The Environment Agency Committee in Japan is working towards curbing noise pollution by setting up permissible levels of road noise. If these levels are not adhered to, then governors can impose traffic restrictions.
The committee, a branch of the Central Environment Council, has recommended that the noise level "threshold" at which such action can be triggered should be 10 decibels above the existing recommended standard for areas around the roads. The agency will now seek revisions to the existing ordinance set up by the Prime Minister's Office.
Under the noise pollution control law, governors have the power to demand measures for reducing noise. However, according to the committee, in the past 10 years only 16 such instances have been reported nationwide out of which only in two cases -- in Chiba and Tokyo -- counter-measures, such as reducing speed limits, have been implemented.
With this move, governors will be able to seek counter-measures when noise levels reach 65 decibels in the daytime and 55 decibels at night on single-lane roads, and 70 decibels in daytime and 65 decibels at night on two-lane roads in residential areas. On trunk roads, the threshold has been set at 75 decibels by day and 70 decibels at night.
We are a voice to you; you have been a support to us. Together we build journalism that is independent, credible and fearless. You can further help us by making a donation. This will mean a lot for our ability to bring you news, perspectives and analysis from the ground so that we can make change together.
Comments are moderated and will be published only after the site moderator’s approval. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name. Selected comments may also be used in the ‘Letters’ section of the Down To Earth print edition.