How can light pollution be reduced or prevented?
Unlike other pollution matters, light pollution has not been considered as a major issue until recently. The good news is that, the solutions that experts suggest are not as complex and difficult as those of air and water pollution. Light pollution can be significantly reduced by some engineering and structural design policies and considerations. Besides that, education will be needed to get the message across and get people more informed about the issue and take the step of becoming part of the solution.
Here are a few things governments and engineers can do:
Engineers must invest and use new lighting technology that uses the full cut-off concept. This way, lights escaping upwards from large commercial places, stadiums, theaters and public places will be reduced. For example about 30% of road light fittings in the UK have reached their lifespan and need changing. This is a good time to engage new technology to ensure that the replaced fittings will not cause too much light pollution (Source: Artificial Light in the Environment Report, UK : ISBN: 9780108508547)
Government policies on the use of lights must be stepped in a way that forces consumers to buy more energy-reduced light (and also not too much bright lights). These policies must be enforced.
Research shows that too much lights does not necessarily improve visibility. This means that smart choices can be made to improve visibility in the night without splashing too much light into the sky.
Individuals must also begin to install motion sensor-lights and bulbs in their homes, so that they are not kept on all night. Garden and landscape lights must be used effectively and should not be too bright to bother others.
It is important that education of light pollution and its consequences are stepped up and taught in all schools, just as water, land and air pollution.