The nighttime environment is a crucial natural resource for all life on Earth, but the glow of uncontrolled outdoor lighting has hidden the stars, radically changing the nighttime environment. International Dark Sky Week draws attention to the problems associated with light pollution and promotes simple solutions. Here are five ways you can support dark skies right now:
1. Check Your Outdoor Lights
Check the lighting around your house. Use Dark Sky Friendly Lighting only where you need it, in only the amount needed. Make sure you are using shielded fixtures so that light is not emitted into the sky. And use energy saving features like timers, dimmers, and motion sensors on all outdoor lights. Learn more.
2. Talk to Friends and Neighbors
Talk to your friends and neighbors about light pollution, or join an IDA Chapter near you. Go online to www.darksky.org/resources to download free outreach materials to help you educate your community about light pollution.
Together, we can do big things! Every dollar supports IDA programming that works to conserve dark skies. Go to www.darksky.org to give, and please consider making a recurring donation.
4. Shop IDA
You can buy things you love AND support IDA with a percentage of your purchase going to save dark skies. There are lots of products to choose from at our Zazzle store.
And don’t forget! Artist Tyler Nordgren, widely known for his classic images of the night sky and other wondrous landscapes, has generously created 100 limited edition, signed and uniquely numbered posters for 2017 International Dark Sky Week. Each signed and numbered print is being sold for $100 (shipping included) and can be purchased through the end of International Dark Sky Week, ending April 28, 2017. Learn More.
5. Join the People’s Climate Movement Near You, April 29
About 15 million tons of CO2 are emitted each year, mostly to illuminate streets and parking lots. Up to 50 percent of that light is wasted. Too much light, unshielded light, and improperly aimed lighting costs the US $3.3 billion per year in wasted energy. The People’s Climate March is a significant opportunity to spread awareness about IDA’s work. And you don’t have to do it alone! We’ve made free light pollution posters available for download, and you can also print or share IDA’s energy waste infographic!