EMA fights back in noise pollution battle

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In this May 31 file photo a group of women arrive at the Bacchanal Road fete, hosted by Caesar’s Army Ltd, on Sunday at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba. Photo by Roger Jacob

THE Environmental Management Authority (EMA) on Wednesday said they have adopted five initiatives to address noise pollution having received in excess of 118 complaints for the year.

In a media statement on Wednesday, the EMA said it responded to 61 per cent of the complaints received.

The initiatives to combat noise pollution included appealing a High Court ruling, amending the Noise Pollution Control Rules, issuing notice of violation to event managers, collaborating with the police and working with the promoters association.

The appeal is hoped to settle the argument on the power both the EMA and police have to shut down events.

The release said in March the EMA amended Rule 2 of the Noise Pollution Control Rules, (2001) to reduce the time to monitor noise levels from three hours to 30 minutes.

EMA said it issued a notice of violation to the event managers regarding a party at the Brian Lara Stadium in Tarouba on May 15 and began a partnership with police after complaints were made by the zoo earlier this month. The collaboration will see officers being trained to use noise metres and clarified the role and responsibilities police have in controlling noise pollution.

The final initiative was a meeting with the TT Promoters Association (TTPA) to determine noise mitigation strategies. This will include the use of noise monitoring stations at major events and educating members of the association on noise mitigation strategies and compliance with existing laws.

“The EMA has therefore taken affirmative action toward strengthening the legislative framework and engaging in dialogue with the police and other key stakeholders such as event promoters and bar owners and continues to initiate public awareness campaigns.”

The release added that the EMA maintains that an all-of-society approach is required “to fight the scourge of noise pollution.”

“The EMA is thus making an appeal in tandem with the police to fete promoters, event organisers, bar owners and to the general public to be responsible, civic-minded, and cognizant of the damaging effects of noise pollution.”

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