Noise Pollution In New York City

Submitted By Karly-Bornstein
Words: 813
Pages: 4

New York City is one of the busiest and largest cities in the United States, as well as, one the largest user of public transportation. From buses, rails, subways, and other modes of public transit allow New York City to be in constant motion; however, with such busy machine there will be a high volume of sound to follow. A large problem New York City faces, which is often overlooked, is noise pollution. It comes as a contradiction at first because New York City has a smaller percentage of cars on the road compared to other U.S. cities where 48% of New York City populous owns a car, and furthermore only 30% use those cars for transportation (Neitzel, R., Gershon 1395). With a substantial decrease in the number of cars on the road there should be less noise, but in reality the mass transit system of New York City is boisterous indeed. Therefore, the large amount of mass transit that traverses the city day and night allows the precipitate of noise pollution to come to fruition. The noise level that the citizens of the city are exposed to rise up above to 140 decibels at points and severely damage the hearing health of the average person. These noises levels are consistent across many forms of transportation which stretch from subways and buses, as well as, increasing in construction zones. The noise levels in New York City brought about the large amount of strident public transportation exceed the healthy noise levels which an average citizen experiences, and in conjunction, the populous of New York City cannot escape the noise levels without proper precautions because the source of the noise is a fundamental function of the city itself. First and foremost, the noise pollution comes with a relative negative stigma or a perceived notion of bearing not much concern for the general populous. This occurs because noise pollution in most urban cities or suburban towns derives from a small population living near busy intersections, train tracks, or the highway; however, in New York City the noise levels are a much larger concern for a much larger part of the populous. For instance, if only 30% of the citizens use a car to drive that would then mean that 70% of them use a form of public transportation. Thus a large majority of people are exposed to unhealthy levels of sound because they are taking the subway, buses, or the rail in order to commute. The next stigma that follows noise pollution is that despite the threat of the pollution, noise pollution is often brushed aside because it is popularly believed that the effects of noise pollution are minor and the noise levels are just an annoyance and not a health concern. To put the level of noise into perspective: the noise traffic creates exists in a dynamic range of 80 decibels which can peak above 140 decibels, and the traffic ranges from frequencies of sound from 6.3 Hz to 20 kHz (Ballesteros, M. J., Ballesteros, J. A., Fernández, M. D., Quintana, S., & González, I. 712). In regards to the level of the sound, decibel