The Noise Control Act of 1972, promoted by the U.S. Congress, provided a statutory mandate for a national policy on noise. The purpose of this policy was “to promote an environment for all Americans free from noise that jeopardizes their public health and welfare”. The Noise Control Act of 1972 divided the responsibilities for noise permitted in the environment between Federal, State and Local governments. The Federal government was given the task for controlling noise source emissions while the states and political subdivisions retained primary responsibility to control the use of noise sources and noise levels permitted in the environment. To accomplish this, the Environmental Protection Agency produced two documents which form the basis for modern-day assessment, evaluation and control of environmental noise. These documents were respectfully named “Public Health and Welfare Criteria for Noise (1973)” and “Information on Levels of Environmental Noise Requisite to Protect Public Health and Welfare with an Adequate Margin of Safety (1974)”. The resulting documents were based upon years of research and cumulative data provided by noise consultants, research scientists and governmental agencies. The information provided in this literature provided a basis for noise regulations adopted by HUD, FHWA, FAA and FICON. Most local governmental agencies develop noise ordinances referencing information provided in these documents.  Ballentine Walker Smith Inc. has extensive experience in conducting environmental impact surveys (EIS) and evaluating community noise. BWS conducts hundreds of noise surveys and provides critical expert opinions and testimony where disputes arise.

I-75 Noise Monitoring, Atlanta

Featured Project

Project Profile: GE Turbines Test Stand 8 This custom test stand was designed to house the GE 9H turbine. At 400 tons and producing 450 MW of raw power, this turbine is the world’s largest and is capable of energizing 600,000 homes. Noise abatement measures included the internally insulated inlet and exhaust ducts and a separate, detached, double wall construction control building. The vent tower also contains a sound attenuation system that baffles the sound from leaving the test facility. The facility was tested after it went online and found to be within 2 dBA of levels predicted during design. GE engineers reported that the use of a microphone was required in order to hear the turbine noise in the remarkably quiet control room during testing. The project won an engineering excellence award in 1999 and was featured in the Atlanta Business Chronicle. (ABC Article.pdf)

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