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Interesting Documentary About Light Pollution

July 20, 2012; 9:09 AM ET

This blog's main purpose is to share with you an interesting documentary from PBS that you can find by clicking here.

I have talked about this subject before and what a shame! Imagine your children's children going outside at night and not being able to see the wonder of the constellations. Imagine the generation after this not even knowing what stars look like. Think back throughout our history and how important the night sky was to our ancestors. Whether it was guidance on a ship thanks to the North Star or even the socialization that took place sitting around a fire and telling stories about the stories of the formation of constellations and what it means to their culture.

Such a shame that the natural wonder of the night sky may be lost.

I have a bit of personal history with this subject. I was married last fall in Daytona Beach, Fla., and signs were all over the beach about shutting off unnecessary lighting at night in rooms facing the beach. The reason was that the artificial lighting disorients hatchling sea turtles and makes it harder for them to find the ocean. I have heard of migratory birds becoming confused by city lights. So it is not just our personal and historical interests at risk here. Wildlife is being hurt by light pollution.

I have also heard of disruption to our body's personal rhythyms because of the lack of darkness in urban areas at night. So we also have health issues at risk here.

An interesting graphic of light pollution thanks to Wired Science

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About This Blog

Astronomy Blog
The astronomy blog, by Dave Samuhel, discusses stargazing, including how weather will affect viewing conditions of astronomical phenomenon.