Submitted by AJ Cann on Mon, 30/08/2021 - 08:24

Artificial light has been directly linked to declines in insect populations. Here's what YOU can do to help. More...

It is now well documented that insect populations are in steep decline. This is likely to have severe ecological consequences. There are many causes, including habitat loss and degradation, pesticide and herbicide use, climate change, and light pollution. The significance of light pollution was reinforced in a new scientific article published last week. Now the insect conservation charity Buglife has published a guide to what you can do to work towards being part of the solution

Only add light where and when you really need to
Using external lights to move around your garden and in and out of the house safely makes sense. Leaving them on all night does not. Make sure to turn them off or use a sensor to help limit your use. This will not only help reduce light pollution but also lower your energy consumption. 

Use only the brightest light you need
There is now a huge range of choices when it comes to lighting, but you don’t need "daylight bright" light at night. Choose "warmer" lights, this reduces the amount of blue-violet light being emitted, which is considered more harmful to invertebrates and reflects light upwards adding to skyglow.

Shield your lights
Directing your lights to light up only the places you need can make a huge difference. Adding shields to existing lights can help stop casting light into unwanted places such as trees, hedges and even up into the night sky. Interior lighting also casts out into the outside world if curtains and blinds aren’t shut. Make sure you shut your curtains when you put the lights on inside.

Share the message of reducing light pollution
Reducing your light pollution is a great step, but we need everyone to do their bit to help. Sharing the messages about the impacts of light pollution with friends, family and neighbours will help generate the collective effort we need.

Contact your elected officials
Raising the issue of light pollution with your parish or local councillors is a great next step and can help implement local action plans on lighting and reduce light pollution in your area. MPs can help increase awareness of light pollution in Parliament and help us to get a national target on reducing light pollution.