Starry Sky of Tekapo–Light Source Pollution

Tekapo is located in the eastern foothills of the Southern Alps of the South Island of New Zealand and is a famous tourist attraction. Lake Tekapo, the town’s largest freshwater lake in Oceania, produces high-quality salmon and is a great place for fishing and water sports. Every year from autumn, numerous skiers in the world are attracted by the snow-capped foothills. 

Tekapo is best known for its starry night sky. At night, the sky is tranquil and bright, the Milky Way and the large group of constellations are clearly visible, as if in a fairy tale world. In fact, such a beautiful landscape was formed through the efforts of people in the town.

In addition to tourists, the town of Tekapo has only about 320 permanent residents. In order to maintain the beauty of the night sky there, Tekapo people have reduced their use of lights since 1981. They try to avoid the use of lights where there is no crowd, and accurately design the street lights so that the light beam accurately shines to the places that need to be illuminated without diffusing to the surrounding. There, the only light on the ground was fluorescent strips on both sides of the road. This series of measures enables people to see the beautiful starry night sky with the best view and to encourage the world to realize the importance of having a clear starry sky for human beings.

Since 2005, the town has submitted an application to the UNESCO World Heritage Committee to designate the sky as an “International Starry Nature Reserve”. The application was finally approved in 2012, and Tekapo Town became the world’s first “International Dark Sky Reserve”.

In recent years, more and more people have chosen to come here to experience this spectacular scene because people in cities have never seen such a night. Due to the city has a large number of factories and a large population, the pollution of light sources and air pollution prevents people in the city from having such a scene. It can be said that this is even a luxury for people living in cities. Even though we cannot ask people not to use any light source from now on, we can make people realize that light source pollution is also an existing problem.


9 Replies to “Starry Sky of Tekapo–Light Source Pollution”

  1. This was interesting because growing up in the city, there were always lights on and it never seemed to get that dark at night. I think it is good that they are trying to preserve the dark sky because this can not only help keep the beauty of the town, but also save energy used by lights.

  2. Indeed, light source pollution is a problem that can not be ignored. In big cities, the outer walls of high-rise buildings are mostly glass, which is highly reflective. Also, the whole street will be lit at night. All of these make people have no chance to enjoy the skylight. Watching the stars in the city will also be disturbed by the lights.

  3. I really learned something today. I never knew that the original area of the sky can also be applied for the protection of the world scenic spot. Growing up in the city, I had never seen a night sky as beautiful as this one. This is all the more reason to pay attention to light source pollution. I hope that in the future, we can also see such beautiful scenery in the city.

  4. I have heard a-lot about this particular location but had no idea it was at the risk of suffering due to light pollution. This is also something I’ve always been very curious about back home – living by the ocean you can notice the vast differences in the sky the farther you travel away from shore. I really hope light pollution never takes the ability to look up at the stars away as looking up at the constellations is a humbling, calming experience.

  5. I think this topic is interesting because people have to realize how important that they should protect environment and this is one of the very good example to show this idea.

  6. I think this is a pretty nice city and its great that they are actually doing and improving their city in order to maintain a beautiful show of lights

  7. This article talks lots of things about how Tekapo beautiful, it is different like other blogs, using another side to introduce how the world beautiful without pollution, which is very novel. Also, give me a new concept that light can be a source of pollution

  8. This was a very interesting blog post as I can relate to it heavily in my life. I go on a lot of camping trips and have been to places with very little light pollution. The view is very different from what you would normally see

  9. Its quite interesting what the residents are doing. Lights pollution given little consideration to. Other than that the fact lights are being used less means energy is saved the environment is automatically less harmed and this city is reaping the rewards in the form of a starry sky which is stunning.

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