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How to minimise light pollution

Outdoor lighting has many specific requirements, from making people feel safe at night to creating stunning visual displays. But it is the responsibility of those creating urban luminaires and lighting designs to ensure that light pollution is kept to a minimum in external areas.

Studies from 2016 suggest that more than 99% of the US and European population live under light polluted skies, a figure which has increased significantly since a previous study in 2001.

While this can be considered a nuisance for residents and may impact on stargazers, it creates severe problems for the local wildlife.

Birds, bats, insects and a menagerie of other species are all seriously affected by luminaires that do not consider their natural habits.

The key way to get around this is to design fittings that reduce upwards illumination. For example, Tamlite offers the TAURUS exterior bulkhead, geared towards minimising ULOR (upward light output ratio), in fact keeping it as low as 2%. Through fittings like this, light is pushed only where it needs to be, downwardly illuminating the ground to ensure people can see what they are doing without upward light pollution.

There a number of ways to reduce the effects of light pollution

While this is a radical example, it demonstrates the importance of getting the lighting design right in outdoor spaces to ensure the right environment for both humans and the local ecology.

Talk to us about our range of urban lighting offering, and how we can deliver the right solution for your site.