The FAA is seeking comment on how it collects information in its noise studies. The comment period closes TODAY, January 29, 2018. For decades, the FAA has used an arbitrarily high noise standard that averages noise over long periods of time in order to claim that communities are not subject to “significant” airport noise. Please go to this link and make your comment.
CRCA has made the following comment:
The FAA’s Day-Night Average Sound Level (DNL) metric for determining “significant” aviation noise exposure reflects mean noise levels over a long period of time and is inadequate to capture the disruption caused by particularly noisy aircraft or periods of frequent air traffic. The FAA should take into account other variables, including Single Event Noise Exposure Level (SENEL), the concentration of extended noise, the frequency of flights, air traffic from 10PM to 7AM, and the impacts of low-frequency noise. The use of metrics other than DNL to regulate noise does not adversely impact the safety nor throughput of the National Airspace System. Airports such as John Wayne – Orange County (SNA) have used these metrics for decades while still operating as efficient and economically robust airports.
Additionally, the FAA’s current standard for “significant impact” should be lowered from 65 to 55 DNL. The 65 DNL standard does not align with current health research or the lived experience of families impacted by aviation noise. 65 DNL was arbitrarily selected based on a flawed 1978 study (see Fidell, Sanford. “The Schultz curve 25 years later: A research perspective.” The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 2003.)
You may also use the following language from the Congressional Quiet Skies Caucus:
FAA’s current metric for quantifying aviation noise exposure, Day-Night Average Sound Level (DNL), reflects mean noise levels and does not adequately capture the complete effects of noise on affected residents. FAA should take into account other variables, including the concentration of extended noise, the frequency of flights, air traffic from 10PM to 7AM and impacts of low-frequency noise. In addition, FAA should lower the current threshold from 65 to 55 DNL to reflect the fact that this standard, first established in the 1970’s, is arbitrary and does not align with current health research and the lived experience of families in our congressional districts.