French Environment and Energy Management Agency
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ADEME in action
The current situation
In France, several million people suffer from noise pollution. ADEME has taken up the mission to fight against this nuisance which could come from the following sources : road, rail, commercial/ industrial activities and residential areas.
When asked, the majority of French citizens specify noise pollution as their biggest everyday concern. Most noise is generated by road, rail and air transport, with road transport being the worst culprit. Some 350,000 residences in France – located close to roads and train tracks – are exposed to worrying levels of noise, and noise produced by commercial, industrial and recreational activities, in addition to what is generally referred to as “domestic” noise, can be extremely frustrating for countless citizens.
Excess noise can cause a partial or even complete loss of hearing. A person submitted to a noise level of between 85 and 90 decibels for eight hours per day over several years could experience irreparable damage to their inner ear. Contrary to popular belief, however, noise has a harmful effect on more than just the auditory system. By interrupting conversations and communications, disturbing sleep, and boosting individual stress levels, it can damage other bodily systems (including sight and cardiovascular and gastrointestinal functions), cause sickness and nausea, and lead to psychological disorders.
ADEME in action
To fight effectively against noise pollution, ADEME supports research and development in pursuit of three objectives :
The agency promotes research and development into the reduction of noise emissions by vehicle engines (cars, lorries, trains and so on). It is also taking action on traffic in terms of various road and rail transport methods (the development of multimodal goods transport, for example, takes noise into consideration).
The agency supports the design of special equipment like anti-noise screens, the implementation of town planning and mobility programmes, and the construction of urban developments that aim to reduce excessive noise pollution and conserve quiet areas.
The agency actively promotes research and development into acoustic insulation for buildings (double-glazed air inlets, wall linings and the like) and keeps professionals and the general public informed regarding insulation techniques and their cost.
French Environment and Energy Management Agency Source http://www.ademe.fr