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Some studies suggest a link between exposure to light at night, such as working the night shift, to some types of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. That’s not proof that nighttime light exposure causes these conditions; nor is it clear why it could be bad for us. But we do know that exposure to light suppresses the secretion of melatonin, a hormone that influences circadian rhythms, and there’s some experimental evidence (it’s very preliminary) that lower melatonin levels might explain the association with cancer. What all definitions have in common—either explicitly or implicitly—is the goal of establishing a base upon which the negative effects of artificial nighttime illumination can be categorized. Toward this end, Gallaway’s definition opens us to the broader range of concerns embodied by the contemporary usage of the term—light pollution is not meant to condemn nighttime lighting as a whole, but rather specific uses and outputs of artificial lighting. These negative or undesired aspects of nighttime lighting can be subdivided into four categories: skyglow, glare, light trespass, and clutter.66. These four categories of light pollution are used (although with slightly different terms) by the International Dark-Sky Association, and cited elsewhere as well (e.g. Morgan-Taylor, 2014 Morgan-Taylor, M. (2014). Regulating light pollution in Europe: Legal challenges and ways forward. In J. Meier, U. Hasenöhrl, K. Krause, & M. Pottharst (Eds.), Urban lighting, light pollution and society (pp. 159–176). New York, NY: Taylor & Francis. [Google Scholar]). As such, I am accepting these as the standard causes of light pollution.View all notes Skyglow is light sent upward (directly or reflected) and scattered in the atmosphere, causing artificial ambient brightness and decreasing stellar visibility (Mizon, 2012 Mizon, B. (2012). Light pollution: Responses and remedies (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Springer.10.1007/978-1-4614-3822-9[Crossref] [Google Scholar]). This is the orange haze often seen above cities, and the largest burden for astronomy. It has also arguably been the dominant focus of efforts to quantify light pollution, as some landmark studies rely on satellite imagery (e.g. Cinzano, Falchi, & Elvidge, 2001 Cinzano, P., Falchi, F., & Elvidge, C. D. (2001). The first world Atlas of the artificial night sky brightness. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 328, 689–707.10.1046/j.1365-8711.2001.04882.x[Crossref], [Web of Science ®] [Google Scholar]). The other three forms of light pollution are more commonly experienced hinderences in daily life: glare occurs when excessive brightness reduces visibility (e.g. a floodlight at eye level), light trespass is unwanted or unintended light (e.g. light shining into your bedroom window at night), and clutter is caused by over-illuminated clusters of light sources (e.g. signage and advertising) (IDA, 2014 IDA. (2014). International Dark-Sky Association. International Dark-Sky Association. Retrieved 15 January, 2015, from https://darksky.org/ [Google Scholar]; Morgan-Taylor, 2014 Morgan-Taylor, M. (2014). Regulating light pollution in Europe: Legal challenges and ways forward. In J. Meier, U. Hasenöhrl, K. Krause, & M. Pottharst (Eds.), Urban lighting, light pollution and society (pp. 159–176). New York, NY: Taylor & Francis. [Google Scholar]). If the street light is on the M4, A470 or A465 (Heads of the Valleys road) please contact Traffic Wales on 0845 602 6020. Like light waves, water waves emerging from two sources interferes in the space surrounding the sources to produce a pattern of nodes and antinodes lying along lines. The diagram at the right represents the interference pattern created by two water waves. The waves were created by two objects bobbing up and down in phase at the same frequency. Point P on the pattern is a distance of 34.0 cm from S1 and 23.8 cm from S2. Determine the wavelength (in cm) of the water waves. Apart from emitting light, the sky also scatters incoming light, primarily from distant stars and the Milky Way, but also the zodiacal light, sunlight that is reflected and backscattered from interplanetary dust particles. One example of a lighting plan assessment can be seen in a report originally commissioned by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister in the United Kingdom, and now available through the Department for Communities and Local Government.