Essay: Noise pollution and its effects

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Noise pollution is the excessive noise that may is harmful to human and animal life. The source of most outdoor noise worldwide is mainly caused by machines and transportation systems  aircraft, and trains. Exterior noise is known as environmental noise. Ineffective urban development  creates noise pollution because adjacent industrial and residential buildings create noise pollution in the residential areas. Indoor noise is caused by machines, building activities, and music performances, in workplaces. Noise-induced hearing loss can be caused by outside or inside noise. Noise pollution affects both health and behavior. Unwanted sound (noise) can damage psychological health. Noise pollution can cause high-stress levels, hypertension, tinnitus, hearing loss, sleep disturbances, and other harmful body damages.

High noise levels are also responsible for heart problems in humans, an escalated blood pressure, and an increase in stress and the narrowing of blood vessels and an increased incidence of coronary artery disease. In animals, noise can increase the risk of death by altering predator or prey detection and avoidance, interfere with reproduction and navigation, and contribute to the permanent hearing loss. Sound becomes unwanted when it either interferes with normal activities such as sleeping, conversation, or disrupts or diminishes one’s quality of life. Severe experience with noise can cause noise-induced hearing loss. Noise pollution also annoys people.  A study by Spanish researchers found that households are willing to pay for noise reduction.

Animal species that rely on mating calls during the reproduction season are usually unable to hear these calls because of excessive noise generation by humans. Consequently, they are not able to reproduce which has caused reduced population of such animals. Animals that also rely on sound signals to guide them get lost and do not migrate because of too much human-produced noise. Animals are now becoming louder which has further added to noise pollution. Loud noise also hampers the ability of humans to communicate freely and without problems. Noise  can be effectively reduced by using   noise barriers, reducing vehicle speeds, modification of road surface texture, reducing the use of heavy vehicles, implementation of traffic controls for smooth vehicle flow to reduce braking and acceleration, and tire design.

An essential aspect in making these strategies work is a computer model for roadway noise that is capable of addressing local topography, meteorology, traffic operations, and hypothetical mitigation. Costs of building in mitigation can be modest, provided these solutions are sought in the planning stage of a roadway project. Aircraft noise can be reduced by using quieter jet engines. Altering paths and time of day runway has benefitted residents near airports. Industrial noise has been reduced because of redesigning of industrial equipment, shock mounted assemblies and physical barriers in the workplace. . These programs encourage buying tools that make less noise  and request manufacturers to design quieter equipment.

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