How far should an acoustical consultant go to investigate enhanced noise propagation due to meteorological effects? This paper was inspired by recent updates to Victorian noise policy, which includes more stringent requirements for consideration of atmospheric effects. This paper reviews the current requirements for considering meteorological conditions for noise assessments in different Australian jurisdictions and investigates the impact of both differing predictive algorithms and metrological data collection methods by means of a real-world case study. The authors conclude that noise prediction algorithms which allow for variable meteorological inputs are highly sensitive to the accuracy of those inputs, and further review of their application to noise assessments in Australian conditions is warranted. This is due, in part, to the difficulty in obtaining accurate meteorological data for a given site. This paper is the first part of a two-part study designed to inform a consolidated practical method for acoustical consultants to apply in Australian conditions. Part one, this paper, reviews the current state of knowledge. Part two would be a field study with concurrent detailed measurements of atmospheric conditions and noise levels to inform appropriate weather data collection methods and predictive standards for Australian conditions.

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