by Arline L. Bronzaft, Ph.D., Board of Directors, GrowNYC, and Co-founder, The Quiet Coalition
That Canada’s large urban cities, e. g. Toronto, Vancouver, are noisy comes as no surprise to dwellers in urban centers around the world. The Editorial Board of The Globe and Mail does not believe there are coherent policies at the federal, provincial, and local government levels across Canada to appropriately address noise pollution. This is the same view held by the many people in the U.S. who have advocated for less noise pollution these past forty years. Readers of The Quiet Coalition blogs have read over and over again that greater effort is required at all levels of government in the U.S. to lessen noise pollution which has been clearly associated with adverse mental and physical health effects.
The noise sources identified in a Toronto Public Health report, e. g. outside auto traffic, airplanes and helicopters, construction sites, and loud sounds from bars and concert venues, are similar to the noise sources in the U.S. that people call in to a 311 number. The Globe and Mail Editorial Board also states that the ways to reduce noise are there but as I often have stated, the way must be accompanied by the “will.”
It was sad to read the Editorial Board’s statement that “[m]illions of Canadians have in effect been told that if they don’t like the constant din, that’s just their opinion, or a matter of taste.” But that statement was followed by a stronger one: “No, it’s a health issue. And it’s time governments took it seriously.”
I say: “Thank you Globe and Mail Editorial Board!”