The Environmental Management Authority (EMA) in a statement reminded event promoters they need a Noise Variation Permit if using amplified sound equipment. Under the Noise Pollution Control Rules (NPCR), this permit issued by the EMA sets out the sound levels that an event promoter is allowed to emit.
It also lists measures the promoter must take to minimise disturbance to nearby sensitive receptors such as homes, schools, hospitals, places of religious worship and homes for the elderly.
To protect the health and wellbeing of sensitive receptors, the NPCR prescribes standards in three areas: General, Environmentally Sensitive, and Industrial areas.
In general areas such as Woodbrook, St Clair, Port-of-Spain and environs, the night-time (8 pm - 8 am) level is 65 decibels. With a Noise Variation Permit, an event promoter is allowed to exceed the prescribed level. However even permit holders must adhere to certain standards, the statement added.
“The issue of noise pollution and the negative effects it has on human and animal health featured prominently in public consultations held by the Authority in 2017 during the revision of the National Environmental Policy (NEP).
“This is supported by the significant number of noise complaints received by the EMA via its Hotline and Social Media accounts.”
While Carnival is part of the country’s tradition and culture and provides livelihoods to many citizens, this must be balanced with the right of all to enjoy property, peace, and wellbeing.
“The EMA congratulates promoters of Carnival events who adhere to the NPCR and cause minimal disruption to nearby residents.
“Noise pollution is not a prerequisite for hosting a successful event.”