Noise pollution – where did the tranquillity go and how can we regain it?

What is noise pollution?
Noise pollution, also commonly known as sound pollution and/or environmental noise is the spread of harmful levels of noise affecting both human and animal life. Noise pollution, according to National Geographic, affects millions of people globally. Noise pollution is typically generated from industrial activity, construction, freeways, and aeroplane traffic. There are, however, many other sources of noise that have dangerous decibels (dB: the measure of sound intensity) levels such as lawnmowers, jackhammers, train stations, bars/cafés and nightlife. All of which are mainstream noise pollutants to billions around the globe.

The consequences of capitalism and a new approach forward.

What is capitalism?
Capitalism is the political and economic system that is controlled by private ownership – dictating shipping, manufacturing and distribution – to gain profits and divorce control from the state. The main principles of capitalism include capital accumulation, private control of operations, competition, voluntary exchange, wage labour and property rights recognition. The race for larger distribution of goods has led companies to flatten the global environment by extracting natural resources at completely unsustainable rates. Over the past decade it has become clear to leading scientists, journalists and economists, that in order to halt climate change, we must change our relationship to work, capital and ownership.

The ecological, societal and economic ramifications of climate change.

The USGS (United States Geological Survey) explains that climate change is the long-term effects on the climate – from precipitation levels to wind patterns and temperature. The UN (United Nations) mentions that climate change can also be caused by environmental activity – disassociated with humans – and in fact, there is evidence to suggest nature, too, plays a role in altering the climate. Conversely, global warming is one element of climate change as it only represents the average increase in surface temperatures.

What is bilge dumping and why has it gone unnoticed?

What is bilge dumping?
Bilge dumping is an illegal practice where cargo vessels and tankers release bilge water into the ocean. This ‘bilge water’ is present in most modern vessels fueled by heavy oil. These toxic liquids are thick, oily sludge – extremely hazardous to marine life. Bilge tanks are located in “the lowest compartments of the ship” where the waste is transferred. In order to operate the ship, bilge water has to be produced and directed into the tank. On a sanitary and ecologically-sensitive vessel, the bilge tank is emptied and filtered offshore regularly. Large vessels providing goods via global shipping routes can go for weeks, however, with nowhere to adequately dispose of the waste.