Right to Quiet Society News

Peter Donnelly served on the International Steering Committee for International Noise Awareness (INA) Day, April 21, 1999, to help co-ordinate the global campaign organized by the Noise Centre of the New York League for the Hard of Hearing.

The next INA Day will be held on Wednesday, April 12, 2000. If you have ideas for activities and want to help organize them, please contact us.

On INA Day in Vancouver, several members were out on downtown streets and handed out over 1,000 leaflets. Just as the leaflets ran out it started to rain -- an effective dampening of urban noise!

Once again we had an info-table at the David Suzuki Foundation's Earth Day celebration on April 24 in the central branch of the Vancouver Public Library. To our pleasant surprise, the acoustic situation was better than last year. Only some speeches inside the library hall were still over- amplified. Dr. Suzuki's speech, for instance, registered peaks of around 90 dB.

On the initiative of RTQ member Jhaleh Zaraweh, Vice-President Hans Schmid was invited to speak briefly before a discussion at the Philosophy Cafe in North Vancouver on June 23. Miss Zaraweh introduced the topic: "Empty vessels make the most noise -- Is this true of our generation where louder is better?" During the lively debate some very good ideas were expressed. This was a good exercise to generate awareness.

"To make the world a quieter, healthier place" was the topic of an address by Hans to the West Vancouver Rotary Club on August 18. Hans spoke of the many adverse effects of noise on our health, and means to abate or prevent noise. There was a question period, and a selection of our info-material was displayed.

The Quiet-List, an Internet forum generously operated and paid for by RTQ member David Staudacher, is very popular. It provides an opportunity for participants all around the world to share information and ideas. Please visit our website <www.quiet.org> for more information.

Y2K is coming! There will probably be lots of noisy events all over the world. With this in mind, Hans posted our organization on the roster of International Earth Day 2000 in Seattle and suggested that people observe a minute of silence frequently throughout the year. For more information contact:

Mr. Mark Dubois, International Coordinator
Earth Day 2000
91 Marion
Seattle 98104
Phone: (206) 264 0114 x203
Fax: (204) 682 1184
E-mail: mdubois@earthday.net
Web site

Constructive Suggestions

A member of Quiet-L suggests that governments designate quiet areas to be protected. These areas could be called "Sites of Special Sound Environment" (SSSE). This is a parallel with the protection of areas of unpolluted air by the U.S. government, which designates them as "pristine."

Another suggestion, from the editor of this newsletter, is to compile a guide of quiet places in each city. Paris (France) has had a Guide du Silence for years. It includes quiet hotels and restaurants, as well as quiet outdoor places.

Quieter Appliances on the Market

Miele claims that one of its models is so quiet you can talk on the phone while vacuuming. General Electric says its new dishwasher is virtually silent. Revlon has a new quiet hair dryer on the market.

Right to Quiet, Fall 1999

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