Light pollution is not something a whole lot of Americans consider when choosing light sources. Cost and energy efficiency are usually at the top of the list, leaving light pollution at the bottom. City governments had the same priorities throughout history until classic, orange-glow streetlights were replaced with blue-white LED lights.
Effects of LED Streetlights on Light Pollution Levels
Initially, outdoor LED lights were housed in the same ways older, high-pressure sodium lights have been housed for years. Due to the extreme brightness of LED lamps, the light was spilling out around the lamp housing. This caused extreme light pollution and had organizations for dark sky preservation very upset. Blocking light from going directly upward was not enough to reduce pollution from LED lights that were twice as bright as their predecessors.
It looked as if LED street lights would never be a reasonable way to light the night. However, over the years since the initial use of LED street lights, technology has addressed the problems. Experts developed a three-part lighting fixture to focus light rays parallel to one another. These parallel rays ensure the light is directed at the desired area, rather than all throughout the air. This redesign has made LED street lights even less likely to produce light pollution than the lamps that came before them.
Outdoor LED lighting now not only reduces light pollution but also saves users money and reduces energy. Initially, LED street lights reduced power consumption by 40 to 60 percent. That is already a huge jump in energy savings. After the lights were reengineered to reduce light pollution, energy savings jumped another 10 to 50 percent.
Although LED lights can initially be more expensive than high-pressure sodium lamps, the future savings will very quickly make up for the upfront cost. Using LED lamps is good for your pocketbook and for stargazing!
Find the LED Lamp Perfect for Your Needs
At LED Light and Power, we carry all the LED lamps and supplies you’ll need to do your part in reducing light pollution. Trade out old porch lamp bulbs for new, brighter, and more efficient LED lamps. Local stargazers will appreciate your effort and anyone trying to lurk in the darkness will be out of luck!