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8 Things You Can Do To Reduce Light Pollution

Mammals: If mammals are exposed to too much artificial light at night, they can experience things like an impairment to their natural night vision, lowered ability to reproduce (threatening propagation of the species), and exposure to predators. Birds are particularly hard hit by light pollution.

Birds: Many species rely on darkness to hunt, and birds can become drawn to an artificial light source like a beam that can results in a number of negative effects. The US Fish and Wildlife Service estimates that the number of birds that die due to attraction to tall towers that are lit at night is 4 to 5 million! Migrating birds can be thrown off course from artificial light at night never to reach their destination.

Reptiles: Sea turtles are a tragic example of how coastal light pollution can harm reptiles. Sea turtle  hatchlings crawl to the ocean instinctively by following the stars and moon, but coastal night lighting can confuse them and cause them to go in the wrong direction and they become exhausted and dehydrated and expire before making it to the ocean.

Insects, amphibians and of course humans are also effected and there is a lot of research still taking place to understand the full impact of this type of environmental hazard that has mainly been riding under the radar for a lot of us.

So, here’s what you can do!

  • Minimize outdoor lighting - only have it where you really need it
  • Install a full cutoff fixture - full cutoff fixtures reduce the chance for light to escape above the horizontal plane – keeping the light focused downward where it is needed
  • Put your outdoor lights on timers - obviously this will help those of us who sometimes forget to flip the switch on the way to bed
  • Get motion-sensor lighting – hopefully you can find one that works better than ours and of course, this helps minimize lighting that doesn’t need to be on all the time
  • Colored lights can help – using yellow or amber lights can reduce the negative impact of night lighting
  • Get active - find out what the lighting plan is all about in your community and make sure the powers that be are educated about how important this issue is
  • Listen to the Green Divas: Short & Sassy 1.5 minute piece on Light Pollution
  • Listen to the Green Divas Radio Show interview with Kevin Poe, the Dark Ranger

Read more: Conservation, Eco-friendly tips, Environment, Green, Nature, Nature & Wildlife, Reduce, Recycle & Reuse, The Green Divas Podcast, , , , , , , , , , ,

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The Green Divas

The Green Divas share low-stress ways to live a deeper shade of green through a weekly radio show, podcasts, videos and blog posts. Working with talented partners and credible sources like myEARTH360 the Green Divas produce content on a variety of topics relating to a healthy green lifestyle. Visit The Green Divas website to learn more, and check out The Green Divas on FacebookTwitter too!

75 comments

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7:00AM PDT on Aug 13, 2015

Unfortunately, both of the two street lights that annoy me shining in my window belong to the town and I have to wait for the town to get around to switching to full cutoff fixtures.

10:11AM PDT on Jun 14, 2015

Very good!
Thank you.

7:35AM PDT on Sep 24, 2014

The other factor to take into consideration, I would have thought, would be the (artificial) light coming from technology (phones, computers, TV screens of all kinds), etc.

2:06PM PDT on Jul 10, 2014

Save the sky and decrease light pollution!

6:14PM PST on Dec 24, 2013

unbelievable that more people haven't been reading or commenting...love the sky picture at the top of the article....

3:58PM PDT on Sep 15, 2013

very important!

2:26PM PDT on Sep 12, 2013

Thanks! :)

2:21PM PDT on Sep 12, 2013

Thank you!

2:50AM PDT on Jul 31, 2013

Thanks for the tips !

1:32PM PDT on Jul 28, 2013

Good tips,Thanks for sharing

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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