We have all heard of water pollution and air pollution. Also, most people wouldn’t argue with the fact that they really are a problem. However, light may be the only source of pollution overlooked by the average consumer. This may be because the average person doesn’t think “lightly” when the word pollution is mentioned in the news or in conversations. After all, isn’t it just lightweight? No, it’s actually not that simple. Light pollution is defined as the illumination of the night sky due to the scattering of artificial light, also known as sky glare. Unnecessary light not only wastes a large amount of electricity, but also negatively affects wildlife.
Light pollution, also called sky glare, is defined as the wasteful escape of light into the night sky, causing a glow in urban/suburban areas. It also refers to the light
breaks up in the surrounding atmosphere. This refraction is strongly correlated with the wavelength of light. Rayleigh scattering, which makes the daytime sky appear blue, also affects the light from the earth to the sky and is then redirected to the sky glow seen from the ground. As a result, blue light contributes more to sky glow than an equal amount of yellow light. Sky glare is particularly troubling to astronomers because it reduces the contrast in the night sky to such an extent that it can become impossible to see even the brightest stars.
So, what kind of lighting is harmful? The truth is, there is indoor and outdoor lighting that can be harmful in the long run. Research has been done on the subject for years and it is well known that indoor fluorescent lighting can cause many health problems such as migraine headaches, fatigue, irritability and many other health problems. However, night security lighting for the outdoor environment poses the biggest threat in terms of light pollution. Also, research has shown that outdoor security lighting does not reduce crime and uses about 800 pounds of coal per light each year. Have you looked at the sky at night only to see a dim mist of light? This is an excellent example of light pollution. Researchers have been investigating this issue for years and have produced real photos of landmasses, cities and countryside around the world at night. The results spoke for themselves; night light is definitely a problem.
Light, which is considered irritating, wasteful or harmful, harms the environment and health like other types of pollution. Some indoor and outdoor lighting is considered harmful in the long run, It is well known that indoor fluorescent lightning can cause many health problems. such as migraines, headaches, fatigue, irritability and many other health conditions. About 800 pounds of coal are wasted per light each year. Outdoors, light pollution harms nocturnal wildlife.
Continuous lighting can destroy crops, trees and even wildlife. Plants depend on the light and dark cycle for proper growth. The onset of darkness is crucial to the flowering and reproductive process. Birds have been known to fly into towers and windows at night due to the confusion caused by night lighting. The fact that the night should be dark does not always hold true nowadays. In some places like Las Vegas, you can’t even tell.
If it’s day or night because it’s billions of brights, you feel like you’re in another dimension.
Life has existed in constant cycles of natural light and dark, so the disruption of these patterns affects many aspects of animal behavior. Light pollution confuses animals’ navigation, alters competitive interactions, alters predator-prey relationships, and affects animal physiology. Studies show that light pollution around lakes prevents zooplankton from eating surface algae, causing algae blooms that kill the lake’s plants and reduce water quality. Night light also interferes with the ability of moths and other nocturnal insects to navigate. Night blooming flowers that depend on moths for pollination will be affected by night lighting. This leads to the decline of species of plants that cannot reproduce and change the long-term ecology of a region.
Lights on tall buildings disorient migratory birds. It is estimated that the number of birds killed after being drawn to high towers is 4-5 million per year. The Deadly Light Awareness Program (FLAP) works with building owners in Toronto, Canada and other cities to turn off the lights during migration periods to reduce bird mortality.
Contrary to popular belief, sea turtle babies are not interested in the moon. Instead, they find the ocean away from the dark silhouette of the dunes and vegetation, a behavior in which artificial light interferes. The lights may also confuse young seabirds as they leave their nests and fly into the sea.
Nocturnal frogs and salamanders are also affected. Because they are nocturnal, they wake up at night. Light pollution causes salamanders to emerge later from their hiding place, giving them less time to mate and reproduce.
To do your bit for the environment, make sure your outdoor lighting is compliant lighting. This is meant to only illuminate the ground beneath them and never shine onto a neighboring property or the night sky. Second, by making sure your outdoor lights are only on when needed. Lighting from dusk to dawn should be strictly avoided. Third, reduce the wattage of your bulbs. The ability of the human eye to adapt to the amount of light available is remarkable. Too much light can be overwhelming and dazzling, actually reducing visibility. Even a small reduction in wattage will reduce light pollution.