Light Pollution

We had the following email over the weekend from someone who lives near Asda:

From my house, I can see 9 streetlights, all within a distance of 15 yards from my property. On top of this the ASDA service yard has its service yard lights on all night, every night.

My concerns here are thus:

1. Why are there so many street lights in this development?

2. Why does the ASDA store need its yard lights on all night? It’s not like they are receiving deliveries!

3. Why can the Leisure Centre not turn its carpark lights off when the centre closes, instead of (approx) 2 hours later?

4. In an age when councils and government are coming up with initiatives to force the population to think green, why is it that the carbon footprint and light pollution produced by an abundance of street lighting is not being considered?

The over use of street lighting in new developments has increased in recent years (the last development I lived in had 2 street lights for each of the 24 houses and each garage had an external light fitted with a dusk to dawn sensor) , yet no council (that I know off) seems to have taken on board, that extra lights require extra power, extra power requires more output from power stations, this then ultimately results in a contribution to the global warming problem.

The council are putting pressure on us to recycle, turn off lights and TVs when not in use etc, but who exactly is putting pressure on the council and businesses to do the same thing?

Any advice or information on the councils stance on cutting local carbon emissions, or who I can contact to get a point across would be appreciated.

We’ll be raising these points with the district council, but does anyone else have any thoughts on this?

Meanwhile, the campaign for Dark Skies have a webpage here (and Castle Point Astronomy Club have ttheir website here.)

  • I fully agree with the comments raised, there is far too much street light illumination and therefore energy unnecessary being used.

    In addition to the issues already mentioned I would like to point out that the Leisure Centre have kept the lights on in the Skateboard Park several times recently throughout the night ( possibly linked to school holidays last week-or possibly a coincidence ). The Skateboard Park is situated at the rear and side of the Leisure Centre. The lights are very bright, keeping them on costs money, ultimately billed to the tax payer, and the illumination easily pollutes the night’s sky. Furthermore, being a local resident (the park overlooks half a dozen properties), it has promoted noise into the night way past 11pm. I have yet to bring it to the attention of Leisure Centre staff.

    Secondly the lights at St Nicholas’ Church of England Primary School also in Priory Chase are kept on all night long every night. They are very very bright security type lights that need not be on at all. Perhaps security sensors are more appropriate.

  • The car park lights at the School are now off every night I understand. Since they have been turned off it has encouraged youths to hang around inside the school premises late at night.

    Some damage has also been caused by these youths.

    Streetlights are a deterrent to such behaviour and, if they are off, the CCTV cameras cannot see who or what is causing problems.

    The streetlights at the end of Priory Chase are not yet working and there are low light level motion sensor lights at the school main entrance.

  • I can understand the necessity of lighting outside of buildings where youths are likely to congregate and potentially cause damage, if lighting minimises then then great, although perhaps the school could look into installing lights that do not shine beyond the horizon, thus minimising light pollution.

    However, I do not see why I need to have almost a dozen streetlights within visual site of my house (three of which are along my boundary and outside every bedroom window).

    The level of light pollution in Priory Chase/Temple Way is excessive and needs to be addressed.

  • I haven’t checked which lights are the blindingly bright ones. I’m not sure if they are the car park ones or not. But they are still very much on each night.
    Kids were in the school two nights ago til midnight and the lights were all on. Lets hope once the street lights at the bottom of Priory Chase come on the school will do something about the lights and come up with a sollution to keeeping kids out.

    Corey, the council should be doing everything in thier power to reduce electricity output (carbon footprint etc) therefore if there are too many street lights surely they need to take action.

  • David

    Could you please contact the Police if you see anyone on school premises late at night? Alternatively, a call to Carol Bright – the Headteacher – on the following morning may well be appreciated.