Airport Noise

The Oshawa Municipal Airport says they take airport and aircraft noise seriously. Their complaints page describes what residents need to do to register a formal complaint.

Airport Noise Affects Us All

Runway 12-30 is under review for expansion from 4,000 to 5,000 feet, despite being so close to schools and residential housing. Residents at the south-east end of runway 12-30 are especially vulnerable to noise and safety issues, but neighbourhoods all over Oshawa and beyond will be affected.

The following is from
Health Canada: Aircraft Noise in the Vicinity of Airports

The Issue
Jet aircraft are one of the most disturbing sources of noise in our environment. People who live in communities near airports have become increasingly concerned about potential health effects from aircraft noise.

Scientists have raised concerns about the health effects of aircraft noise for two main reasons:
• There are studies that link excess noise exposure to increased stress levels
• Some studies suggest that chronic stress might lead to an increased risk of high blood pressure (hypertension) and heart disease for some people

Noise and Stress
The human stress response is a natural coping mechanism that occurs when we perceive something around us to be a threat. For people who are susceptible, the stress response triggers a sudden release of stress hormones. These hormones can cause temporary changes in heart rate and blood pressure.

For some people, a sudden or uncontrollable intense noise may be enough to cause a stress response. In most cases, the stress response is short-term, and the person’s heart rate and blood pressure soon return to normal.

However, some scientists are concerned that chronic stress, no matter what the cause, may lead to persistent increases in stress hormone levels and blood pressure. This may increase the long- term risk of heart disease. Health Canada’s scientists are tracking these concerns, and have evaluated a number of studies about possible links between noise and stress- related health effects.

Minimizing Your Risk
If you live near an airport, or are planning to move near one, a good first step is to get specific details about aircraft noise levels in the neighbourhood. You can do this by contacting your local airport for a copy of the noise contour (noise map) for your area. From there, you can compare your local noise contour to the contours recommended in the following document:
Land Use in the Vicinity of Airports

Health Canada’s Role
Health Canada provides advice to the public and regulatory authorities, such as Transport Canada, on the health effects of aircraft noise. This ensures that health risks are taken into account when decisions are made that affect our exposure to aircraft noise.

In addition, Health Canada’s scientists are continuing to assess the potential health effects of aircraft noise by:
• Conducting their own research on the stress response to aircraft noise
• Tracking and assessing scientific papers by other experts in this field
• Participating in the International Congress on Noise as a Public Health Problem, which takes place every three years

These efforts will ensure that Health Canada maintains a sound scientific basis for providing up-to-date advice regarding the health effects of aircraft noise on people who live near airports.


Atlanta Study:
Airport-related noise, proximity, and housing prices in Atlanta

Health Canada,
Environmental and Workplace Health, Aircraft Noise

Health Canada:
It’s Your Health

Environment Canada:
Air Health Indicator

The UK Aviation Environment Federation: Environmental Impacts of Aviation

For additional information see
Health Effects