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Noise Mapping (Round 4) Stakeholder Review - NO0256

The aim of this project is to ascertain the needs and views of key stakeholders and end users on the necessary functionality and data which they would like to see incorporated into a new environmental noise model. This will inform our procurement of the model, which is necessary to meet existing policy and legal obligations, but into which we are intending to build sufficient flexibility to accommodate some future requirements to maximise cost-effectiveness.
Changes to the required methodologies and technological developments mean that, for Round 4, the modelling process must differ from previous rounds. Developed correctly, this model could provide a solid basis for future rounds of mapping as well as exploring future policy scenarios. It could also potentially be valuable to others in the public sector (planning authorities; transport authorities and environmental health authorities, among others). Previous rounds of mapping, while freely available to users outside government, were developed solely with statutory obligations in mind, and as a result may not answer the requirements of other users.
In developing a new model at a time when more data is available than ever before, and technology allows greater and more economical functionality than in previous rounds, Defra is keen to maximise value for public money by identifying the views, needs and potential uses of these authorities and taking them into account at an early stage of the project planning. Developing the model in such a way that the geographical scope can be expanded to include the Devolved Areas would offer further value for money, avoiding duplication of effort and spending, and providing the possibility of a consistent model across the UK, should all the Devolved Administrations wish to use the same model.
While it is likely that several iterations of development will be needed before the full range of reasonably attainable functionality can be achieved, it will be important to develop a full view of what the most desirable functions are before commencing the design and build of the model. This will make it possible to make sure that the model is developed from the start in a way which makes it adaptable to accommodate additional functionality and uses, dependent upon sufficient interest from wider stakeholders; future funding, and future policy requirements and changes to the legislative regime governing noise management in the UK.
With this in mind, Sustainable Acoustics, an independent acoustic consultancy which combines an appreciation of how sound affects us all with a desire work towards creating a sustainable future, was engaged by Defra to assess the views of relevant stakeholders. The brief included finding out whether and how the existing noise maps are used by stakeholders; and what potential additional functions, data sources and outputs, and interactive possibilities might be incorporated to make the new model as useful as reasonably possible. The scope of the assessment did not include the policy landscape underpinning or arising from the noise model or its ensuing maps, but rather the development of the model itself and its potential uses in combining and providing mapping data.
Project Documents
• FRP - Final Report : NO0256 Noise Mapping (Round 4) Stakeholder Review - Final Report   (1525k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2020

To: 2020

Cost: £23,880
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Sustainable Acoustics Ltd
Natural Environment              
Public Health              
Fields of Study