For Clément Dargent, a resident of the 10th arrondissement of Paris, noise pollution is a daily aggression.

With an uninterrupted flow of scooters, trucks and cars, the boulevard on which he lives is undoubtedly one of the noisiest in Paris.

He decided to mobilize by joining Ras le Scoot, an association which campaigns for the limitation of scooters.

"There are solutions that exist," he says, hoping that the authorities will do more to reduce noise in the French capital. 

A long-neglected public health problem

After air pollution, noise pollution is the second biggest environmental factor contributing to health problems, according to the World Health Organization.

Excess noise can cause cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, stress and depression.

While noise pollution affects nearly 20% of Europeans, it is in Paris that we find the most residents exposed to dangerous noise levels: more than 5.5 million, compared to 2.6 million in London and 1. 7 million in Rome.

However, the French capital has declared an open war on noise. 

Bruitparif: measuring the noise of Paris 

"Our role is to measure the noise in order to be able to take stock of the situation and begin to act", affirms Olivier Blond.

The president of the Bruitparif association explains the operation of the high-tech noise radars they have just developed, the "jellyfish", which make it possible to geolocate the source of the noise.

A world first.

The next step ?

Find solutions, such as fines for detected cars that exceed noise limits.

“We are waiting for more than the green light from the State”, concludes Olivier Blond. 

The impact of noise pollution on biodiversity

Humans are not the only ones to suffer from excessive noise: many animals, especially birds, are also victims.

While the noises we hear – like traffic – are familiar to us, they are unfamiliar to animals and frighten them.

“This poses problems for the good health of populations and species,” says Olivier Pichard, head of biodiversity studies at Cerema.

To remedy this, he calls for more measures to be put in place.

Adding vegetation to urban areas, for example, is an effective way to reduce noise pollution and promote biodiversity.

Noise-reducing road surfacing, an innovation to combat noise pollution  

In extremely noisy cities, increasing green spaces would not be enough to combat noise pollution and other solutions are essential.

Colas is a company that has been developing noise-reducing road surfaces for more than 30 years.

Cédric Leroux explains that by making the road surface more porous, the noise produced by the friction of car tires on the road is absorbed.

The municipality of Paris has chosen Colas' innovative surfacing to install it on certain roads in the capital, with the aim of reducing the noise level by 3 decibels.

A good start, but still far from enough to greatly reduce the noise of the city.

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