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Noise Pollution – An Overview Renesha Singh and Govind Pandey* ABSTRACT: The study aims to review the problem of noise pollution in the wake of its ill effect on the life of the people. The survey of the noise levels in various cities of India point out that main sources of noise pollution are loudspeakers and traffic. Major effects of noise pollution include interference with the communication, sleep disturbances, and reduced efficiency. Generally, a request to reduce or stop the noise is made out by the aggrieved party. However, complaints to the administration and police have also been accepted as a way of solving this menace. Public education appears to be the best method as suggested by the respondents. KEY WORDS: Noise Pollution, Sound, Leq dB, India, CPCB, Population, Sustainable development . INTRODUCTION Noise is defined as unwanted sound. The word noise is derived from Latin word, Nausea. Noise may be defined as ‘wrong sound in the wrong place, at the wrong time’ [1]. Noise Pollution is one the major concern in some countries while a neglected dimensions in the other [2]. It is more a problem because we are often used to it at the cost of peace and discipline and even sometimes health. Thus may not seem to be, but it definitely disturbs our whole system and often we become a part of it knowingly or unknowingly. Various studies have been done in this area at different places, using different methods, by different authors. AMBIENT NOISE It is the total noise associated with a given environment and usually comprises sounds from many sources both near and far field. Indoor and outdoor noise may together combine to form background noise which adds even more to noise in the environment. Sources The sources of outdoor may be construction sites, road traffic or the noise generated from aircrafts and trains. The noise generated from industries and factories are responsible for this. Further, the indoor noise may have sources like phones, television, electrical and other appliances. Author: Renesha Singh is currently pursuing Master of Technology program in Environmental Engineering in MMM. Engg. College, Gorakhpur India, E-mail: *Co-Author: Govind Pandey is Associate Prof. in MMMEC Gorakhpur India, E-mail:

The main factors of noise pollution are considered as population and urbanization, which if controlled all the sources will be a little contributor to the noise pollution. Effects The exposure to noise levels beyond the permissible limits for a long duration may cause adverse effects on human health, birds, animals, and property. This includes the effect on physical, mental health as well as other behavioral effects. The effect on physical health may be hearing impairment, cardiovascular disturbances, and pregnancy complications. The recent studies have suggested that noise levels of around 50 dB(A)at night may also increase the risk of myocardial infarction or acute myocardial infarction (often known as heart attack by the common people) by chronically elevating cloistral (a hormone produced in adrenal gland) production. Pathak et al., (2008) in his study concluded that traffic noise became main reasons of headache, high blood pressure and other stresses among the exposed persons in their working places in Varanasi City [3]. Studies have also shown that exposure to excessive noise during pregnancy may result in high-frequency hearing loss in newborns, and may be associated with prematurity and intrauterine growth retardation, along with cochlear damage. The sleep disturbances due to noise of any type can have hard impact on mental health and downfall in working efficiency of a person. Other behavioral effects may include impaired task performance, annoyance reactions and personal comfort. Tinnitus, defined as the sensation of sound in the absence of an external sound source resulting in ringing type sound, is also an adverse effect [4]. Interrupted noise may also result in accidents. WHO studies have shown the several effects on species like birds and other animals [5].



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Control Any noise problem can be defined in terms of source, transmission path and receiver (in this context, a worker) and noise control may take the form of altering any one of these or all of these elements [6]. Reducing noise at domestic level, prohibition of loud speakers, maintenance of machines and speaking in low voice may deliberately reduce the noise at source. Installation of barriers and green belt development which has already been implemented in some countries can prove to be a good method of controlling noise in transmission path. Routing of traffic in a proper manner may also diverge the path of noise. The protection equipments and job rotations of workers may reduce the exposure of noise to workers at receiver level.

On the basis of location of these sites, they were categorized in industrial, commercial, residential and silent zones respectively. The average noise level at industrial, commercial, residential and silence area were 74.27 dB (A), 65.53 dB (A), 58.78 dB (A) and 50.12 dB (A) respectively. The results showed that there was an enhanced pressure of noise at all sites due rise in the number of vehicles. All the site study showed sound levels greater than the prescribed limits of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). Table 2: Ambient air quality standards in respect of noise

Prevention As said prevention is better than cure, after controlling the noise, prevention of noise by regularly monitoring can be a good thought. Public cooperation can be obtained by providing proper education regarding the effects and control of noise to the people. Awareness of it can be a good prevention step. NOISE SCENARIO IN INDIA Problems of pollution along with noise pollution are increasing with time especially due to increase in number of vehicles for transportation. Continuous monitoring of noise levels was carried out in 2011 at six different sites in the Kolhapur City [7]. Table 1: Status of Noise levels in various zones in Kolhapur City

