Rapid development has resulted to increased population, urban area expansion, industrialization and transport growth which puts pressure on Dubai to manage noise and EMF levels in the Emirate. Dubai Municipality is responsible for monitoring and managing noise and EMF in Dubai through a network of ground stations to ensure compliance with the Federal noise limits and the adopted EMF guidelines of International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), respectively. The Ground noise and EMF stations are strategically located to monitor noise and EMF in areas with prominent emission sources or sensitive receptors. Data generated from these monitoring stations provide a valuable information and identify the affected areas and exposed population. These serve as basis for the preparation of action plans and development of environmental control regulations. Exposure to high noise levels is most often experienced in urban, industrialized and densely-populated areas with industrial activities and transport as the main anthropogenic noise sources. Construction and commercial activities additionally contribute to environmental noise levels. Electromagnetic field (EMF), on the other hand, occurs naturally and are produced by electric charges from lightning and from the Earth’s magnetic field. Man-made sources of EMF include electric transmission lines, industrial equipment, domestic appliances, telecommunications towers and mobile phones.
The noise monitoring network is a fully integrated solution for unattended noise monitoring featuring an internal web server for system configuration, live data streaming, data management and battery powered operation providing true flexibility for both short and long-term measurements. The stations follow the latest European and ISO standards, and are equipped with solar panels for a sustainable source of energy. EMF monitoring stations are also utilizing solar panels for energy source. The stations complies with the essential requirements of the EU Directive 2004/108/EC, International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Guidance on monitoring of electromagnetic field levels (ITU-K.83 ), and Spanish Association for Standardization (UNE-EN) standards. Calibration works are performed for all of noise and EMF stations on regular basis in accordance with ISO standards to ensure data accuracy and reliability. Real-time measurements are transmitted online to the central control center in DM for data collection and management. As the rapid growth of the Emirate is expected to continue in the coming years, expansion plan for the number of noise and EMF monitoring stations is in progress with the aim to cover the new built areas and areas requiring continuous monitoring.