Links between noise and air pollution and socioeconomic status
Air pollution and noise pollution have a negative impact on all of society — but some groups are more affected than others. Lower socioeconomic status is generally associated with poorer health, and both air and noise pollution contribute to a wide range of other factors influencing human health. But do these health inequalities arise because of increased exposure to pollution, increased sensitivity to exposure, increased vulnerabilities, or some combination? This In-depth Report presents evidence on whether people in deprived areas are more affected by air and noise pollution — and suffer greater consequences — than wealthier populations.
The contents and views included in this News Alert are based on independent, peer-reviewed research and do not necessarily reflect the position of the European Commission.
|Related articles from Science for Environment Policy|
If you are interested in reading more about research into noise and air pollution, here is a selection of articles from the Science for Environment Policy weekly News Alert available to download:
Emissions from 2008–2015 VW diesel vehicles fitted with ‘defeat devices’ linked to 59 premature deaths (January 2016)
In September 2015, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) alleged that Volkswagen (VW) violated the US Clean Air Act by fitting ‘defeat devices’ in their light-duty diesel vehicles to falsify the results of emissions tests. According to a study assessing the potential impact of this decision, an extra 59 early deaths in the US are likely to be caused by exposure to PM2.5 and ozone.
Poor air quality associated with increased risk of preterm birth (February 2016)
Research using the Environmental Quality Index (EQI) linked increased risk of preterm birth with poor air quality, but not with overall low environmental quality. The study is one of the first to explore the relationship between preterm birth and environmental quality across a range of different environmental domains (including water, air, land, built environment and sociodemographic aspects).
Subway stations with platform sliding doors and good ventilation reduce passengers’ exposure to PM2.5 (March 2016)
Underground trains are among the most widely used public transport systems in cities worldwide. A study investigating the chemical composition and source of particles in Barcelona subway stations found that a new station design, with sliding doors that separate the platform from the tunnel and good ventilation, reduced the concentration of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) by over 50% compared with older station designs
Traffic noise pollution mapped with new mobile phone app (November 2014)
A new mobile phone application which can help monitor traffic - noise exposure is presented in a recent study. The app, ‘2Loud?’, can measure indoor night - time noise exposure and, given large - scale community participation, could provide valuable data to aid urban planning, the researchers say. In an Australian pilot study, nearly half of participants who used the app found that they were exposed to potentially unhealthy levels of night-time noise.
You may also be interested in a related Thematic Issue:
Noise impacts on health (January 2015)To view the Science for Environment Policy website, please visit http://ec.europa.eu/science-
Exposure to excessive noise is recognised as a major environmental health concern. This Thematic Issue examines the impact of noise on human health and outlines how policy initiatives may limit health effects from noise annoyance - and improve wellbeing.