What Is Light Pollution?

Light Pollution - What Is Light Pollution?

Have you ever heard that “the city never sleeps”? Nowadays it’s truer than ever.

Since the invention of the lightbulb, artificial lighting has become commonplace in the day-to-day functioning of human beings.
Due to the rapid, large-scale industrialization of everyday life the phrase ‘the city never sleeps’ has never been truer.

Once upon a time, the night sky was so clear, millions of stars were visible to the naked eye. However, today this rarely happens. Do you want to know what is light pollution? How it impacts on the environment? Then read on!

To start with, What Is Light Pollution?

Light pollution is the excessive and invasive use of artificial lighting by human beings, especially in large cities, which disrupts the natural spectrum of light in the environment.

One of its results is Skyglow, that is to say, the partial or full obstruction of the visibility of the natural night sky, which is often observed over large metropolitan cities.

SkyGlow - What Is Light Pollution?

The colour of the night sky over cities slowly brightens due to the use of excessive artificial lighting and turns from black to orange or red. This phenomenon is common in the big cities around the world.

These are the effects of light pollution:

  • excessive energy consumption;
  • affects the circadian rhythms of people living in large cities,
  • affects the sleeping, eating and migration cycles of the animals and birds dwelling in and around the area,
  • stars and other natural phenomena in the night sky become difficult to observe affecting scientific studies such as astronomy and Meteorology.

Light Pollution Sunmaster - What Is Light Pollution?

Glare is another type of light pollution.
As its name may somewhat evoke, Glare results from very bright light that human eyes are not accustomed to. It effects?

  • Visual discomfort and temporary or permanently damaged eyesight;
  • It floods and blinds the field of vision so it is especially dangerous when driving.
Glare Sunmaster - What Is Light Pollution?

Light clutter - What Is Light Pollution?

Here is another type of light pollution: Light-clutter, a phenomenon caused by several sources of light in areas such as billboards, skylights, streetlights and headlights.
It’s effects:

  • Unsafe environments while driving and flying;
  • Interference with traffic lights or navigation signals;
  • Confusion and disorientation for drivers and pilot.

Then there is the Light Trespass or Light Spill: private properties are subjected to unwanted and disturbing light from foreign sources such as headlights from a highway.
Here are the effects:

  • interrupting your day to day activities;
  • sleep deprivation.
Light trespass Sunmaster - What Is Light Pollution?

Uplight Fenomenon Sunmaster - What Is Light Pollution?

Finally, we have Uplight i.e. light that is directed towards the sky (such as strobe lights or lights used to illuminate statues and monuments).

  • It causes problems for astronomers and stargazers since it interferes with the natural light of the night sky;
  • it’s also a waste of energy since the light simply dissipates into space.

What have we learned from this article? That light pollution is a major contemporary issue and it needs to be addressed in order to conserve energy resources and minimize its effects on people and the environment.