Gov’t to track excessive noise making – Environment Minister
Dr Joe Oteng-Adjei, Minister for Environment, Science and Technology Innovation (MESTI), has expressed government’s willingness to put in place measures to monitor and get rid of excessive noise intrusion in the country.
To this end, he said, MESTI in partnership with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had started a process to convert the guidelines into standards to ensure effective monitoring of noise.
He said it was important for the country to recognise the noise sources in the environment and take precaution to protect people from its harmful effects.
Dr Oteng-Adjei said this in a speech read on his behalf by Mr Rudolph Kuuzegh, Director of Finance and Administration, MESTI, at the launch of the eighth National Noise Awareness Day in Accra on Wednesday.
The event, which was on the theme: “Community Noise Reduction: A Responsibility for All”, was aimed to create an enlightened public opinion and awareness regarding noise pollution and further resolve to rid the community of excessive noise and improve the environment.
The EPA Act 490 (of 1994) mandates the Agency to prescribe standards and guidelines relating to the pollution of water, air, land and noise in the country.
The Minister noted that EPA’s permissible ambient noise levels in residential areas during the day was 55 decibels (dB) and 48 dB at night while the areas housing educational and health facilities were 55dB during the day and 50dB at night.
He said noise level for areas with commercial or light industrial activities was 60dB during the day and 55dB during the night.
He emphasized that government’s effort to support relevant institutions and stakeholders to find lasting solutions to noise pollution was a key to fight the menace.
He commended EPA and other stakeholders for their immense contribution in creating awareness about the effects of the noise and regulating noise in the environment.
He urged the Metropolitan Municipal and District Assembles (MMDAs), law enforcement agencies and the EPA to intensify enforcement procedures to guide and regulate entertainment and religious activities as well as block manufacturers and lorry stations.
Mr Daniel .S. Amlalo, Executive Director of EPA, said noise pollution over the years had become a common occurrence in the country, adding the control and enforcement of appropriate noise levels at various places such as churches, social events and the industries were major environmental concerns.
As part of efforts to address the menace, he said, the EPA often undertook activities aimed at sensitizing and raising awareness of the public on the health and environmental effects of noise.
“These activities will continue till attitudes towards noise pollution are changed. It is important to mention that a number of people have been prosecuted by the Agency for flouting the prescribed noise levels,” he said.
He called on the media to help the Agency to educate the public on their rights and responsibilities in curbing the menace.
I must confess this article is very interesting however, I would like to know if there are other regulations on noise levels in commercial areas Also, I would like to know if there are limitations in hours. In effect to what time can a company produce the 60dcb indicated above.