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Reclaiming the Night Sky

Excess light doesn’t make you safer and it’s bad for your health. These images show over lighting and some measures taken to reduce it.

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Much of the world’s lighting represents wasted energy that shines directly upward into space as seen in this composite satellite image. (NASA)
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Much of the world’s lighting represents wasted energy that shines directly upward into space as seen in this composite satellite image. (NASA)

Chicago at night. In an average year the U.S. uses 120 terawatt-hours of energy, enough power to meet New York City’s total electricity needs for two years.
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Chicago at night. In an average year the U.S. uses 120 terawatt-hours of energy, enough power to meet New York City’s total electricity needs for two years.

Glare from poorly shielded outdoor lighting degrades your vision by decreasing contrast. (Jim Richardson)
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Glare from poorly shielded outdoor lighting degrades your vision by decreasing contrast. (Jim Richardson)

Lamps decorate a building in Washington, DC, sending the light skyward. (Jim Dougherty, International Dark Sky Association)
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Lamps decorate a building in Washington, DC, sending the light skyward. (Jim Dougherty, International Dark Sky Association)

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