Carmel lost an invaluable resource by lighting up every corner of the city. It has followed Indiana and other states in general that have lit up the night, with much of that light radiating uselessly into space – with the exception of giving plane passengers something to look at.
The result of all this light pollution has been the loss of dark skies and the ability for us to see or even distinguish the marvels of space, such as the Milky Way. Should you want your children or grandchildren to see space satellites, meteors, the Milky Way, and such astrological wonders you now have to travel far and wide to even get to a suitable viewing area. Not everyone has such an opportunity.
As a photographer, I have traveled the state in search of the Milky Way and have found spots where you can still see it, but not very brightly. In detailed photos you end up seeing more of an orangish light pollution instead. That’s all those lights of the area radiating into space. You go anywhere in Carmel or the surrounding area, and you have virtually no chance of even seeing that marvelous star cluster stretching across our entire sky.
There is now a solution, and many conscientious and responsible cities are taking up the call to use energy saving, dark sky friendly lighting fixtures that don’t radiate all that light up into space. The cost is not that prohibitive and certainly preserves an important resource for our community. The cost of converting the entire city to such fixtures is certainly cheaper than another roundabout. Yet in our urge to build, no one talks about the hidden costs.
I would suggest Dark Sky Preservation provides our community a payback of far greater value than letting our politicians use that money instead to vote themselves a pay raise.
Help let our children see the wonders of space with their own eyes and not just view it through the pages of a book or online photo. If Carmel officials truly want to lead and provide a model city example, this should be a part of that equation.
Richard Bryant, Carmel