Dark Skies for Northern Ireland http://darkskies4ni.co.uk Promoting the proper use of exterior public and private lighting to reduce light pollution Mon, 23 Oct 2017 09:28:57 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.10 75924039 Petition to introduce legislation to combat light pollution http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/petition-to-introduce-legislation-to-combat-light-pollution/ Sun, 14 Aug 2016 13:01:48 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=103838 Continue reading Petition to introduce legislation to combat light pollution ]]> Light pollution does not only steal from us our stars, but also has massive negative implications for both people and the environment.

Therefore, steps should be taken to reduce light pollution, particularly in areas where it has the greatest impact on the wellbeing of humans or other species.

In humans, light pollution contributes to increased stress, sleep deprivation and disorders like insomnia as well as having less apparent impacts such as an increased risk of obesity and breast cancer.

Environmentally the impacts are even more clear. Light pollution affects the migration patterns of birds, the breeding of amphibians and insects, and the survival of sea turtles to give but a few examples.

Government response

The Government understands that light pollution and excessive or wasteful use of lighting poses a number of social, economic and environmental problems, and has worked hard to reduce the negative effects of light pollution.

In 2014, the Government published a policy update, ‘Artificial Light in the Environment’, highlighting the steps that have been taken to reduce artificial light pollution. The update is available to view at:www.gov.uk/government/publications/artificial-light-in-the-environment-policy-update.

Defra will continue to work with other Departments to enable the impact of outdoor artificial lighting to be suitably considered in future relevant Government policy development.

Street lighting in England is the responsibility of Highways England for the Strategic Road Network and the relevant local highway authority for all other public highways. Local highway authorities have a duty under the Highways Act 1980 to maintain the public highways in their charge, including street lighting where provided. It is for local highway authorities to decide on what type of technology they should introduce into their service.

The Department for Transport encourages all local authorities to replace their street lighting with LED lighting where it is economically feasible to do so. New, modern luminaires can reduce the amount of glare emitted. The Department also encourages local authorities to consider best practice when making decisions about lighting on their networks. Advice is available from the UK Lighting Board and the Institute of Lighting Professionals.

Artificial light from premises is recognised in the Environmental Protection Act 1990 as a potential ‘statutory nuisance’. Under this legislation, local authorities have a duty to take reasonably practicable steps to investigate complaints of “artificial light emitted from premises so as to be prejudicial to health or a nuisance”. More information on statutory nuisance rules, lights that are exempt and how councils can assess light is available at: www.gov.uk/guidance/artificial-light-nuisances-how-councils-deal-with-complaints.

We also recognise that artificial light is an important issue in the context of planning and sustainable development. The Department for Communities and Local Government’s (DCLG) National Planning Policy Framework includes consideration of the impact of light pollution from artificial light on local amenity, intrinsically dark landscapes and nature conservation. DCLG has also published additional guidance setting out when light pollution is relevant to planning: planningguidance.communities.gov.uk/blog/guidance/light-pollution

Light pollution can also have a disturbing effect on certain nocturnal species, particularly some bat species. However, we do not fully understand its impact on wildlife. Under the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010 and the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, certain species are protected from disturbance, which may, in some circumstances, include light, for example leaving the lights on in a church to deter bats.

Under the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006, public authorities have an additional duty to have regard for conserving biodiversity when carrying out their functions. In particular, any planning application that may impact on protected species should have an ecological assessment. Any such disturbance proposed in a planning application would require an application to Natural England (in England) for a licence to allow it to happen. Further information on the management of protected species can be found at:www.gov.uk/guidance/protected-species-and-sites-how-to-review-planning-proposals.

Defra is pleased to see that policies in place to protect and enhance valued landscapes are helping to reduce light pollution. Defra Ministers have supported parks that have applied to become International Dark Sky Parks or Reserves. So far, Exmoor National Park and South Downs National Park have been successfully designated International Dark Sky Reserves. The Kielder Water and Forest Park and Northumberland National Park jointly achieved the designation of Dark Sky Park, now the largest in Europe.

An eight-point plan for National Parks was launched in March 2016. It mentions that dark sky parks are helping to extend the season for National Parks and that “The Government will work with National Park Authorities to make this possible”. Further information can be found at:www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-parks-8-point-plan-for-england-2016-to-2020.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

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Bright times for dark skies – Financial Times http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/bright-times-for-dark-skies-financial-times/ Sun, 14 Aug 2016 12:58:07 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=103851

Financial Times
As light pollution has become an increasing blight, scientists and astronomers have been fighting back, and Asia is the latest frontier in the quest to develop more dark sky parks. The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA), a US non-profit ...

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Financial Times
As light pollution has become an increasing blight, scientists and astronomers have been fighting back, and Asia is the latest frontier in the quest to develop more dark sky parks. The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA), a US non-profit

Read more here:: http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=t&fd=R&ct2=uk&usg=AFQjCNESvPXTFWAJ2OW_aNp_tIifMvtzmA&clid=c3a7d30bb8a4878e06b80cf16b898331&ei=Zp6tV4qgLKuQzAakw7_wCw&url=http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/0dfcad38-5f46-11e6-ae3f-77baadeb1c93.html

      

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The dark side of light pollution – The Hindu http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/the-dark-side-of-light-pollution-the-hindu/ Sun, 14 Aug 2016 12:57:12 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=103843

The Hindu
Now new research in animals shows that excessive exposure to “light pollution” may be worse for health than previously known, taking a toll on muscle and bone strength. Researchers at Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands tracked the ...

