Earth Night is an event where people try to reduce artificial outdoor light as much as possible one night a year. This event always takes place on the Friday in September that is closest to the night of the new moon. This is the 4th Earth Night and encourages everyone to turn out your lights from nightfall on Friday night until day break on Saturday in a global effort to bring awareness to light pollution. People will reduce/turn off outdoor lights for a whole night (starting no later than 10 pm local time), taking a stand against the world’s increasing light pollution. Anyone can participate and we hope as many of you as possible reading this decide to turn out the lights for one whole night. Let’s make Ballard dark!
Why is it so important to promote darkness? Well light pollution caused by the unrestrained consumption of artificial light by us humans is steadily increasing. As all the light makes our nights brighter and lighter and thus demonstrably harms the environment, people and nature. It misdirects birds on their migration routes and harms insects in summer decreasing our night pollinators and main food source of many animals. In addition, all the light from our towns and cities dims the starry sky and makes our sleep less restful. Entire ecosystems get out of step because of the amount of light at the wrong time.
There are some really simple ways to join Earth Night and make a difference. Switch off (or at least partially switch off) all light sources that are not essential for safety. For example, shop window / advertising lighting as well as door, house, object, facade and garden lighting. If you can’t/don’t want to switch everything off completely outside, you can at least reduce the amount of light. Simply screw in a weaker lamp or install a motion detector that ends the continuous light. Or align the light better by tilting the spotlight towards the floor (where the light actually belongs). Shielded and/or the use of LED reflector lamps also help here. At least change the color of the light because yellowish light (warm white, “amber”) rather than bluish light ensures a darker night and at the same time fewer dead insects .
Don’t worry, it’s not necessary to sit at home in the dark during Earth Night! It is enough to simply close the blinds, roller blinds or curtains on the windows. This is how the night becomes darker. Be sure to go outside, enjoy the starry sky and the magic of this one very special night, which is as nature intended: naturally dark. And maybe it will become clear that you would like to have such a night more often throughout the entire year and that we actually don’t need so much light at night. Darkness is an ecosystem, enjoy your night!
For more information on Earth Night click here