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What is light pollution?

Light pollution is the brightening of the night sky from artificial light.


Artificial light can be the lights from our homes, street lights, lights from schools, sporting parks etc.


Too much light pollution can:

  • affect the environment
  • disrupt the normal breeding and migration patterns of nocturnal animals
  • have negative health impacts on human beings, and
  • restrict observatories ability to see and research the night sky.

How light pollution affects astronomical research

One of the most important observatories in Australia is Siding Spring Observatory, located on the edge of Warrumbungle National Park NSW. It is one of the few light observatories in the world that can observe the whole southern-hemisphere sky.


The Observatory's work is crucial to expanding our understanding of the universe and the measures required to protect our planet's fragile environment.


To continue their significant research and for their telescopes to function properly, it is essential Siding Spring Observatory and its surrounding region have a clear dark night sky free from light pollution.

Our commitment to the dark sky

In an ongoing commitment to help protect the dark night sky and the region surrounding Siding Spring Observatory, we have produced the Dark Sky Guideline. The guideline provides advice on key lighting principles and controls to help minimise the impact of light pollution.


View the Dark Sky Planning Guideline

The Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 requires consideration of the Dark Sky Guideline for certain development in Coonamble, Dubbo, Gilgandra and Warrumbungle local government areas, as well as larger scale development within 200km of Siding Spring Observatory.


Whether you are a local resident, business owner, lighting retailer or an astronomy enthusiast everyone has a role to play in keeping the beautiful night sky free from light pollution.


Watch our video [2:16] on how you can help protect the night sky. 


Page last updated: 15/05/2019