Hello! My name is Timothy Guillot. Today, I am going to tell you about the issue of noise pollution, and how it may be harming your daily experience. My goal is to increase your awareness of this problem and to suggest how you can reduce its effects on your life. So what exactly is noise pollution, you might ask? Isn’t pollution usually caused by chemicals or toxins in the environment? Well, to explain what it is, it might be best for me to show you…
Inside: In a bedroom
Do you find it harder to hear me out here? (pause while walking a few paces) That is because of the sound of traffic on the interstate. Whether it is from traffic, trains, aircraft, construction working, or even outdoor music concerts, sound is constantly bombarding our ears in modern society. This kind of excessive, unwanted, disturbing background noise is what we call noise pollution. We are exposed to it in our homes, at work, in cities, and even in rural areas.
Inside: Back by the Windows by the Table
Phew. That is much better. As I was saying, most areas in modern society have loud background noise from things like transportation or construction. The reason it is a kind of pollution is because of its effects on human health and animal health. In humans, being exposed to constant noise can cause an increase in blood pressure, or hypertension. If sound levels are too loud, over time noise can cause hearing loss. One study found that people who are live in heavily noise-polluted environments like cities may have a higher chance of getting diabetes. Additionally, noise pollution disturbs sleep, causing many people to resort to buying sleeping pills to get a good night’s rest. So clearly, it is not healthy for humans to live with such noise.
Inside: Living Room, Facing Curtains
Further inside this house, it is already much less noisy. One way to make a room more quiet is to put sound-absorbing materials on the walls, like foam panels. If you cannot afford those, you can try using earplugs, earmuffs, or even headphones to block noise from your ears. In the public sphere, engineers are finding ways to reduce traffic noise flowing into residential areas. For example, many interstates now have sound barriers to block noise from bordering neighborhoods. Sound barriers can work well in combination with the other noise-reducing methods I mentioned.
But what about other creatures who do not have human methods of reducing noise? Like humans, animals are also in danger of losing hearing, but some problems are more unique to animals. Noise can interrupt animal mating calls and other forms of animal communication, making life much more confusing and distressing for animals.Some scientific evidence points to the possibility that noise pollution shortens animal life spans by causing premature aging. If that turns out to be true for animals, it could also be true for humans.
Through this presentation, I have given an overview of how noise causes health problems in society and in the natural environment, and that it is hence a form of pollution. I explained several common sources of noise pollution and how you can combat them by using earplugs or sound panels. I summarized research showing the adverse effects of noise pollution on human and animal health. By supporting public measures to reduce noise, you can help protect your fellow human beings and fellow creatures on earth. Thank you.