The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER)Directive 038: Noise Control, requires a Noise Impact Assessment (NIA) before submitting an application for a new facility or modification to an existing facility. This applies in situations where there is a reasonable expectation of a continuous noise source (for new facilities) or a change in the characterization of noise (for existing facilities). Directive 038 outlines procedures for completing full-detail NIAs for complex facilities and methods to conduct simplified calculations for smaller facilities or remote areas.
Examples of simple facilities include:
For these types of facilities, many applicants have developed in-house, low-detail NIA’s. These in-house assessments can often be challenged by the regulator because of the difficulties in obtaining credible and relevant sound source emission data, and applying acoustical theory. These challenges can result in application delays, regulatory enforcement, and loss of reputation for the facility owner.
Patching Associates has developed a process that produces a lower-detail NIA for simple facilities. This Screening NIA tool helps to quickly assemble necessary facility information in order to identify credible sound source emission values within Patching’s archives of resources, which include:
This tool calculates the resulting noise levels and then produces a NIA report that satisfies the format suggested by the AER in these situations. If the results show a high margin of compliance, then the NIA is adequate. If the results indicate only a marginal compliance or non-compliance, then Patching’s team of experts will offer further guidance for the most cost-effective means for achieving compliance and ensuring a technically complete NIA.
Patching’s engineers ensure the analysis is completed using credible and relevant source data, valid assumptions, and correct acoustical theory. Patching’s P.Eng. stamped Screening NIA reports provide the necessary credibility for approval by the regulators.
The Screening NIA tool provides a low-cost NIA option for situations that do not carry significant compliance risk but still require regulatory approval. the lower-detail NIA report is adequate for facilities with a high margin of compliance. If it reveals insufficient margin of compliance, it still provides relevant information for use by Patching’s experts to guide you to cost-effective compliance.
For complex facilities, noise mitigation costs are critical to the project, and detailed analysis is necessary to lower project risks. Patching Associates excels at full-detail NIA’s and this Screening NIA Online Tool allows facility applicants to tailor the level of detail to their project in order to optimize noise management costs.
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The Screening NIA tool provides a low-cost option for situations that do not carry significant compliance risk but still require regulatory approval.