Lighting Info



About VOLT

Benefit #5: Reduced Urban Sky Glow

Urban Sky Glow is the brightening of the night sky due to manmade lighting.

Summary of the Problem:

Urban Sky Glow is the brightening of the night sky due to manmade lighting. This is what people usually think of when they hear the term "Light Pollution". Urban Sky Glow has led to the degradation of our common natural heritage - The star filled night sky.

Comments on Urban Sky Glow:

Urban Sky Glow is a problem that used to be limited to big metropolitan areas. But today, the problem has reached epidemic proportions. There are only a very few truly dark areas left on the east coast. Certainly here in Northern Virginia the sky is full of misdirected light. And the problem has worsened significantly over the past 5 years. Growth in our area and increased competition between business and even between the new breed of "super neighborhoods" have led to the rapid degradation of the night sky.

The Northern Virginia Astronomy Club reports that their once dark sites in Loudoun and Fauquier Counties are now too bright for more than casual stargazing. Many of their members must travel 200 - 300 miles to West Virginia or North Central Pennsylvania to find dark skies. Many assume that it is still dark in the countryside, but this is just not true anymore. Click here for more on this topic.
Click to see a picture of the night sky unaffected by sky glow.
Urban Sky glow was first noticed by the astronomical community, both professional and amateur, but this is by no means just an astronomical issue. No one appreciates a pallid glow over their community. The star filled night sky is a natural heritage that needs to be restored for us and our children.