Make New Castles' skies dark.

Make New Castles' skies dark.

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Louie Chaplin started this petition to New Castle City Council

I hope everyone reads this. I presented this to the city council last night. Also, please call the mayor's office and let them know if you have a light that shines into your home, that you don't like. They need to know that this is a problem that know one has talked about.

I recently became a dark sky advocate with the international dark sky association. It's an arizona based non profit that not only locates dark sky preserves, but also works towards protecting the night sky through outreach, education and public policy. I'm also a pound resident of this great community.

Would vincent van gogh have been able to paint "the starry night" if he lived in new castle today? Or even Rémy France where he spent several years and created his most amazing works of art?

We have a great responsibility to the ecosystem, and the people of this town giving everyone and everything the best quality of life we can. Uncle ben said to peter parker "with great power comes great responsibility". What power, and responsibility am I talking about today? Light pollution.

Light is a very powerful thing. It can disrupt everything from insects, birds and our great people in this community. Ranging from trees not shedding there leaves at the correct time, to people not getting the best night's sleep they can.

There's a straight forward resolution to this problem. I have spoken to fellow dark sky advocates that set up beverly shores indiana, and to duke energy about options that are available. There are two options that were discussed. First being high pressure sodium light shields, and the other being shielded led. Both are available. Led are generally seen as bright lights, so how would this would solve the light pollution problem. Darksky.org certifies 3000kelvin led and still be a dark sky certified city. The recommendation is 2200 kelvin shielded. Duke quoted 16-36$/light to shield it, and are currently doing led retrofits. The price wasn't clear, but sounded free.

I don't want all the lights gone, I'm asking how to get the lights dimmer and shielded so that they are only lighting up the sidewalks/roads where the focus should be. There are some lights in my opinion that could be shut off at specific times, or done away with all together. Example would be limiting the number of used lights in some residential areas.

With led, less lumens and some off completely could save this town some money. This would also create potential revenue if we can get certified as a dark sky city. This would open the town up to astro tourism. Which, is expected to be a 1 billion dollar a year industry over the next 10 years. It would also be a new way to teach children about space. Being able to see what they are learning about would be such an amazing benefit. Would you rather look at a photo of your interest, or see it in real life?
(At this point, I passed around some photos. I'll share a few. All photos were taken from my front/back yard. They were all stacked and edited by me. Photos include "worm super moon" above a n.c church. Pink super moon from my back yard. M42, m42 and orions belt. M42 the belt and a little light scape on a tree)

For all of human history we have been able to look at the sky for inspiration and wonder. Great philosophers/astronomers like plato, aristotle and corernicus. Artists like van gogh. Astromers like galileo galilei who discovered the 4 biggest moons of jupiter (know as the galilean moons) and cassini discovering the ring division of saturn have all looked at the sky. They changed human history once before. In there name, can we work to change it again.

I have recently ventured into visual observation of the cosmos with my personal telescope, as well as starting astrophotography. Both of these are made more difficult by the bright lights. Take the lights on my street. They bathethe front of my home and yard in light. This includes 3 bedrooms with west facing windows. I get better sleep in my semi because it has black out curtains. That's pretty sad. My goal in becoming an advocate was to help bring the joy, wonder, inspiration, mystery and education of space to the residents both young and old, of this great community. This would improve the quality of life for everyone. Ask yourself how much better you feel after a truly restful night's sleep.

I started off with a question about van gogh, so let's circle back to that for a moment. New castle is a bortle 5 (I had the wrong info for paper, I'm sorry) on the light pollution scale. Kennard is a 4and indy is a 8/9! Today Rémy France is also a 9. You can see these numbers yourself on the clear outside app on your phone. With numbers that high how would van gogh have known what the starry night looked like? I think it would be pretty safe to say that he would not have had such an amazing view to create such an amazing work of art.

Myself and some other residents would like to see the light situation change to improve the quality of life, and to be able to see the bright stars shine alot brighter.

In his speech "A Strenuous Life" teddy roosevelt said "Dare Mighty Things". JPL that lands rovers on mars has adopted this as there motto. I ask that New Castle and the council adopt the same motto. DO mighty things, make new castle a dark sky, better our ecosystem, give our people a better quality of life.

Thank you for your time this evening and the opportunity to ask, if WE DARE to do mighty things?

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