New bid to protect ‘dark skies’
DURING THE day, the beauty of the North York Moors is clear for all to see but its nighttime landscape is also unique. The National Park is one of the best places in the country to see stars because of its clear horizons and low light pollution levels – meaning it is possible in some areas to see up to 2,000 stars at a time in contrast to the handful that are visible in towns and cities on clear nights.
At next week’s meeting of the National Park Authority, members will be asked to back a £50,000 grant scheme that aims to ensure such a privileged position is retained for generations to come. The benefits of reducing light pollution where possible include promoting tourism, improving wildlife habitats and cutting down on carbon emissions. But those behind the plans must also strike a balance so farms and rural businesses which use light for nighttime security to discourage criminals are not penalised. That way, the whole of the North York Moors can keep shining.