Apr 13, 2011
GLOBE At Night Reports New Findings
Written under: Science
GLOBE at Night, an international campaign by the National Optical Astronomy Observatory in Tucson which has been running for six years already, has released their latest report on the world’s light pollution.
This program asks citizen scientists to track outdoor lighting levels in their area and submit their findings and observations to the GLOBE at Night website.
It has been found this year that a lot of poorly aimed and unshielded outdoor lights are still very much prevalent in the world. This wastes more than $2 billion (17 billion kilowatt-hours) of energy in the United States alone each year.
In an interview, GLOBE at Night Project Director, Dr. Connie Walker of the National Optical Astronomy Observatory says this about the project:
“Monitoring our night sky by citizen scientists is invaluable in identifying areas where the glare of unshielded lighting may be hazardous and where energy is being wasted.
All it takes is a few minutes for a family to measure their night sky brightness by noting how many stars are missing from an easy-to-find constellation like Leo (in the northern hemisphere) or Crux (in the southern hemisphere). This tells us how much light is directed upwards into the sky.
We need to improve our outdoor lighting fixtures and practices; many of our current lights waste a tremendous amount of valuable energy and the beauty of our night sky. Thanks to thousands of citizen scientists participating in GLOBE at Night, we are working to preserve both of these important resources.”