The Ecocriticism Study Group

of the American Musicological Society

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Freeman, Sound Pollution

As part of her Undergraduate Research Assistant Position at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Miranda Freeman wrote a research paper on anthropogenic sound pollution and its effects on the environment.  She won third prize in the humanities division at the 2012 UNCG Undergraduate Research Expo.

Consequences of Anthropogenic Noise on Wildlife and Ecosystems

Abstract: Anthropogenic sound pollution disrupts the hunting, reproduction, and communication in many species of birds, bats, cetaceans, fish and amphibians. Since these activities are essential to the survival of any species, interference from sound pollution may result in the decline of affected populations. As we know, life within an ecosystem is extremely interconnected. Therefore, this loss of wildlife may in turn have substantial implications for the ecosystems they inhabit. Some measures have been taken to help mitigate the effect of human noise pollution on the environment, but more are needed. The auditory skills that musicians possess can be a unique and helpful tool for the research required to identify, anticipate, and resolve potential problems.

Link to paper (PDF).