AMLI Residential
Back Arrow
Back to Blog Home
Green Living

Why the world is getting louder every day

Aug 30th, 2022

If predictions are correct, by the year 2100, eighty-four percent of the world’s estimated 10.8 billion people will live in cities. Noise pollution will increase in those zones and spill over into the surrounding suburbs and rural areas that were typically considered to be quiet. We need to become more aware of the increasing noise around us.

Is the world getting louder?

Excessive noise is not good for us

Noise pollution is an undesirable sound or a sound that generates horrible discomfort on the ears. It is measured in decibels (dB), and sound levels beyond 100 dB can cause permanent hearing loss. Studies have shown that noise exposure creates annoyance, disrupts our sleep, impairs cognitive performance in school children and even increases the occurrence of hypertension and cardiovascular disease. Constant exposure to loud noises can damage eardrums and cause loss of hearing.

The bad news first

Noise pollution is also harmful to pets and to the wildlife on our planet. Increased decibels have caused animal species to change their behaviors. City birds sing louder, and frogs that live near highways have marked vocal variations. These changes can have damaging effects on their mating success and the rearing of their offspring. Human-made sources of noise can be a threat to marine life as well, posing a threat to dolphins, whales, fish and other sea animals. All animal habitats are negatively affected by noise.

 According to the researchers at the National Park Service’s Natural Sounds and Night Skies Division, the acoustics of the American outdoors doubles or triples every 30 years. In Europe, more than 1 in 5 people are exposed to enough road noise to hurt their health. In fact, extreme noise can be found in all the major cities from New York to London, Cairo, Paris, Delhi and Beijing.

The growing noise pollution stems from many different causes. Population growth and urban sprawl are both factors. Additionally, lack of proper anti-noise regulations, the use of electronics, busy airports and more and more vehicles on our roads all contribute to the rising decibel levels.

Noise pollution is a real problem. It is damaging our health, affecting our quality of life and disrupting our ecosystems. And, experts are not predicting a decrease in the level of noise given the fact that we are a technology-based society. We are more and more reliant on the noisy devices that we have created.

The good news

As a society, we have begun to recognize the effects of noise pollution and have come up with some ways to combat it.  

Reduce noise inside the office and home by simply closing the windows to keep out the annoying sounds. Open them at quieter times of the day.

Turn off appliances at home and at the office. The use of the television, games and computers can create stress on our ears. When using appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines, try shutting the door where those items are located to cut down on the exposure. Or, trying running those appliances after you have left the house.

Use earplugs to keep loud noises at a manageable level. They can be worn while sleeping or at other times of the day when you may want to reduce noise levels. This can be especially helpful to workers in industrial and construction jobs where noise levels tend to be higher. The use of noise-cancelling headphones can be good at reducing noise pollution as well.

Turn down the volume when listening to music or the television.

Follow the community guidelines for noise levels for outdoor gatherings and parties. And pay particular attention to silent zones near schools and hospitals. Notify government agencies when someone is not following the rules and regulations of noise control.

Plant more trees! Studies have shown that they absorb noise and can reduce levels by 5 to 10 decibels in the areas around them.

Properly maintain and lubricate machinery to reduce noise vibrations and improve efficiency. By reducing the friction of movable parts, we can help reduce the noise.

Make a dedicated quiet space where you can go to get away from noise.

Spread the news

International Noise Awareness Day is a thing. Join people and organizations around the world to celebrate and raise awareness. Remember that noise pollution is not as obvious as other types of pollution, however, it is a very real danger. Spread awareness about the effects of noise pollution on humans and animals. Talk to neighbors and friends about ways to reduce the effects of excessive noise. By working together toward solutions, we can create a less noisy environment that will benefit everyone for years to come.

Pin it!

Featured photo courtesy Pixabay/27551

Author of Article

Barbara Bauer is a Georgia-based blogger obsessed with inspiring others in the pursuit of self-development. She enjoys exploring the outdoors, drinking way too much coffee, and speaking with a British accent whenever possible.

Arrow icon.View All Posts by Barb Bauer
share this post