Thursday, October 07, 2010

Light Pollution

When I was a kid, I liked to look at the sky at night. I gazed the moon and countless of stars…

Today, I still look at the night sky, but I see fewer stars… There are two possible explanations as to why I don’t see as many stars: First, my eyes have deteriorated over the years; and second, light pollution.

As a kid, I lived in a small town with little nightlife. Now, I live in a big city that never sleeps. Artificial light fills the horizon with orange haze, and blinds us in such a way that we no longer can see the Milky Way.

Today, if we want to see the long-forgotten starry sky, we need to go to less developed areas, or up a mountain. I wish I could do so, if only for a few nights…

For all the benefits of artificial light, we shouldn’t pretend that nothing is lost.

- National Geographic Magazine, Nov 2008 issue

Starless Sky


  1. I saw night sky filled with glistening stars while riding a donkey up Mt Sinai in Egypt a couple of years ago. Totally awesome moment.

  2. I think the moments I could enjoy night sky was when I went for camping in the jungle. :D

  3. Agree with you. How I wished to see a night full of stars!

  4. haha, i don't think it's your weakening eyesight lah..

  5. it has to be what you call the "light pollution", where the sky is too bright for any stars to be seen..

  6. well, but i really don't remember when was the last time i've ever gazed at the sky at night already.. :D

  7. I had even seen meteor shower from airport in my younger days........

  8. Mei Teng
    Mt Sinai? You went there for pilgrimage?

    Yes, jungle may be...

    I think situation in Singapore is worse.

    Try go to a remote area and gaze at the sky.

    That must be many years ago...

  9. i cant remember when was the last time i looked up and saw stars. on the best day, at most i could see was a little bit of moon..

  10. In New Zealand, they want to declare a place in South Island as World heritage for no light pollution.

    I was always lousy in the sky. I remember my first science lesson in form 1. It was constellation, I remember the 3 stars, but I don't know any thing else.

  11. Oh i love to look at the sky at night just enjoying watching the twinkling stars! :D

  12. at here still can see lotsa stars! :) except for rainy days. :(

  13. oh btw, wanted to tell u i rcved d book already! thanks so much yea! ;)

  14. xin
    Yeah, it's difficult to see stars these days...

    South Island as World's Heritage for no light pollution? That's interesting.

    Hmm... you can see lotsa stars in Sabah?

  15. 我条村,依然可以睇到咯!不过就冇以前咁多咗。。。

  16. I know what you mean! I saw the different (i.e. the sky without light pollution) when we visited a small town in rural Ontario a month ago.

  17. At least there is lesser light pollution in Malaysia compared to Singapore.

    Over here, even if we switch off the lights at night, it will not be pitch dark, because of all the street lamps outside.

  18. I'm glad the North Star is still visible most nights even though the others are blotted out.

  19. I do miss all the starry starry nights. Luckily I still can see the Southern Cross and clear moon phases from my house in the city.

  20. Oh you have to get out of the city! Pollution and bright lights will definitely prevent you from seeing those beautiful stars.

    Maybe you need to take a break and go to a more remote area for a few nights to enjoy the night sky!