Reducing Londoners’ exposure to noise pollution

Questions to the Mayor of London – answered on 28 September 2022.

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Photo of Zack Polanski Zack Polanski Green

What work have you undertaken to reduce Londoners’ exposure to noise pollution?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

Whilst my powers to monitor and control noise are limited, I recognise the importance of reducing noise in our city.

My spatial development plan for London, the London Plan, contain policies on managing and mitigating noise from new residential and non-aviation development, and my London Environment Strategy recognises the impact that noise can have on Londoner’s quality of life and promotes more quiet and tranquil spaces. Both strategies recognise the impact noise can have on creating Healthy Streets.

My Transport Strategy, and Transport for London’s (TfL) work more generally, encourage sustainable travel, which has traffic noise reduction benefits, as does TfL’s work to encourage the switch to electric vehicles and electrifying the bus-fleet.

TfL is also supporting Department for Environment and Rural Affair’s (DEFRA) updating of its noise modelling, which will result in interactive and accurate noise maps to better target interventions across the city

TfL is actively working to reduce excessive noise on, and from, the London Underground network. TfL carries out targeted interventions to reduce noise, including rail grinding, removing redundant rail joints, maintaining points and crossings, replacing track fastenings, and re-ballasting track.

Finally, as air traffic has rebounded, aircraft noise is once again a significant concern to Londoners. In the London Plan, I set out clearly the need for the noise impacts of aviation to be fully addressed and I have pressed Government on this issue. I continue to challenge proposals by London’s airports that risk worsening aircraft noise.