'Moment of darkness': Tuesday is the darkest day for humanity in 2022
It will be daytime in North America, but more than 85% of people on Earth will be in complete darkness for a fleeting moment on Dec. 6.
Twilight colors the evening sky as a woman walks near a tree along the Eastern Promenade overlooking Casco Bay in Portland, Maine on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)
The world's population reached 8 billion in mid-November, and for a fleeting moment on Tuesday, roughly 6.88 billion people will be in darkness.
At 2:56 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Dec. 6, roughly 86% of the global population will be experiencing darkness, according to TimeAndDate. At this precise moment, it will be nighttime across all of Europe, Africa and virtually all of Asia, while the rest of the world, including the United States, will be experiencing daylight.
Nighttime is defined as when the sun is at least 18 degrees below the horizon, or a little bigger than a pinky and index finger extended at arm's length. If the sun has set but it is not 18 degrees below the horizon, it is twilight.
TimeAndDate added that Dec. 21 and Dec. 27 are runners-up for the world's darkest day, but during the 'moment of darkness' on those days, roughly 15 million more people will be experiencing sunlight compared to the event at 2:56 p.m. EST on Dec. 6.
The moment of darkness comes nearly two weeks before the solstice, which marks the beginning of astronomical winter in the Northern Hemisphere. This year, the solstice occurs on Dec. 21 at 4:48 p.m. EST, and AccuWeather forecasters are predicting the weather across the United States this winter to be different than what unfolded last winter.
Tuesday's moment of darkness comes nearly five months after the brightest day of 2022 when roughly 99% of the world's population experienced sunlight simultaneously. This moment took place at 7:15 a.m. EST on July 8.
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