How IoT can help reduce light pollution
Light pollution is on the rise with 60% of Europeans no longer being able to see the Milky Way at night.
Year on year, global lighting has increased 6%, with a 19% increase of brightly lit areas between 1992 and 2009.
Light pollution is an excessive and inappropriate level of artificial light in the night environment which can be disruptive and harmful to both wildlife and humans. It is an anthropogenic pollutant, meaning that it originates from human activity, often caused by electricity from houses, offices, streetlights and car headlights.
With 83% of the world’s population living under light polluted skies, it can cause a range of negative ramifications.
Excess light can cause physical damage such as eye strain, loss of clear vision, aging of the eyes and stress. It can also cause physiological issues caused by the interruption of the circadian cycle.
This is the built-in-cycle, which is responsible for sleep and wake patterns, hunger, activity, hormone production, body temperature, and a range of other physiological processes. A change in this cycle can result in sleep disorders and other health implications such as stress, exhaustion, headaches and increased anxiety.
How IoT can help
Enhancing existing street lighting infrastructure with a LoRaWAN enabled ecosystem can help local authorities control and monitor their entire system remotely and more intuitively.
Current street lighting systems can only be turned on or off. By introducing IoT technology, local authorities can remotely adjust the brightness levels dependent on the need for light.
Having this control brings with it a range of benefits such as reduced maintenance costs and energy consumption, but could also help reduce the level of light pollution by minimising unnecessary light.
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