weather permitting including March 8, Apr.5, May 3, Jun.7, Jul.19, Aug.2 etc.
Plans for Internatio
nal Dark Sky Week, 20-26 April, 2014
April (all): Astronomers Without Borders Global Astronomy Month & World at
Night (TWAN) 5th International Earth & Sky Photo contest
April 20: World Night in Defence of Starlight, the annual celebration of the
Declaration in Defence of the Night Sky and the Right to Starlight
April 20: Start of GLOBE at Night's April campaign
Feb 2014 – astronomy talk by Dr.Bob at Lakewood Country Club
breakfast meeting of the Rotary Club,
mini-meeting of the Colorado section of IDA: Dr. Bob, Leslie Clark & Rick
codes/regulations in your area:
– communications with colorado.ida AT gmail.com
Nancy Emerson fnemerson AT comcast.net - Feb 11
colorado.ida AT gmail.com, Amee AT darksky.og
I am the
IDA Chapter Leader for Santa Barbara County, CA. We recently
visited the new Chimney Rock National Monument near Pagosa Springs.
Based on the name, I was not sure what to expect but discovered it
was an archeoastronomy site. It is located in a very dark part of
Colorado and the visitor area looks like it is dark sky compliant,
too. While there I talked with the volunteer in the very small
visitors center and then with our volunteer tour guide. I
mentioned to both of them the IDA Dark Sky Park awards and suggested
they apply. They were a bit hesitant and explained that it was
the volunteers who had pushed through the site's designation as a
national monument in 2012. Now 18 of the volunteers are the
interpretative "staff" from May-September (and beyond for
schools wanting tours) so they are feeling overwhelmed with work. I
learned that the change to a monument has not yet been accompanied by
additional funds so the US Forest Service is operating it on a
shoestring with the volunteers also continuing to do significant
fundraising. As you can imagine, I am very impressed by these
volunteers as well as this amazing monument. It is such a unique
site that it would be a jewel in IDA's recognized parks. I am
wondering if you might be able, over time, to work with them on an
application. Please visit the monument's website, if you have not
already visited the monument itself, to learn why I found it so
unusual. (www.fs.usda.gov/detail/sanjuan/specialplaces/ and
Hello Nancy, Amee:
Thanks for the contact about Chimney
Rock and its potential as a Dark Sky heritage site. The loosely
organized Colorado section indeed may have members in the Four
Corners area who could personally lobby with USFS and others toward
that goal. If Amee could share with me a current membership
roster, we could share your suggestion and enlist the extra help,
along with what I can do from the distance of Denver to Chimney
Rock. Perhaps a conference call would be a useful next step as
--Dr.Bob Stencel, Denver Univ Astronomy
Coordinator, Colorado section IDA
Lockaby wrote: I am in the North Denver area. There are so many
street lamps and company signs, and the football stadium lit up all
the time, that it seems redundant to use headlights
when driving at night.
Are there any proposals to address the
night lights in Denver?
Reply: Hi Triana. Metro Denver
has criminally excessive amounts of badly done lighting that produces
glare, trespass and skyglow. Denver city has enacted some
progressive lighting regulations, but those have extensive exemptions
for businesses – Denver building code details start at
Other towns in metro Denver have
assorted building code requirements – see
You might call your city planning
department and ask what can be done about wasteful lighting practices
in your area, and see what might be next steps. Key to it all is
educating anyone who will listen that we can be smarter about how we
use nighttime lighting. Hope this helps.
IDA newsletters, press releases, etc: Join IDA!
WE **CAN** REDUCE
LIGHT POLLUTION, LIGHT TRESPASS AND GLARE, AND AGAIN SEE THE
MILKY WAY EVEN FROM Metro DENVER!
refers to wasteful and excessive electric lighting that blocks our
view of the night sky.
and GLARE refer to unwanted and harmful lighting.
During 2001, the
Colorado Legislature agreed and modified state law to address these
issues: SECTION 2, ARTICLE 82 OF TITLE 24, COLORADO REVISED STATUES
IS AMENDED BY THE ADDITION OF A NEW PART TO READ: PART 9, OUTDOOR
NOT AGAINST SAFETY, but are very worried about destruction of the
night sky by lighting that shines uselessly into the sky, wasting
money and depriving everyone of their cosmic birthright, not to
mention causing inferior sleep and melatonin disruption. Badly aimed
light also produces trespass nuisance, and disabling glare --
especially for older people.
solution also saves money: add a shield on top of new lighting, to
direct all of the light toward the ground where it is needed.
Also, the use of
motion sensors and timers reduce the cost of lighting to only when it
is really needed.
2005 Dec: Pueblo
County adopts stricter lighting regs. Link:
2005 Nov: Arvada City adopts new lighting code language,
2005 Sept. Regional IDA workshop, Yellowstone Nat
2004 Sept. 17 WORKSHOP, Frisco, Colorado:
The vanishing Colorado night sky, Robert Stencel;
Practical solutions for light pollution, Nancy Clanton; Crime
prevention through environmental design, John Minor; Lighting
Ordinance process case study, Joani Matranga & Jill Peterson
as well as the
composite of EARTH
AT NIGHT from space (dmsp):
and how to
contact your elected state
reps here in Colorado:
News about growth
and energy issues:
Page 1 double headlines
on growth and energy, check archives for Dec.21,2000.
A few terms
defined, from the Dark Sky Association homepages:
GLARE: The 8th
edition of the IESNA Lighting Handbook (1993) defines glare as the
sensation produced by luminance within the visual field that is
sufficiently greater than the luminance to which the eyes are adapted
to cause annoyance, discomfort or loss of visual performance and
visibility. It stands to reason, then, that any good outdoor lighting
design will minimize glare. If the light source itself is more
apparent than what it is illuminating, then you have bad lighting.
Light TRESPASS is
light that is distributed where it is not wanted or needed.
Streetlighting, for example, should light streets and sidewalks, not
shine into second floor bedroom windows or illuminate rooftops. Also
known as spill light, light trespass occurs whenever light shines
beyond the intended target and onto adjacent properties.
UPLIGHT is, in
the truest sense of the word, wasted light. Light that goes directly
up into the night sky is "lost in space" and serves no
useful purpose. Uplight is the bane of astronomers and the occasional
stargazer because atmospheric scattering artificially brightens the
night sky, making distant celestial light sources difficult or
impossible to see. Uplight often results from light fixtures which
also produce glare and light trespass.
And from NEMA:
FULL CUTOFF fixtures are those that allow "no light at or above
a horizontal plane located at the bottom of the luminaire" (lamp
Stencel with questions. Visit the DU Observatories: Chamberlin
Keywords: light pollution,
glare, trespass, melatonin, astronomy, astrophysics, astronomy,
astrophysics, observatory, infrared, telescopes, universe, planets,
stars, comets, Denver ...
information, visit the International Dark Sky Association homepage at