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Blinded By Light

It gives me quite a bit of satisfaction to be able to say at a meeting - at the proper time, of course - "As a member of the International Dark Sky Association . . . .". And you know I do belong to that association and I'm proud of it.

They put out a newsletter at least four times a year. Articles hit you all the time. Like the one from the Fraser Valley in British Columbia. Those people are, they say "asking for the moon". They are creating a Dark-Sky Park and they advertise on their sign "a dark-sky preserve". Manitoulin Island is doing the same. Another article tells of a search for a service station that has cut its light level to 10 foot candles or less.

Albuquerque, New Mexico are concerned with the loss of their beautiful skies to careless and illegal lighting practices and "...would like our children to once again see the enchanted dark skies of New Mexico from their own backyards".

Calgary in the next three years are retrofitting their residential streetlights with "fully shielded luminaries and reducing their high pressure sodiums from 200 to 100 watts. Spain, Australia, Chile Bristol, England ... they are all working at it.

This is an organization that encourages good quality outdoor lighting that helps improve visibility at night, saves energy and improves nighttime ambiance while preserving dark skies for all mankind.

We live in a community where our Energy Corporation is encouraging wind power and are asking us to enroll in a Green Power Program. One of the first things they must do is to address the excessive Christmas light program that is sponsored by our utility provider.

To learn more about the International Dark-Sky Association check their web page at www.darksky.org . Maybe you might even join.

Written Tuesday, February 26, 2002 at 10:14 PM

(c) 2000 by Catherine Hennessey. Questions or comments? Email me@catherinehennessey.com

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