Understanding light pollution

 Hello and welcome to my blog. The place to find out more about my arty crafty life and also the 'narrative' behind much of my art .

I'm assuming that if you read my blogs and follow my work your aware of my connection to nature and have a similar ethos of wonderment at our natural world?

Its struck me that its now so well known and undoubtedly believed, that climate change is real and the destruction of our natural habitat is perilous. The oceans are polluted with plastics and Macdonalds now has cardboard straws which we dont like but pretty much all agree is the way forward...dont we?

Many of us have made an effort to make small changes to our shopping habits trying to remember to take our own bags to the supermarket and perhaps even going as far as bamboo tooth brushes and plastic free paste.. New mums are opting for biodegradable wet wipes and the kids want to save the polar bears and are turning off lights but, other than that, we still donk know or understand much about the destruction of our natural world.

Light fairies is a body of work Im currently working on to highlight light polution.

The narrative is to evoke a mystical sence of surrealism, using fairies in different natural and unnatural lights.

I have completed 2 pictures so far.

This is 'Moonlight Fairy'

You will see she has human attributes but her promotions are not human.  This has been done purposely to enhance the ability for 'relation' to the painting. 

The positioning of her poised and reaching out to the moon depicts the struggle that many animals are facing. They need to follow the moon for so many 'navigation purposes , light polution inhibits this.

This is The Sunset fairies.

Sunset is something we all enjoy everyday without realising the importance of what the night does for global wildlife. Light polution has its most devastating effects in the dark hours...sunset it the beginning of that time.

Following is some information from IDA. I hope you find interesting and informative.  We can all help with some simple changes..a little action from many of us goes a long way !




What is it ? Why am I highlighting this in my new body of work and what can we do??

I realy hope this blog helps you understand the importance of night and day on our planet and what small changes we can all make to help.😊

 What is light pollution?

Light pollution is excessive, misdirected, or obtrusive artificial (usually outdoor) light. Too much light pollution has consequences: it washes out starlight in the night sky, interferes with astronomical research, disrupts ecosystems, has adverse health effects and wastes energy. (Google)

Since life on earth began all life has been able to rely on night and day as surley as life and death. Humans have radically disrupted this cycle by lighting up the night.

Flora and fawna depend on this rhythm to govern life-sustaining behaviors such as reproduction, nourishment, sleep and protection from predators.

 Evidence suggests that artificial light at night  can have deadly effects on many creatures including amphibians, birds, mammals, insects and plants.

Artificial Lights Disrupt the World’s Ecosystems

Turning night into day with electric light.

Its though by leading scientists in this area that ," the introduction of artificial light probably represents the most drastic change human beings have made to their environment.”(our planet)

 Prey animals are at higher risk, as they cannot take cover in the dark so easily. In and around  “large cities," skies are hundreds, even thousands of times brighter than they were 2 centuries ago. We are only beginning to learn the negative effect this has had on nocturnal ecology.”

Glare from artificial lights can also impact wetland habitats that are home to important frogs toads and other organisms, also nighttime croaking is part of their breeding pattern. Artificial lights therefor disrupt and interfere with reproduction thus reducing populations.

Artificial Lights Can Lead Baby Sea turtles to their Demise

Sea turtles lay there eggs on the beach at night, when the hachlings emerge from their eggs and make their way to the sea they are guided by the moon light on the horizon.  Artificial light causes them to go the wrong way and millions of hatchlings meet their doom this way every year. Its a difficult journey for them as it is without light pollution.

Artificial Lights have Devastating Effects on Many Bird Species

Night time hunting or migrating birds use the moon and starlight to navigate. Light pollution puts a " glitch " in their naturally built in sat navs causing them to go off course also birds often die colliding with illuminated tall buildings and structures. 
Migrating birds depend on their "natural sat navs" to correctly travel to their summer and winter feeding grounds.However their timing can be off too as the artificial light can make them think they need to set off too early or late missing prime environmental conditions for nesting and feeding.


Ecosystems: Everything is Connected

The power needed to produce artificial light has its on set of consequences on the planet too. Plus the destruction of natural habitat to fuel the process.

Dean Regus talks about dark skies.

Light pollution 

Organizations such as the International Dark Sky Association (IDA) are taking up the cause; approving dark-sky friendly appliances, offering tips to reduce your light-impact, and working with policy-makers to improve light-pollution legislation. 


Here are five ways you can reduce light pollution and help preserve Dark Skies in your area of the world. 

(The following Information has been taken from www.darkskies.com)

Please find out more if you can and spread the word.

1. Use Core Glow stones for all your Outdoor Night Lighting:

Core Glow stones only emit 5-7 candelas of light, and do not 'cast' light as electric lights do. The ambient glow from Core Glow stones is not a source of light pollution, and does not contribute to bright skies at night. Use Core Glow stones to line pathways, steps, and more outdoors instead of bright electric lights. Even better - Core Glow stones do not break and do not require technical expertise to use. Reduce your resource and light pollution impact by choosing Core Glow. 

In fact, Core Glow stones can be used as light pollution indicators. If you are able to see the glow at night, that means you are in an area with low light pollution (lucky you!). If the glow is faint or not visible, that means you are in an area where light pollution is high. Use your Core Glow stones to test your home, yard, and neighbourhood for light pollution hot spots, as well as to find the best Dark Sky spots. 

2. Only purchase IDA Approved light fixtures:

The International Dark Sky Association certifies dark sky friendly light-fixtures that meet their rigorous guidelines. Look for this symbol when you are purchasing new lights: 

The Fixture Seal of Approval provides objective, third-party certification for luminaires that minimize glare, reduce light trespass, and don’t pollute the night sky. You can also help by using energy saving features such as timersmotion sensors, and dimmers; ensuring your light fixtures are shielded so light shines down, not up; and installing lights only when and where they are needed.

From IDA Light Pollution Brochure

3. Talk to your local representatives and support Dark Sky initiatives:

From the IDA website: in 2011 IDA and the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America approved the Model Lighting Ordinance, an outdoor lighting template designed to help municipalities develop outdoor lighting standards that reduce glare, light trespass, and skyglow. Follow the tips on the IDA page to set up policy in your own community, or to support policy that is already in place. 


4. Set an example - Turn your lights off!

Join Core Glow in the easiest way to help reduce light pollution - turn your lights off! Not only does this help reduce light pollution, it also reduces your energy bill and carbon emissions, as well as revealing the beauty of our world in darkness. 

During power outages in cities the beautiful night sky can be seen just as it would be out in nature. Light pollution is an easy fix compared to persistent pollutants! Help darken your little part of the sky by turning off your indoor and outdoor lights in the evening, and using IDA approved lighting or Core Glow stones if nighttime illumination is needed.

Before and during the 2003 Northeast blackout, a massive power outage that affected 55 million people. Photo by of Todd Carlson, from IDA website.

5. Tell your friends, family, and neighbours about light pollution:

The best way to start helping is to spread the word about light pollution is to start talking about it. Do some of your own research, and visit a Dark Sky approved site close to you to see the difference light pollution makes. The best place to start is by watching 'Losing the Dark' a quick introduction into the subject (video below).  A great resource is the IDA website resource page: the most up to date research database on the effects of 'Artificial Light at Night'.



Entering the Interdimensional Portal, photo by Vanessa Anabella @vanessa_annabella_

*Article feature photo: The Milky Way sets over Newport State Park in Wisconsin, U.S. Photo by Denny Moutray. The Newport State Park is an IDA Approved Dark Sky Park.