by Daniel Fink, MD, Chair, The Quiet Coalition
Noise is a health hazard and a public health hazard, causing auditory disorders (hearing loss, tinnitus, and hyperacusis) and non-auditory health problems, including hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and death.
This report by Jim Robbins in the New York Times discusses the hazards of noise for marine life. Noise hurts marine mammals, fish, and even plankton.
An evolutionary biology perspective is helpful in understanding why noise is a problem. Loud noise is rare in nature. All creatures on land or in the sea evolved in quiet. That is the natural state, for plants, animals, and humans.
It looks like all living things need quiet to thrive.