[97] The report details a plan to be implemented throughout the UK, for designing lighting schemes in the countryside, with a particular focus on preserving the environment. If you notice a street light that is not operating properly, and it is not due to an emergency circumstance (i.e. flooding, downed power line, earthquake, etc.), please use the form below to report the problem. Our team of Customer Care Agents will respond to your email in the order received, Monday through Friday. Unexpected high volumes may result in a delayed response. The purpose of this paper is to elucidate light pollution as a normative concept, and focus specifically on its increasing role in shaping, or framing, future regulatory efforts, and decision-making processes. The goal is not to condemn or approve of the use of light pollution from an ethical perspective, nor is it to arrive at definitive answers for the ambiguities inherent in the concept. Rather, I begin by accepting the term as the dominant concept for describing a novel environmental problem, and critically reflect on its ethical significance and potential limitations. While the implications of light pollution are far-reaching, here I will focus specifically on light pollution as it relates to urban nighttime lighting. Such an analysis can be seen as an example of an issue discussed within this journal by Elliott (2009 Elliott, K. (2009). The ethical significance of language in the environmental sciences: Case studies from pollution research. Ethics, Place & Environment, 12, 157–173.10.1080/13668790902863382[Taylor & Francis Online] [Google Scholar]), namely the ethical significance of language and terminology choices for framing environmental policy decisions and debates. While Elliott discusses very different types of pollution, the themes highlighted are quite relevant for an examination of light pollution. Elliott—who draws from a more pragmatic branch of environmental ethics that I adopt here—describes the usefulness of practical ethics for policy discussions. Philosophers can help to create and define the moral space within which policy decisions will be made, and so can contribute to upstream policy decisions. Elliot (2009 Elliott, K. (2009). The ethical significance of language in the environmental sciences: Case studies from pollution research. Ethics, Place & Environment, 12, 157–173.10.1080/13668790902863382[Taylor & Francis Online] [Google Scholar], p. 170) explains that, For a comprehensive understanding of light pollution, contemporary discourse must be coupled with an exploration of the origins and emergence of the concept, which in turn requires a broad understanding of the development of urban nighttime lighting. Detailed historical studies into the technological innovations and social implications of artificial nighttime lighting have been published in the past few decades (e.g. Bowers, 1998 Bowers, B. (1998). Lengthening the day: A history of lighting technology. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [Google Scholar]; Ekirch, 2005 Ekirch, R. A. (2005). At day’s close: Night in times past. New York, NY: W. W. Norton & Company Inc. [Google Scholar]; Isenstadt, Maile Petty, & Neumann, 2014 Isenstadt, S., Maile Petty, M., & Neumann, D. (Eds.). (2014). Cities of light: Two centuries of urban illumination. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis. [Google Scholar]; Nye, 1990 Nye, D. E. (1990). Electrifying America: Social meanings of a new technology, 1880–1940. Cambridge: MIT Press. [Google Scholar]; Schivelbusch, 1988 Schivelbusch, W. (1988). Disenchanted night: The industrialization of light in the nineteenth century. (A. Davis, Trans.) London: University of California Press. [Google Scholar]). And, important studies on the social, economic, and legal aspects of nighttime lighting have also been published recently (e.g. Meier, Hasenöhrl, Krause, & Pottharst, 2014 Meier, J., Hasenöhrl, U., Krause, K., & Pottharst, M. (Eds.). (2014). Urban lighting, light pollution and society. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis. [Google Scholar]). The brief discussion below cannot do full justice to the in-depth explorations of nighttime lighting that these scholars have explored, nor to the various cultural and geographical nuances of historical developments in lighting. Rather, I would like to highlight the conditions within which light pollution arose, which puts us in a better position to assess our contemporary definition and ask how the framing of light pollution responds to the core problem discussed above. In particular, Sections 3.1 and 3.2 will highlight the shift away from how to light cities and, somewhat paradoxically, toward a desire for dark or natural nights. 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