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Old 19-09-2019, 08:56 AM
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Outcast (Carlton)
Always gonna be a NOOB...

Outcast is offline
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Cairns, Qld
Posts: 548
I've been down & am continuing to travel down this road with Cairns regional council.

I've been hitting them from the effects on human health, the environment, marine life & probably the best argument available, cost savings via reduced energy consumption. No point in arguing the benefits for backyard astronomers really, we're such a niche group, I doubt it would make for a strong argument.

Whilst you big city dwellers most likely think that a small regional town couldn't possibly have a huge light pollution issue, if you look at an LP map that shows the intensity of our bloom for such a small place, you would be appalled!!

Thus far, all I'm getting is excuses, they listen, they seem to be concerned but, & this is a big BUT, they claim they have little to no control over what gets installed!!

I've been amazed to hear what I would consider a huge conflict of interest here in QLD. According to council, ERGON Energy (Govt owned energy company) writes & controls the policy on what lights can be used, shielding requirements, light spacing, etc, etc... seriously doubt an energy retailer sees any value in reducing energy usage thus affecting their bottom line...

Seriously!! What bureaucrat thought that giving ERGON that responsibility was a good idea??

The good news (& it's not much), the council has shared with me their plans regarding future lighting & it does include adequate shielding to limit light spill but, it is LED in the 3000 - 4000k range & sadly, ERGON policy doesn't permit the lower k range??

The other 'excuse' I get is that council struggles over what they specify & what the contractor actually installs... sounds like they need to grow a set & hold the contractor to account however, they claim they don't have the resources to even identify let alone do anything about non-compliance!!

The fight is not over but, I fear I'm in a very small group of concerned community members in a town that largely does not GAF... I remain hopeful however, not just for my astro but, for our community health.
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