Noise pollution refers to any unwanted and unpleasant sound that brings discomfort and restlessness to human beings. Like air and water pollution, noise pollution is harmful to human and animal life.
Noise pollution is also an important environmental hazard, which is becoming growingly injurious in many parts of the world. Noise beyond a particular level or decibel (unit of noise) tends to become a health and environmental hazard.
Sources of Noise Pollution
- Household appliances such as grinders, electric motor, washing machines
- Social gatherings such as marriages and other social parties
- Places of worship
- Commercial activities
- Construction activities
- Industrial activities
- Automobiles and transport system
- Power generators
- Agricultural equipment
Noise Pollution Control
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), of all the environmental pollution, noise is the easiest to control.
Noise pollution can be checked at home by −
- Turning off sound-making appliances when they are not in use.
- Shutting the door when noisy machines are being used.
- Lowering the volume of appliances such as television to a desirable level.
- Using earplugs while listening to music.
At mass level it can be checked by −
- By planting trees in large number to create vegetation buffer zones, which absorb noise.
- Public awareness about the need of control of noise pollution.
- Application of engineering control techniques such as alteration and modification of design to reduce noise from equipment and machinery, and by construction of sound barriers or the use of sound absorbers in industrial and factory sites can reduce exposure to noise to a great extent.
- Construction of institutions and hospitals away from airports, railways, and highways.
- Improved building design may also reduce the impact of noise pollution.
- Stringent legislations at central and state levels to check air pollution at workplaces, urban centers, etc.