December 1, 2005
Noise Free America
For immediate release
Madison: The University of California, Los Angeles has won this month’s “Noisy Dozen” award from Noise Free America for being the loudest campus in the nation, in the loudest city in the nation. At UCLA, students and faculty can barely hear themselves think.
“The place is just incredibly noisy,” said Ted Rueter, Noise Free America’s director, and a former professor of political science at UCLA. “You name the source of noise, and UCLA has it: jackhammers, leaf blowers, back-up beepers, boom cars. car alarms, boom boxes, loud elevators, banging doors, honking horns, loud music, hedge trimmers, weed whackers, generators, traffic, buses, garbage trucks. It is the most difficult place to work and study I have ever been.”
Rueter was so fed up with the noise situation on campus, he founded “Noise Free UCLA,” which eventually became “Noise Free America.” However, he noted that the UCLA administration was fairly unreceptive. “The chancellor and the head of Facilities Management were far more concerned with constructing new building and maintaining the facade of ‘activity’ than creating any semblance of peace and tranquility. The UCLA administration seems completely unaware of the harmful effects of noise on academic achievement. While UCLA is one of the world’s great academic institutions, the learning environment is genuinely poor.”
Noise Free America’s Rueter also noted that “noise is not only bad for learning–it’s bad for health. Noise is linked to depression. chronic fatigue, sleep deprivation, heart problems, and hearing loss. Noise is Americans’ top complaint about their neighborhoods, and the number one reason why they wish to move.”
Noise Free America is a national citizens group opposed to noise pollution. Past “winners” of the award include Echo Manufacturing, Pioneer Electronics, and Governor Jesse Ventura.