Local Group Name - Campaign to Protect Rural England

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Starry Skies Campaign

Thursday, 20 February 2020 13:00

CPRE Avonside recently launched a local Starry Skies initiative, providing opportunities for local groups, families, and young people – especially from urban areas - to engage with the night sky through a series of stargazing sessions across the Bristol and wider Avon area. We want raise awareness of the value of dark skies, the effect of light pollution on our view of the night sky, its impact on the countryside, wildlife and human health, and how we can reduce it.

A star-filled sky is one of the most magical sights you can see in our countryside, and the stars have inspired art and culture for thousands of years. But too often, light pollution means that many of us can’t see the stars, especially if we live near a big town or city. Just 2% of people in England experience ‘truly dark skies’.

Dark skies are also important for the health and wellbeing of people and animals. Too much artificial light can impact our sleep, disrupt nature’s natural cycles and confuse wildlife. In addition to helping the nation reconnect with the wonder of a starry sky, we’ll use the data to lobby local councils to make changes to reduce the impact of artificial light. Light pollution is also a large contributor to our carbon emissions, so the more we can tackle this the more beneficial it will be to addressing climate change.

Running between February and July 2020 we are running free events that everyone is welcome to attend. These events will consist of a combination of talks, workshops, space-themed activities and star gazing sessions, and are open to children and adults alike. They are designed to help people feel connected with our wonderful countryside (the benefits of this for well-being are widely recognised), and also highlight the effects of light pollution on our view of the night sky and its impact on our own health, on the countryside and to wildlife.

This project builds on the charity's annual national Star Count Campaign which maps the country's darkest skies and identifies areas impacted by significant light pollution. It also compliments the recent recommendation published by the Government for 'a night under the stars in a national landscape for every child'.

Local Starry Skies events

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