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JB80

Why so much LP?

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If you look at any light pollution map of Europe and then take a look at Belgium you will see that it is one of the worst offenders. Why you may ask?

No idea why they do it, but I can give you fair idea why it's so bad and what stargazers here have to contend with.

Driving around today we took a few shots we didn't go all that far just to the shops and a lap of the area.

Now granted some of these lights are kind of covered but I still think it's overkill.

Belgium's highways shine into space - but for how long?

In this first picture I count 16 light poles, note the farmland on either side of the road.

010cjav.jpg

This next one I count 13 on both sides of the street in only a hundred meters or two. It stretches like that behind as well.

070zw.jpg

I get 10 or 12 on this one, at least the corn doesn't seem to mind.

071oz.jpg

Now in these last two I caount at least 21, sure they're low and somewhat covered but really? Again one side of the road is farmland that stretches as far as the eye can see and the other an airpoirt.

030bnt.jpg

029pg.jpg

peopledriveo.jpg

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:icon_salut:

What a waste!

They could chop down 75% of those and everyone could still see perfectly well.

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Agreed.

And I always have wondered about those funny little illuminating things that are on the front of cars. Surely there is a purpose to them?

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Yes, lighting density definitely makes a big difference.

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hmm, similar to my area.

have a looksie around J32 on the M62 at night, that is vile, the council around here went mental with the street lights

there must be some kind of fetish for the things around here but when you try to enquire about the issue (let alone address it) nobody knows who is who.

stihl saw i think

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I'm guessing Belgium must have quite a high electricity bill then.

Just a bit, in the article I linked it mentions...

Cash-strapped Wallonia last year paid out 9.5 million euros for 105 gigawatt-hours of electricity for road lighting -- to produce that amount of electricity a standard nuclear reactor would need to run for about four days.

And that's just Wallonia who spend the less out of the two Belgian regions.

It also annoys that it comes down to money as a reason to reduce LP and not any other common sense reason.

Edited by Pibbles

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HEALTH AND SAFETY clowns at work again.

local councils are afraid of law suits in this litigious society we have become.

to the point that an astronomical society was told recently that they could not host star parties at their prefered site, a local council recreational field,as there was not enough light to ensure that people did not fall over equipment and tripods in the dark, and then duely fitted a sodium light on a nearby building to help them with their stargazing activities.

that is the nonsensical society we live in!!!!

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Why the puzzle? People pay their taxes and want the streets lit.

There are a lot more non-astronomers then astronomers so having a democratic vote is pointless.

Not one person wants their children walking along an unlit busy road beacuse of someone wanting to look through a scope.

Sorry guys, the world does not revolve around astronomy. Going to have to learn to live with it.

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I'd question a parent wanting their children walking along a lit busy road personally. Look at those pics, there is absolutely no reason for anybody let alone children to be wandering around farmlands or highways at night time. These lights are not there for pedestrians they are there by admission for drivers and as was pointed out in the article a sign of propserity. Light pollution isn't just limited to annoying astronomers.

Point is one light can do the same as 5 in situations like these, people may as well just give their money to me as they don't seem to care that it's being wasted.

Edited by Pibbles

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i have to agree with ronin my sister was killed by a van on a unlit road some years ago but sayin that the council in my area have started turnin off lights after midnight on the m2 so thats a start

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I've been to Belgium and they do like their electricity...........even in the middle of nowhere.

Edited by LukeSkywatcher

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That night shot looks like the Singapore Grand Prix track

What a waste

Tangentially related to the topic at hand, but I reckon that for all F1's talk about wanting to be eco-friendly, the 2008-introduced Singapore GP must be the WORST for the environment, just because of all the electricity consumed by those lights. But, of course, it looks cool and gives a better time for the European TV audiences.

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Is it not something to do with keeping their nuclear power plants running overnight? Some chap I met from Belgium said they simply produce too much power at night so they thought it would be clever to use the extra watts for street lights.

Anyways it's easy to spot the border of Belgium from the air at night...

/Jessun

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As a retired street lighting eng, the column spacing on the highways looks absolutely ridiculous and as for lighting the countryside it should be a non starter,

but there again, being Belgium I don`t suppose they have to adhere to the public lighting codes of practice, as in GB, but what a waste of energy, you would think if they had that much surplus it could be sold to people who need it :icon_salut:

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I'm lucky here our council has cut down on lighting ( lights off early lights on later) and some nights you will see every other light off :icon_salut:

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A waste of energy, easily reduce them by say 1 in 4?

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I'm fairly certain you could reduce it by 3 out of every 4 and there would still be adequate lighting.

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