Some useful links that will educate you on noise related issues.
For example, you know night time noise must not exceed 55dB. But how much is that? Here are a few ways to estimate. For an introduction to noise estimates, »click here.
»A quick, children level primer.
»A list of most sources of noise
»A discussion on noise as a serious health hazard.
»Firecrackers and other noise menaces
Finally, here's a thumbrule:"If you have to shout in order to be heard three feet away, then the noise is probably too loud and could be damaging to your hearing."
One way to decide whether noise is below permissible, legal level or not is to measure it! For those of you who are aggrieved and establishments that want to know the noise they generate, »here's a low cost meter. When we last checked it was US$328. It is portable, has a digital read out and can settle most arguments in a sensible way.
Insensitivity to noise is one of the unfortunate aspects of life in India. Urbanisation, increasing incomes and commercial interests are all coming together, polluting the air with noise as though it were a right. Yet laws exist that define permissible levels of noise. Most of the time, the polluter is not aware that he/she is breaking the law. If you are oppressed by a noisy situation, it is your duty to bring the law to the notice of the offender. Most of the time the problem should go away. Occasionally, you may have to approach the police. Don't be surprised if you have to educate them about the law as well! Resorting to litigation should be your last resort. In all cases --direct approach, police complaint or litigation-- you need to know your law. It is called 'The Noise Pollution [Regulation and Control] Rules,2000' and can be read at this link. Do read it -- it is not opaque legalese. The Rules were amended a little later in 2002.
It is interesting to note that in a move that eases those stringent norms the Act was amended later in Oct,2002. The amendment gave permission to State Govts. to extend the use of loud speakers in the open between '10 pm and 12 pm only', for 'religious and cultural' purpose only for a maximum of 'not more than fifteen days during a calender year'.»You can view the amendment here.
Here's a beautiful site with many ideas on living with least impact on nature. Covers many issues. This site is maintained by Greg Seaman who practices what he preaches. The site is a visual treat too. It was runner-up in the Stockholm Challenge Award Contest in 2001.»Click here to visit the site
Here's a page that lists a number of links to judgements on Coastal Regulation Zone of India. Would be heavy reading for many of us but could be a great facility for lawyers and para-lawyers.»Click here to visit the site
Here's the link to a page in the Central Ministry of Environment and Forests which relates to the Tamil Nadu Stae Coastal Zone Management Authority. An article on this by Aarthi Sridhar can be found in the 'Reports' section of this site. »Click here to visit this page And what is the National Coastal Zone Authority? »Click here to find out