Noise can be defined as an unwanted or undesired sound. Decibel is the standard unit for measurement of sound. Usually 80 db is the level at which sound becomes physically painful. And can be termed as noise. Humans, animals, plants and even inert objects like buildings and bridges have been victims of the increasing noise pollution caused in the world. Be it human or machine-created, noise disrupts the activity and balance of life. While traffic dons the cap of being the largest noise maker throughout the world, there are many others that add to it, making our globe susceptible to its effects. The effect of noise pollution is multi-faceted and inter-related. In the following lines, we have provided some of the causes and effects of noise pollution.
Causes Of Noise Pollution
- Traffic noise is the main source of noise pollution caused in urban areas. With the ever-increasing number of vehicles on road, the sound caused by the cars and exhaust system of autos, trucks, buses and motorcycles is the chief reason for noise pollution.
- With the low flying military aircrafts soaring over the national parks, wasteland and other vacant areas, the level of noise pollution has drastically increased in these previously unaffected zones.
- People living beside railway stations put up with a lot of noise from locomotive engines, horns and whistles and switching and shunting operation in rail yards. This is one of the major sources of noise pollution.
- To meet the demands of the basic necessity of living, the construction of buildings, highways and city streets causes a lot of noise. Pneumatic hammers, air compressors, bulldozers, loaders, dump trucks and pavement breakers are the major sources of noise pollution in construction sites.
- Though not a prime reason, industrial noise adds to the noise pollution. Machinery, motors and compressors used in the industries create a lot of noise which adds to the already detrimental state of noise pollution.
- Plumbing, boilers, generators, air conditioners and fans create a lot of noise in the buildings and add to the prevailing noise pollution.
- Household equipments, such as vacuum cleaners, mixers and some kitchen appliances are noisemakers of the house. Though they do not cause too much of problem, their effect cannot be neglected.
Effects Of Noise Pollution
- Deafness, temporary or permanent, is one of the most prevalent effects of noise pollution. Mechanics, locomotive drivers, telephone operators etc all have their hearing impairment.
- The first and foremost effect of noise is a decrease in the efficiency in working. Research has proved the fact that human efficiency increases with noise reduction.
- Too much of noise disturbs the rhythms of working, thereby affecting the concentration required for doing a work. Noise of traffic or the loud speakers or different types of horns divert the attention, thus causing harm in the working standard.
- Fatigue caused is another effect of noise. Due to lack of concentration, people need to devote more time to complete their task, which leads to tiredness and fatigue.
- Noise pollution acts as a stress invigorator, increasing the stress levels among people.
- Sometimes, being surrounded by too much of noise, people can be victims of certain diseases like blood pressure, mental illness, etc.
- Noise pollution indirectly affects the vegetation. Plants require cool & peaceful environment to grow. Noise pollution causes poor quality of crops.
- Animals are susceptible to noise pollution as well. It damages the nervous system of the animals.
- Noise indirectly weakens the edifice of buildings, bridges and monuments. It creates waves, which can be very dangerous and harmful and put the building in danger condition.