Use warmer LEDs to reduce light pollution

Use warmer LEDs to reduce light pollution

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Petition to
United Nations and

Why this petition matters

Started by Billy Jeremijenko

To build context for why light pollution is such a critical problem, I want to share a story about the first time I saw the Milky Way, or as I like to call it: The Great Sky River. Looking at it, you get this feeling that you're part of something much larger than yourself. It's a deeply spiritual experience, because the night sky connects us to every ancestor across the chasm of deep time. It's the most amazingly beautiful thing I've ever seen, and almost everyone who sees its full majesty has a similar experience.

Tragically, light pollution severs our fundamental connection with the night sky. The statistics are dire: The Milky Way is invisible to 60% of America, 80% of Europe, and more than a third of Earth's land surface. Following a blackout in Los Angeles, hysteria ensued when the citizens finally saw the Milky Way, but didn't know what it was.

You could, very reasonably, point out that we need our lights, and it's ridiculous to propose reducing light pollution. You would be mostly right, if physics did not provide a workaround: Blue light scatters significantly in the atmosphere, while red light does not. By transitioning to warmer LEDs, we can dramatically reduce light pollution. The movement goes beyond the night sky. Blue light in nighttime hours causes ecological collapse, and may contribute to cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity in humans.

Now just imagine a world where The Great Sky River flows above a deep red cityscape, juxtaposed against vibrant fields of stars. Such a world sounds far from reality, but we can create it now. We have an opportunity to transition to warmer nighttime lighting, reconnecting ourselves with the sky.

Ad Astra,

58 have signed. Let’s get to 100!