Chauhan et al., (2010) showed higher level of noise pollution in residential, commercial, silent and industrial zones of Moradabad city [8]. Chauhan and Pandey, (2010) also found higher level of noise pollution in different selected zones of Dehradun city of state of Uttarakhand [9]. Ganwar et. al., (2006) also reported that noise level in Bareilly was slightly higher than prescribed limit of the Central Pollution Control Board of India [10]. Kisku et. al., (2006), too reported that in residential areas, noise ranged between 66.7 to 78.8 and 52.9 to 56.3, in commercial cum traffic areas 74.9 to 84.2 and 68.1 to 74.7 and in industrial areas 76.8 to 77.2 and 73.2 to 73.1 dB (A) during day and night time respectively at Lucknow city [11]. Highest noise levels ranging between 82-92 dB (A) was recorded in commercial locations, 65.5-75.6 dB (A) in residential areas, 65.1-75.2 dB(A) in silence zone in Guwahati city of Assam by Wazir Alam, (2011) [12]. The minimum and maximum noise levels reported ranged between 56.5 to 102.3 dB at all the selected sites in the residential zone of Haridwar city [13]. In case of commercial zone the minimum and maximum SPL ranged between 56.7 to 108.9 dB. On the other hand at all selected industrial zone the maximum and minimum SPL ranged between 52.4 to 65.8 dB.



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The main reasons behind the increasing noise levels were considered as more and more registration of vehicles by Tandel Bhavan et. al.(2011).

Figure 1: The map showing noise level in dB (A), between 7 am to 9 in Guwahati However in the case of all selected silent zone the maximum and minimum ranged between 45.0 to 87.8 dB as reported by Chauhan Avinashet al. (2010). Similar, noise increment was recorded in Gorakhpur city of Uttar Pradesh by Renesha Singh (2013), the reasons behind given traffic and indiscipline among the mob and the noise variations were shockingly as high as 180% specially in silent zone [14].

Figure 3: Growth of vehicles registered at Surat city [15] CONCLUSION Due to urbanization, there is a huge increase in the vehicular population on the urban corridors. In India, transportation demand in urban areas continues to increase rapidly as a result of both population growth and changes in travel patterns. During the first decade of the 21st century only, the urban areas in the country confront a historic transportation crisis that has become a planning war against increasing mobility gridlock and noise pollution. The researchers seem to be alarmed by this pollution making space in the society now with much increasing rate. However, still a lot needs to be done for sustainable development like awaking people and implementing the Noise Act, 2000 before it is too late and we are gripped in this pollution also like we have been in other types of pollution. REFERENCES

Figure 2: Silent Zone Noise Level deviations of Day and Night hours in percentage in Gorakhpur City


NarendraSingh& S.C. Davar (2004). Noise Pollution: Sources, Effects and Control. Journal of Human Ecology 16(3). Pp- 181-187.


Oyedepo Sunday Olayinka (2012). Noise Pollution in Urban Areas: The neglected Dimensions. Environmental Research Journal, 6(4), pp. 259-271.


Pathak V, et al. (2008). Evaluation of traffic noise pollution and attitudes of exposed




individuals in working place. Atmos. Environ. 42(16).pp 3892–3898 4.

Frank Theakston (2011). Burden of Disease from Environmental Noise. WHO Regional Office of Europe.


Paul E. Kaseloo (2005). Synthesis of Noise effects on Wildlife Populations. International Conference on Ecology and Transportation, Eds. Irwin CL, Garrett P, McDermott KP. Center for Transportation and the Environment, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC: pp. 3335.


Harris C M (1979), Hand Book of noise control, McGraw Hill, USA.


Mangalekar S B (2012). Study of Noise in Kolhapur City, Maharashtra India. Universal Journal of Environment Science and Technology, 2(1), pp. 65-69.


Chauhan, A., et al. (2010). Assessment of Noise Level Status in Different Areas of Moradabad City. Report and Opinion, 2(5):59-61.


Chauhan, A. and Pandey, K. K. (2010). Study of noise level in different zones of Dehradun City, Uttarakhand. Report and Opinion, 2(7):65-68.

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14. Renesha Singh (2013). A Study of Noise in Gorakhpur City of Uttar Pradesh India. International Journal of Structural and Civil Engineering Research, 2(3), pp- 241-249. 15. Tandel Bhavan, et al. (2011). Urban Corridor Noise Pollution: A case study of Surat city, India. International Conference on Environment and Industrial Innovation (12), pp 144- 148.

10. Gangwar K. K. et. al. (2006). Noise pollution status at four selected intersections in commercial areas of Bareilly Metropolitan city. Him. J. Env. And Zoo. 20(1), 75-77. 11. Kisku, G.C., et al. 2006. Profile of noise pollution in Lucknow city and its impact on environment. J. Environ. Biol., 27(2). pp 409412. 12. Wazir Alam (2011). GIS based Assessment of Noise in Guwahati City of Assam India. International Journal of Env. Sciences. 2(2), pp731-740. 13. Chauhan Avinash (2010). Assessment of noise level in different zones of Haridwar City Uttarakhand, Researcher ,2(7), pp. 56-59.



Noise Pollution – An Overview  

IJBSTR Publication (ISSN 2320-6020 Online)

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