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      Soundscape and subjective factors affecting residents’ evaluation of aircraft noise in the communities under flight routes


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          Aircraft noise is one of the most significant sources of environmental pollution in large cities. During the COVID-19 pandemic, strict lockdown in community might increase residents’ discomfort with the noise, which could disrupt public activities and reduce subjective well-being. Most of the existing studies considered aircraft noise as a single sound source, which have ignored the influence of other sounds in the community. This paper applied field survey to identify the soundscape and non-acoustic factors related to aircraft noise evaluation.


          Paper questionnaires were delivered to select residents of three sample residential areas near Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport to investigate residents’ general health, evaluation of aircraft noise, community activities, and attitudinal factors. The relationship between respondent’s noise evaluations and subjective factors were investigated through statistical analyses controlling for measured aircraft noise levels and the existence of soundscape facilities.


          The results indicated that the negative effects of aircraft noise were enhanced during the lock down, especially for frequent space users and those residents in poor health status. Under conditions of similar levels of aircraft noise exposure, communities with more birdsong and fountain sounds had lower proportion of highly annoyed respondents and higher level of soundscape ratings. This paper further indicated that personal factors including fear of air travel, noise sensitivity, and the frequency of outdoor activity had increased the level of annoyance to aircraft noise, while higher degree of annoyance to aircraft noise was associated with poor health status.


          The findings implied the moderating effects of subjective factors and the restorative effects of natural sounds, which could inform aircraft noise control and community consultation strategies by protecting vulnerable populations and creating community soundscape facilities. Future research might conduct a pre- and post-experiment to estimate the potential causal impact of the soundscape intervention.

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          Most cited references15

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          Exposure-response relationships for transportation noise.

          This article presents synthesis curves for the relationship between DNL and percentage highly annoyed for three transportation noise sources. The results are based on all 21 datasets examined by Schultz [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 64, 377-405 (1978)] and Fidell et al. [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 89, 221-233 (1991)] for which acceptable DNL and percentage highly annoyed measure could be derived, augmented with 34 datasets. Separate, nonidentical curves were found for aircraft, road traffic, and railway noise. A difference between sources was found using data for all studies combined and for only those studies in which respondents evaluated two sources. The latter outcome strengthens the conclusion that the differences between sources cannot be explained by differences in study methodology.
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            Exposure-response relationship of the association between aircraft noise and the risk of hypertension.

            Noise is a stressor that affects the autonomic nervous system and the endocrine system. Under conditions of chronic noise stress the cardiovascular system may adversely be affected. Epidemiological noise studies regarding the relationship between aircraft noise and cardiovascular effects have been carried out on adults and on children focussing on mean blood pressure, hypertension and ischemic heart diseases as cardiovascular endpoints. While there is evidence that road traffic noise increases the risk of ischemic heart disease, including myocardial infarction, there is less such evidence for such an association with aircraft noise. This is partly due to the fact that large scale clinical studies are missing. There is sufficient qualitative evidence, however, that aircraft noise increases the risk of hypertension in adults. Regarding aircraft noise and children's blood pressure the results are still inconsistent. The available literature was evaluated for the WHO working group on "Aircraft Noise and Health" based on the experts' comprehensive knowledge in this field. With respect to the needs of a quantitative risk assessment for burden of disease calculations an attempt was made to derive an exposure-response relationship based on a meta-analysis. This association must be viewed as preliminary due to limitations which are concerned with the pooling of studies due to methodological differences in the assessment of exposure and outcome between studies. More studies are needed to establish better estimates of the risk.
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              Individual differences in reactions to noise: A longitudinal study in a college dormitory.


                Author and article information

                Front Psychol
                Front Psychol
                Front. Psychol.
                Frontiers in Psychology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                03 July 2023
                : 14
                : 1197820
                [1] 1School of Architecture and Urban Planning, Shenzhen University , Shenzhen, China
                [2] 2Shenzhen Key Laboratory of Architecture for Health and Well-being (in preparation) , Shenzhen, China
                [3] 3Shenzhen Key Laboratory of Built Environment Optimization Design , Shenzhen, China
                Author notes

                Edited by: Yue Wu, Harbin Institute of Technology, China

                Reviewed by: Dongxu Zhang, Northeastern University, China; Qi Meng, Harbin Institute of Technology, China; Stephen Law, University College London, United Kingdom

                *Correspondence: Tongtong Zhang, zhangtt@ 123456szu.edu.cn
                Copyright © 2023 Qu, Li, Zhang and Huang.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                : 31 March 2023
                : 19 June 2023
                Page count
                Figures: 3, Tables: 4, Equations: 0, References: 15, Pages: 7, Words: 4251
                Funded by: National Natural Science Foundation of China, doi 10.13039/501100001809;
                Funded by: Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province, doi 10.13039/501100003453;
                Funded by: Shenzhen Science and Technology Innovation Program, doi 10.13039/501100017610;
                The study was funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Project No. 52208023) and the Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province (Project No. 2021A1515010556) and supported by the Shenzhen Science and Technology Program (Project No. ZDSYS20210623101534001).
                Original Research
                Custom metadata
                Environmental Psychology

                Clinical Psychology & Psychiatry
                aircraft noise,soundscape,health,moderating effect,non-acoustic factors


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