Whilst some lighting at night is important for our safety, light pollution can also be damaging to us and our natural environment. Light spill from security lights, street lights and floodlights break into the darkness and can spread for miles creating a veil of light across the night sky. It can spill into homes disrupting people’s sleep, it impacts on wildlife and it increases our carbon emissions.
Devon LNP partners declared the 31st October as Devon Dark Skies Day. This included a day time workshop for ecological consultants (run by Devon Wildlife Trust, Professor Fiona Mathews and Devon County Council) and an evening event for the public at County Hall (see below). Continue to get involved in the conversation on Social Media.
Evening event: The impacts of night lighting on humans and wildlife
This event was aimed at anyone interested in how night time lighting impacts on us and wildlife. We aimed to share the growing body of research and practical experience surrounding night time lighting, in relation to both wildlife and people. We explored opportunities to determine how we can limit the impact of artificial lighting without sacrificing the key benefits.
Nocturnal Landscapes for wildlife – moths, glow-worms and other things – Dr Adrian Spalding, Spalding Associates
Devon’s Dark Skies and tranquillity – Mel Croll, Landscape Specialist, Devon County Council & Peter Finch, Devon CPRE
Exmoor Dark Skies Reserve – Dan James, Exmoor National Park Authority
Exmoor Dark Skies Festival
Exmoor National Park is home to some of the darkest skies in the country so it’s a great place to gaze at the stars. For thousands of years, humans have looked up at the night sky and wondered at what they saw. But the dark skies that were the night time backdrop for the vast majority of human history are for many of us now a rare sight. Our night times are filled with the orange glow of street lighting and we are all more likely to be looking at a television or a smartphone than gazing at the stars.
Exmoor Dark Skies Festival has been created to bring back that sense of wonder.