I remember, as a child (and up until almost reaching adulthood), looking up into the sky many times and seeing a lot of bright stars.
I can remember enjoying it as it was a beautiful sight that I think I appreciated.
On Saturday night, Ewe and I made our way to a wharf near where we live.
I looked up to the sky and saw that it was bright, but there were no stars to see.
The sky was far too bright for the hour it was.
I found this to be incredibly saddening as seeing stars was something I remembered well, but now it seemed to be something that was rare.
In Sydney, when you do see stars, depending on where you are, you will only see a few.
Light pollution is something that has subconsciously become something accepted as normal, despite how abnormal and unnatural it is.
In the city, we’ve conditioned ourselves to accept something that we should be rejecting and working to fight against.
It can have detrimental effects not only to our own health, but also to various animals that operate based on light and dark levels.
Earth Hour encourages people to switch lights off for a one hour period each year.
There are many reasons as to why it’s done (as far as I’m aware, reduction of light pollution is one of them), but I don’t think that once a year is enough.
If more people were to switch off their lights more often and work on encouraging others to do the same, the night sky would gradually appear the way it is meant to again; dark, with numerous stars lighting it up.
There are still plenty of places in the world not affected by light pollution, but there’s nothing to say that it should be different for cities as well.
We shouldn’t have to get out of the cities just to be able to soak in the impressive light show that we already had available to us.
It shouldn’t be an oddity.
Through the years, being able to see the night sky in less populous areas has become part of what has made it so much more appreciable to me.
It is an amazing view that can remind you of how small you really are and how lucky you are to be able to witness such a thing.
I find myself wondering if light pollution will become so abundant that, many years from now, there will be a generation that, when they see stars in the night sky, will consider it some sort of strange phenomenon instead of something they used to see far more often than they do now.
In fiction, when stars go out, it’s (usually) a sign that something very bad is going to happen.
Obviously that’s a very extreme example to use as a comparison, especially without much information provided.
But still, in the cities, the stars are going out.
Regardless of severity, we should consider it a sign.
The time it took to write five-hundred words: 18:04:84
Took longer as I was thinking too much about what I was saying.
I feel this comes across a bit more like scaremongering than anything else; something that was not my intent.
This was written at my desk at work.