For many people, noise is the most severely perceived environmental impact (UBA 2007, Münzel 2013). Traffic is the main source of noise pollution in Germany.

Since the ear with its downstream processing levels in the brain is always active, even during sleep, stimuli are first absorbed unfiltered.

WHO has recently updated its Noise guidelines for Europe (10.10.2018). Compared to previous WHO guidelines on noise, this version contains five important innovations:

  • stronger evidence of cardiovascular and metabolic effects of environmental noise,
  • inclusion of new noise sources, namely wind turbine noise and recreational noise, in addition to traffic noise (air, rail and road),
  • use a standardised approach to the evaluation of evidence,
  • a systematic review of the evidence defining the link between noise exposure and the risk of adverse health effects and
  • the use of long-term average noise indicators to better predict adverse health effects.