Saturday, 17 July 2021

The relationship between noise and pollution...

Has anyone noticed how much more noisier the world has become? In my little backwater it seems younger people purchase motorbikes and take off something from the exhaust system. The noise is unbelievable! Some cars as well, they have modifications that increase the sound. I live sandwiched between two very busy roads. One is the local main street and the other is the A road that streaks through the valley. Sitting outside you cannot hear the birds any more. I believe the birds cannot hear themselves either. When the traffic noise dies down in the later evening but only during the summer, you might hear a song thrush or blackbird.

I purchased a piece of measuring equipment. Measuring the dangerous exhaust particles called PM 2.5. These are particles that can go deep into the lungs and also can get into the bloodstream. The WHO (World Health Organisation) states that anything over 12 on a regular basis– meaning 12 particles per cubic metre - is dangerous to health. On our local road it frequently goes over 30 and I have pictures of it showing 50! Particularly when we have high pressure systems. It is not so bad when it rains but can still hit the 20 mark at particular times of day. Such as the school run and going to work.

As was said before, it has implications for global warming, more cars, dirty exhausts. Another problem is that here we are right under the flightpath between Heathrow Airport (London) and the United States, New York mostly. The exhaust gases slowly percolate downwards exacerbating the problem. Yes, this is 2021! Kids have already died, especially in London but might well have also in other large cities from this pollution. PM 2.5 is deadly and cannot be reversed. It just accumulates. Has anyone noticed the incidences of Asthma? No? Here it is quite common, I wonder why? 

And of course the noise also has an effect on life. Sleep is disturbed. No longer is it silent at night, traffic goes on. Someone I already hate tries to fill his or her motorbike up at 6 in the morning. Just wondering if the just born baby next door will get used to it? 

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