• Due to lack of activities, this forum is set to be closed at the end of this month (Aug 31), the forum has been set to read-only mode. Thanks for all your support over the years!

Preserving The Night


...elusive dreamer
Apr 5, 2009
Negative effects of artificial lighting.

Preserving the Night

Artificial lighting casts a long shadow over animal and human health.
Susan Weiner
November / December 2009

Before the lightbulb, people slept beneath inky skies with only the flicker of a candle or torch to hold the darkness at bay. Today we control when we sleep and when we rouse, staying awake late into the night amid domes of artificial light reflected from homes, businesses and streetlamps.

Cities can be seen from space, yet the bright world we’ve created has its downsides. More than simply hamper our view of the stars, artificial light—or light pollution—affects the migration, reproduction and feeding of wildlife, and is suspected of causing some cancers in people. Plants and coral reefs are also affected by artificial light as it disrupts their natural growth cycles.

Bright lights and haze can extend more than 100 miles beyond the borders of an urban area, exposing deer, coyotes, moose, raccoons, bats and other animals to predators and hindering their ability to search for food. Frogs and other wetland inhabitants become disoriented, leading to a decrease in reproduction. Moths and other insects encircle artificial lights, neglecting to reproduce and pollinate, dying of exhaustion or becoming targets for predators.

In North America, 100 million birds die in collisions with lighted structures. Near coastal areas,
marine birds can fly off course to the point where they die of exhaustion. Sea turtle hatchlings, instinctively drawn to the ocean by the reflection of the moon and the stars, crawl towards roads and communities, ultimately dying from dehydration, cars, predators and fatigue.
Complete Article...http://www.energytimes.com/pages/departments/0911/earthmatters0911.html


Active member
May 25, 2009
You've got two things going on here at the same time which makes it difficult to tease out what exactly is happening.
On the one hand we are spending too much time under artificial light and the UVA exposure is processing any vitamin d near the skin surface into suprasterols the body doesn't use so we are all becoming more vitamin D deficient.
Increased UVA exposures and decreased cutaneous Vitamin D(3) levels may be responsible for the increasing incidence of melanoma.

And on the other side of the equation extra light during the evening/night is preventing melatonin secretion so we are ageing prematurely.
Evening exposure to a light-emitting diodes (LED)-backlit computer screen affects circadian physiology and cognitive performance.

F.lux: software to make your life better

Blue light from light-emitting diodes elicits a dose-dependent suppression of melatonin in humans.

If you look into the actions of melatonin you'll find they more or less duplicate the role of vitamin D3. It's no coincidence our skin creates VITAMIN D3 from dawn to dusk and from dusk to dawn our DNA is set to create MELATONIN.
If you want to hang on to your cognitive function you'll make sure you get NATURAL amounts of BOTH and at the appropriate time of day or night.


...elusive dreamer
Apr 5, 2009
Original Poster
Section of Idaho as Dark Sky Preserve

More here. http://www.newser.com/story/253074/state-lands-americas-first-dark-sky-preserve.html

Newser) – A giant chunk of central Idaho with a dazzling night sky has become the nation's first International Dark Sky Reserve, the AP reports. The International Dark-Sky Association designated the 1,400-square-mile Central Idaho Dark Sky Reserve this week.

The sparsely populated area's night skies are so pristine that interstellar dust clouds are visible in the Milky Way. "That such truly dark nighttime environments still exist in the United States is remarkable," says J. Scott Feierabend, executive director of the Arizona-based association, calling the designation a milestone for the group.

Officials say getting the reserve took several decades of work and included efforts from communities on the edges of the reserve to reduce nighttime lighting.

The central Idaho reserve covers some of the most remote and rugged areas in the state and is mostly land managed by the US Forest Service. It contains wilderness areas and the Sawtooth National Recreation Area.

The Forest Service has supported the designation as part of its mandate to preserve natural and scenic qualities. It has reduced light pollution from its buildings, but said mitigation by others in the recreation area would be voluntary.

Opposition to dark sky measures elsewhere in the US has come from the outdoor advertising industry and those against additional government regulations.

Supporters say excess artificial light causes sleeping problems for people and disrupts nocturnal wildlife. (Researchers say light pollution is threatening darkness all over the world.)