Assessment of needs for capacity-building for health risk assessment of environmental noise: case studies
A group of international experts met in Bonn in October 2010 to define and agree on the assessment of the burden of disease from environmental noise, with a focus on cardiovascular disorders and sleep disturbance, and to promote knowledge transfer and capacity-building in European countries in the area of health risk assessment of environmental noise. The needs for awareness-raising and capacity-building in new EU member states, south-eastern European countries and newly independent states were studied on the basis of reports of experts from Albania, Belarus, the Czech Republic, Georgia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. The following common needs were identified: harmonization of the implementation of the Environmental Noise Directive 2002/49/EC, especially for strategic noise mapping and noise action plans, human resources development through educatiton and training in health risk assessment, and provision of methodological guidelines for health risk assessment of environmental noise exposure. WHO, the European Commission and expert networks are important in promoting the transfer of knowledge and building human and institutional capacities for environmental noise risk assessment.