Right to Quiet Society Noiseletter
Winter 2008 - page 3

Noise may cause high blood pressure

Editor: Song Shutao

BEJINGStudy found people who live near airports may have an elevated risk of high blood pressure due to noise pollution, and scientists suggested that they find a new home, media reported Monday quoting the journal Epidemiology. Dr. Mats Rosenlund of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, and associates found that among more than 2,000 men followed for a decade, those who lived in areas with the greatest noise from a nearby airport had a higher risk of developing high blood pressure.

It's possible that the constant noise of planes buzzing overhead is a source of chronic stress for some of these individuals, which in turn may raise their blood pressure, explained Rosenlund. "It is thought that aircraft noise causes stress problems when it interferes with people's ability to think, relax or sleep, for example," said Rosenlund.

The study involved 2,027 men from four municipalities surrounding the Stockholm Arlanda airport who were free of high blood pressure at the study's outset. Their aircraft-noise exposure was estimated using government air traffic data, and the researchers tracked any new diagnoses of high blood pressure over the next 10 years. In general, the 20 percent of men exposed to the highest average levels of aircraft noise were 19 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure than their counterparts with lower‑level noise exposure, the researchers report.

A large European study involving multiple airports is underway, he noted, and it may provide a more definitive answer. For now, Rosenlund said he would hesitate to recommend that people living near airports find a new home. On the other hand, he pointed out, people who are "constantly annoyed" by aircraft noise might want to consider a neighbourhood more conducive to their overall happiness.

—xinhuanet news service


German city announces lawsuit

The City of Offenbach will sue over the land-use plan that allows the expansion of the Frankfurt airport. The immense burden of aircraft noise on the city was “simply ignored,” the authorised city councillor, Paul-Gerhard Weiss, stated as being the reason. The approach to the planned third runway would lead right over Offenbach. That would mean roughly 1,000 daily overflights over the city. Because of that, the City of Offenbach will launch a


lawsuit in the administrative court in Kassel.

According to its own statement, the City of Offenbach is the first municipality of the region surrounding the airport that goes to court prior to the resolution of the plan for the expansion to be finalised by the end of 2007.

Darmstaedter Echo, dpa

Vehicle safety-systems ad

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“Quiet” Sign

“Lounge: The Seawest Lounge offers a peaceful environment that is free of excessive noise. Please help us maintain this environment by using headphones for all entertainment devices, reducing loud conversations and the use of cellphones. Thanks for your cooperation.”
Our member J. Martyn discovered that sign and explored the quiet lounge. He e-mailed his happiness with the Lounge to BC Ferries. (Note: The lounge is a $ 10 charge). BC Ferries has rewarded him with a complimentary pass ($10 value) to their Seawest Lounge for providing his comments. The lounge is presently found on two vessels: The Spirit of Vancouver and the Spirit of British Columbia. The new vessels ordered from Germany will have the lounge as well. They are the Coastal Renaissance, the Coastal Inspiration and the Coastal Celebration.

Entire contents © 2006 Right to Quiet Society. Cartoon © 1996 Right to Quiet Society
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