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Come and Enjoy……….In light? March 18, 2009

Posted by linta in Proof.
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light-pollution-the-us

Light Pollution and the U.S.

 

 

The city of entertainment calls you: “Come on, let’s enjoy! In this bright night, we can find new heavens.” But you are like: ” No, Wait! ‘The bright night’? The artificial day, isn’t it?” (I expect you to say this!) Perhaps, the thing that makes Las Vegas really special will be the ‘artificial day’. The City of Entertainment has become the City of Light Pollution too. Are you totally amused by the enjoyment offered by the city? Then, take a look around. How many artificial lamps are there?

It is not only about Las Vegas. Most of the U.S. cities are artificially lit. An article published in the New York Times points out: “The neon glow from Las Vegas and its fast-growing bedroom communities are stealing stars from us.”
It is as though more industrialization means more light pollution. The situation in New York is not different at all. If you google the word light pollution, the country that appears most frequently in the results will be the U.S.  Take a look at the map that shows how the intensity of light pollution increased over the past decades and how it will be in 20 years.

source: http://www.lightpollution.org.uk/images/us_growth%20copiaLPweb.jpg

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A Global Overview March 16, 2009

Posted by linta in Proof.
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 People often say that among the prominent weaknesses of human mind, the “seeing is believing” feature is the most prominent one. But, at least in the case of light pollution, it is not the same. Though the proof is right in front of our eyes, we do not notice it. This time we can analyse such an obvious proof that we have been given by scientists recently. The Globe at Night is a program conducted under the auspices of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific(ASP) every year starting 2006. The report of the third study, which was conducted in 2008, has been published. The study was based on 6,838 measurements of night-sky brightness across the globe. The below image sort of summarizes the result.

 The intensity of light pollution across the globe

You may be wondering now how they measured light pollution. Well, they measure light pollution on the basis of the limiting magnitude value which shows the intensity of light in one place. In the above map, there are seven categories- limiting magnitude 1 to 7. A magnitude of 1 (bright yellow) shows high light pollution and that of 7 indicates almost no or less light pollution. If you look at the map, you can see how severe light pollution is in the U.S. and Europe. Though the number of spots are less in our continent compared to others, don’t be so relieved. It doesn’t mean that light pollution is absent in our place, it is here. But it is matter of relief that we can still control it by prompt action.

Source: http://www.noao.edu/outreach/press/pr08/images/gan-2008-map-sm.jpg