The tool is named Norstøy. It is designed to calculate the outdoor noise levels anywhere in the vicinity of the public road network. It is based on Nord 2000, a state-of-the-art model for outdoor sound propagation, resulted from recent work at SINTEF in cooperation with other Nordic technology research institutes. One key feature of the model is that it makes precise simulations of how the frequency content (spectrum) of the noise is influenced by weather conditions and geometrical details in surrounding buildings, noise screens or topography.
NPRA has recently used Norstøy to produce complete noise maps for all major cities in Norway as well as for the busiest main highway roads. The results are made available for the public by interactive maps on Internet. You can explore the noise levels in your neighbourhood at www.miljøstatus.no, or download the app "Miljøstatus" to get it on your smartphone.
One reason for producing these noise maps and publish them is to raise the public consciousness of noise related problems. Noise annoyance is the largest environmental problem in Norway, and it is increasing rapidly. This is mainly driven by urbanisation and increased population density in the cities. Making people aware of this before they choose where to live or what kind of house to build is a means to promote the good choices and thereby contribute to a better society.