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The Hindu
Now new research in animals shows that excessive exposure to “light pollution” may be worse for health than previously known, taking a toll on muscle and bone strength. Researchers at Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands tracked the

Read more here:: http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=t&fd=R&ct2=uk&usg=AFQjCNGbpli7CH4fKeS3XpLMtd6OxC9NGg&clid=c3a7d30bb8a4878e06b80cf16b898331&ei=NG-vV4C4F6GXzAa0kr-ADA&url=http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/the-dark-side-of-light-pollution/article8986546.ece

      

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Plans to dim Wem’s street lights at night move closer – shropshirestar.com http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/plans-to-dim-wems-street-lights-at-night-move-closer-shropshirestar-com/ Tue, 09 Aug 2016 08:16:48 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=103861

shropshirestar.com
Meanwhile, Shrewsbury Town Council has changed a number of the bulbs used on lights to improve the illumination of pathways in the town while cutting down on light pollution. It comes after Shropshire Council decided last year to switch off two-thirds ...

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shropshirestar.com
Meanwhile, Shrewsbury Town Council has changed a number of the bulbs used on lights to improve the illumination of pathways in the town while cutting down on light pollution. It comes after Shropshire Council decided last year to switch off two-thirds

Read more here:: http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=t&fd=R&ct2=uk&usg=AFQjCNEEcjZk8CcelCXWuOhXpTD4AAbkPA&clid=c3a7d30bb8a4878e06b80cf16b898331&ei=9JipV5OsNczNzAaBkpf4CQ&url=http://www.shropshirestar.com/news/2016/08/09/plans-to-dim-wems-street-lights-at-night-move-closer/

      

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Light Pollution in the UK ‘Causing Spring to Come a Week Earlier’ – International Environmental Technology http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/light-pollution-in-the-uk-causing-spring-to-come-a-week-earlier-international-environmental-technology/ Sun, 07 Aug 2016 07:00:43 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=103866

International Environmental Technology
A new report on the effect of light pollution on the phenology of plant life in the UK has revealed that night-time lighting in urban areas may be causing spring to arrive as much as one week earlier than normal. The study, published in the journal ...

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International Environmental Technology
A new report on the effect of light pollution on the phenology of plant life in the UK has revealed that night-time lighting in urban areas may be causing spring to arrive as much as one week earlier than normal. The study, published in the journal

Read more here:: http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=t&fd=R&ct2=uk&usg=AFQjCNEDVmBQCOS1OJmYXZH3-gFErURVPg&clid=c3a7d30bb8a4878e06b80cf16b898331&ei=k2WwV5DWJ-eMzAbKrKGgCg&url=http://www.envirotech-online.com/news/environmental-laboratory/7/breaking_news/light_pollution_in_the_uk_causing_spring_to_come_a_week_earlier/39751/

      

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Using Drones to Monitor for Light Pollution – DZone News http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/using-drones-to-monitor-for-light-pollution-dzone-news/ Sat, 30 Jul 2016 05:06:40 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=103875

DZone News
Now, a team from Nottingham Trent University has built a drone-based system that can be used to monitor light pollution. Light pollution has a big impact on the natural world, with the seasonal cycle of trees disrupted and millions of birds killed each ...

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DZone News
Now, a team from Nottingham Trent University has built a drone-based system that can be used to monitor light pollution. Light pollution has a big impact on the natural world, with the seasonal cycle of trees disrupted and millions of birds killed each

Read more here:: http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=t&fd=R&ct2=uk&usg=AFQjCNHK34GyOS0uaIkZ8RIlFrF7FEjkNA&clid=c3a7d30bb8a4878e06b80cf16b898331&ei=k2WwV5DWJ-eMzAbKrKGgCg&url=https://dzone.com/articles/using-drones-to-monitor-for-light-pollution

      

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Welcome http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/welcome/ Mon, 29 Dec 2014 20:25:06 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=1815 uk_from_space_nrsc-dmsp_baaposterThis website has been setup to promote the proper use of exterior public and private lighting in Northern Ireland to reduce light pollution.

Dark skies, moonlit and star-studded nights and the dawning of the day are part of the rich variety of our countryside. Yet nowadays much of the country is lit, often throughout the night. With more and more road lights, "security" lights and floodlights we are in danger of losing our starlit skies which once were an area of outstanding natural beauty.

Download your free Better lighting through design brochure.]]>
uk_from_space_nrsc-dmsp_baaposterThis website has been setup to promote the proper use of exterior public and private lighting in Northern Ireland to reduce light pollution.

Dark skies, moonlit and star-studded nights and the dawning of the day are part of the rich variety of our countryside. Yet nowadays much of the country is lit, often throughout the night. With more and more road lights, “security” lights and floodlights we are in danger of losing our starlit skies which once were an area of outstanding natural beauty.

Download your free Better lighting through design brochure.

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Light pollution and boating safety http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/light-pollution-and-boating-safety/ Thu, 18 Dec 2014 23:21:01 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=15232 ]]> 15232 Earth at Night http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/earth-at-night/ Mon, 29 Sep 2014 19:21:42 +0000 http://darkskies4ni.co.uk/?p=1780 NASA has been studying the effects of human existence on the planet since the first satellite went into the inky black skies of the 1950s. Below, we see how the world has changed in just ten years.

Earth at Night 2003

Earth at Night 2012

Comparison images

night2003 night2012

It’s obvious from the photo comparison above that light pollution and wasted light is a huge and ever growing problem throughout the world. As we hear more on the news of potential blackouts due to not having enough power stations, maybe we should take a step back and maybe try to reduce this crazy waste of energy. If the light is going up, it’s wasted and costing each country millions every year.

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