The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has reviewed the NSW Industrial Noise Policy and is now inviting members from the community, industry and government to provide feedback on its draft Industrial Noise Guideline.
Director Reform and Compliance David Fowler said the EPA’s review is designed to improve and modernise the 15-year-old policy in a number of areas, for example by clarifying planning and assessment processes and updating requirements to better reflect noise impacts in certain circumstances.
“The role of the Industrial Noise Policy is to provide a framework for consistent assessment and management of the impact of noise on the community from industrial noise sources regulated by the EPA,” said Mr Fowler.
“It is used by proponents and planning and environmental authorities in the approval process for industrial developments.
“The new draft Industrial Noise Guideline clarifies and modernises the existing policy without significantly altering its main principles and processes.”
The draft guideline has been developed in consultation with NSW Health and the Department of Environment and Planning, taking into account the latest scientific research and input by users of the policy.
Some of the key changes in the draft document include:
- Clarification of the policy’s purpose, its links with the planning system and the role of noise levels in developing site specific requirements.
- Incorporation of sleep disturbance assessment into the guideline.
- Updates to the methods for identifying and assessing tonal, low frequency and short duration noise to reflect current standards and practices.
- Introduction of a precinct concept to better manage noise and impacts from multiple premises at a single site without stifling future development.
- Raising the minimum daytime background noise level to reflect the less sensitive nature of the daytime period and activities undertaken during this period.