World: Do you know what light pollution is and why it is a problem? Think of big cities. The more artificial light, the less we can observe the night sky. In addition to not being able to see the stars well due to this pollution, there are more serious implications: it influences the habits and cycles of plant and animal species. Have you ever heard a bird singing at dawn, when it should have been sleeping? So it is. Frogs and insects are also examples of animals that suffer from excessive artificial light.
And how can we help?
A citizen science initiative called Globe at Night brings people together from around the world to research levels of light pollution. More than 200,000 measurements have been provided by residents of 180 countries over the past 14 years. Volunteers in the program measure the brightness of the night sky in their area and then submit observations from a computer or smartphone.
The good news is that the initiative is always recruiting volunteers. Images can always be uploaded, and the next issue of targeted observations is approaching: September 27 – October 6, 2021. The Globe at Night campaigns for 10 consecutive days of each lunar month — when the moon doesn’t rise in the first half of the night.
To participate, simply download a sky observation app on a smartphone (such as the NASA app or Sky Map), capture the images as indicated by the program and then upload them to the software — the initiative’s own website has an app for receive them.
This time, the target constellation of the research will be Sagittarius, for those who observe from the southern hemisphere – the case of Brazil – and Pegasus for those in the northern hemisphere.