Prevention of Noise Pollution: 5 Applicable Measures Discussed
Prevention of noise pollution can be achieved through; traffic infrastructural development, remote installation of industrial plants, enforcement of noise-control regulations, sustainable urban development and avoidance of overpopulation/crowding, and use of good-quality sound systems.
This article discusses measures for the prevention of noise pollution, as follows;
1). Traffic Infrastructural Development (as one of the Measures for Prevention of Noise Pollution)
One of the main causes of noise pollution is automobile traffic on highways.
To reduce noise pollution caused by traffic, measures can be taken to optimize both the vehicles themselves, as well as the traffic management infrastructure like flexible pavements and bridges that serve as transit pathways.
Improving traffic infrastructure is a very important prevention measure for noise pollution because it directly influences the volume and dynamics of automobile transport, which in turn determines the noise-effect of such traffic on the environment.
Road-dualization, noise-barriers, construction of traffic circles and pedestrian bridges, installation of traffic lights and signs, and deployment of road transport personnel, where needed; are all steps that can be taken to optimize road traffic infrastructure and prevent highway noise pollution.
Other hazards like flooding and landslides can also be considered in traffic infrastructure schemes, so that dams and retaining walls can be constructed.
Traffic infrastructural optimization may feature measures like afforestation, where trees can be used to form a sound-barrier to prevent the propagation of noise from highways to surrounding ecosystems.
Preventing road traffic-noise pollution is an important aspect of sustainable development especially in urban areas where traffic density and noise levels are relatively high  . In such areas, taking preventive steps to curb noise from traffic can protect inhabitants from the harmful effects of noise pollution on health and work-efficiency .
Other potential solutions to noise pollution on and from highways include energy transition to renewable resources, and wide-scale adoption of electric vehicles. These steps target the main source of noise from automobiles, which is the combustion engine and its accessories.
2). Remote Installation of Industrial Plants
Industrial noise pollution is often listed alongside traffic disturbance as some of the acoustic hazards associated with urbanization .
Activities and processes like construction, mining, electricity generation, agriculture and manufacturing are all industrial concepts that are often responsible for the emission of noise from factories, power plants, mills and other industrial facilities.
Industrial noise pollution can be prevented (from affecting residential areas) by ensuring that equipment and facilities are geographically isolated from sensitive natural and manmade ecosystems. This is the core idea behind remote installation.
Lands in remote, rural areas, or lands that have been subjected to some form of degradation in the past, may serve as better choices for industrial activities than lands that are in close proximity with human settlements or important ecosystems.
However it can be observed that remote industrial installation does not protect the industrial workers who are in these facilities, from hazardous exposure to noise from equipment. What this implies is that isolating industrial facilities must be done in combination with measures to reduce noise production within these facilities.
Noise pollution-prevention is ideal as one of the objectives of sustainable manufacturing and green economic development, as it has socioeconomic benefits for all parties concerned.
Technological modification, equipment maintenance, sound-minimizing architecture and optimization of methods can help prevent noise pollution within industrial facilities.
Combining such steps with geographic isolation of industrial facilities, can address problems of high and low-frequency noises (HFN, LFN) in residential areas close to industries .
3). Enforcement of Noise-Control Regulations (as one of the Measures for Prevention of Noise Pollution)
Control and prevention measures of noise pollution include legislative steps to develop and enforce policies for noise control.
Laws against noise pollution are guidelines that specify the limit of sound output from human activities and equipment.
For example, a noise control policy may specify 50 dB as maximum sound intensity for operations in an industrial facility, event or commercial area. It is generally recommendable to use different limits in the day and night respectively, since these two periods differ in their scales of human activity.
Noise control is often integrated into environmental protection acts, although their level of enforcement is often lower than that of other types of pollution.
There is also often a challenge of coherence and unison in noise control legislature, so that many areas are either left without any legal structures to prevent noise pollution, or with disjoint, scattered and contradictive guidelines .
Enforcing applicable standards for sound output in public and residential areas can go a long way to prevent noise pollution, by forcing inhabitants and operators to cut down on activities and work-methods that are hazardously loud.
This may be seen as having a similar goal and effect as other environmental regulations like carbon taxation for mitigating air pollution and greenhouse emission.
4). Sustainable Urban Development and Avoidance Overpopulation/Crowding
Noise control can and should be treated as a crucial objective in the development of urban areas. This is because it is a form of environmental protection, which is one of the sustainable development goals .
Sustainable solutions to noise pollution include the modification of regional structures to absorb and limit the propagation of sound. For urban areas still undergoing development, noise pollution can be prevented through sound-absorbent design .
Effective urban environmental design may include tree-planting, traffic control, and sustainable building architecture, as well as wave-interceptive spatial configuration.
5). Use of Good-Quality Sound Systems (as one of the Measures for Prevention of Noise Pollution)
Electrical speakers and other artificial sound-amplifying systems can be major causes of noise pollution in social gatherings, vehicles and residential areas.
One of the ways to prevent noise pollution from such causes is the use of good-quality sound systems that can easily be regulated and have minimal anomalous sound-output.
Aside the sound-amplifiers themselves, supporting structures like a sound-proof enclosure can further assist to prevent environmental disturbance. Such structures are commonly used in radio transmission and sound-engineering, among other contexts/practices.
Measures for prevention of noise pollution are;
1. Traffic Infrastructural Development
2. Remote Installation of Industrial Plants
3. Enforcement of Noise-Control Regulations
4. Sustainable Urban Development and Avoidance Overpopulation/Crowding
5. Use of Good-Quality Sound Systems
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