortably loud. Conversation impossible. 140 Noise causing pain in ears.