In the past, people used to look up at the stars and feel a sense of wonder. Now, we can barely see them due to light pollution. Modern streetlights are one of the main culprits. These lights are so bright that they wash out the night sky, making it difficult to see the stars. And it’s not just the stars that are affected. This light pollution can also disrupt the natural rhythms of animals and plants. There’s no denying that light pollution is a growing problem in our world. With more and more artificial light sources popping up, our night skies are becoming increasingly brighter. And while this may not seem like a big deal at first, light pollution can have some pretty serious consequences. For one, light pollution can disrupt ecosystems. By artificially brightening the night sky, we’re disrupting the natural light cycle that many animals rely on. This can throw off their mating and feeding patterns, and ultimately have a negative impact on their populations.
Let us understand the effect of light pollution in depth –
There were days when the night sky used to be full of stars and everyone used to enjoy those glittery skies, this is the act which is the sole reason for survival on this planet and helped us in exploring the different world, aided us in sailing across the oceans but this was about hundreds of years before when the entire globe was able to enjoy these starry nights, talking about 21st century, 95% of the population can’t see the milk way from their residence.
According to the data, the child who was born 18 years ago was able to see 250+ stars and now only 100 stars would be visible. This reduction in the number of stars shows how worst the light pollution is becoming. The data includes 50,000 naked-eye observations made by volunteers between 2011 and 2022. The rate of light pollution incremented was expected to be around 2% but the actual data shows that it’s worsening by 10% every year and this is all due to the transition from sodium lamps to LEDs which means blue light scatter more easily in the sky and increase the light pollution than any other lamps plus our eyes are more sensitive to blue eyes, hence adding it more skyglow.
As per the reports, light pollution was expected to double in 40 years but it has reduced to 8 years. The data is giving a warning sign to us to make us aware of the danger coming shortly and we shall take every possible precaution to at least slow it down if not stop it.
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Light pollution can also impact our health. Studies have shown that exposure to artificial light at night can disrupt our natural sleep patterns, which can lead to fatigue and other health problems. So what can we do about light pollution? For starters, we can be more mindful about where and when we use artificial light. We can also support efforts to reduce light pollution, such as by advocating for stricter light pollution controls. But perhaps the best thing we can do is simply appreciate the darkness. Make an effort to experience a truly dark night sky, free from light pollution. It’s an incredible experience that everyone should have at least once.