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Globe at Night 2011 begins tonight February 21, 2011

Posted by aquillam in Astronomy, MichiganAstro, Science.
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The Globe at Night program begins tonight, and they need your help!

If you have a web-enabled phone, it’s really easy. Just go to http://www.globeatnight.org/webapp/ and follow the steps! It’s especially easy if your device is GPS enabled. The only thing you’ll need is to figure out where Orion is. At 9 pm, he’ll be in the south east.

If you don’t have a web-enabled phone, head to http://www.globeatnight.org/observe.html and follow the steps there. You may want to start there anyway if you don’t have a GPS enabled phone, since they have good links to help you get your latitude and longitude.

You can also get all the steps and the links from the GaN facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/GLOBEatNight.

The Globe at Night program wants this data because they are trying to measure how bad the problem of light pollution really is, and what effects it has. Light pollution is light that either doesn’t go where it’s needed (like up into the sky), or causes other problems (like flood lights aimed into the road.)

Light pollution is a growing problem, and it’s such an easy one to solve. It doesn’t just make the stars hard to see. It interferes with wildlife, like migrating birds or sea turtles. It’s been linked to increased cancer risk. Glare can actually cause safety and security problems. And of course, it’s a huge wast of electricity, which costs you tax dollars and contributes to global warming.  And we don’t even have to make sacrifices to solve it. We just have to make sure the lights are shining where we need them, like onto sidewalks and doorways, and not where we don’t, like straight up into the sky.

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