My Community

General Astronomy => Light Pollution Topics => Topic started by: Michael Thompson on December 27, 2017, 03:20:05 PM

Title: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Michael Thompson on December 27, 2017, 03:20:05 PM
The company I work for is expanding the staging/loading area it uses and doubling the size. To accomplish this they have to reconfigure the entire area for proper and legal drainage.

As the business has grown so has the light pollution. It's reached a point of being a bad neighbor and the areas biggest sourse of stray light. This is due to the lighting in the yard being installed by the overwhelmed maintenance crew who buy the biggest, baddest light they can find, stick it on a pole and aim it straight out. The effect is blinding or course. We have 15-20 of these and will soon double the total.

As a 30 year employee I am able to speak to those in charge and those who can make a difference if they choose to.

I told the manager about the issue and how by using proper planning they can have both effective and safer lighting for minimal cost.

I spoke with the safety director about how our present lighting is both dangerous and inefficient and directed him to the International DarkSky Association website for information.

Well, the homes that were in the way of the expansion have been razed and the drainage system is going in.

The lighting system has not been and will not be modified.

Honestly, people just don't care about this issue even when presented with good information. Those I spoke with are people I trust to do the right thing.

I tried.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Randy Ott on December 29, 2017, 12:53:04 AM
Thanks for trying; it sounds like you did all you could do.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Tsar Daniels on December 29, 2017, 04:38:33 AM
I think I understand what they think.{they don't really care, LOL} The bottom line to them is money.Image Intensifiers are the answer. Yes they are somewhat expensive but the rewards are equal to it.1. 2.5 X times your aperture!2. Not as affected by light pollution!I've asked Celestron to make one that was more affordable.If we all were to ask Celestron to make an Intensifier they would listen. Tomorrow will come and we can prepare for it by taking action today. Come take a look at the "Video and electronics forum". If IIE aren't for you maybe a camera is your answer. There is a way out but you must "Seek and then "You will find". De Lorme
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: rotenoter on December 29, 2017, 12:41:52 PM
Your mistake was going to the management and talking about light pollution and telling them about the DarkSky website.Business do not care about that. They probably looked at you like some kind of nut and disregard you accordingly.You should have approach it as operating cost reduction\ money saved\complying with some energy saving\nuisance regulation. THEN at least it would have been considered and/or discussed.Never tell them your real goals. Politicians do this all the time to get what they want. We should do the same and learn from the best.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Eric Castillo on December 30, 2017, 07:06:47 AM
I agree. Most people cannot comprehend the light pollution issue, not even a tiny bit nor would they care if they did. I would have brought them cut sheets of light fixtures and energy usage information. Leave out all the astronomy stuff, it is totally irrelevant to the decision makers.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: sennessningwilch on December 31, 2017, 05:15:54 PM
I agree completely with the last two posts above. I suspect it could have been possible to influence the outcome had the right steps been taken. Also, one must expect / be prepared to actually spend significant money in the actual acquisition of <em class="bbc">demonstration light fixtures etc,.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: bermordliro on December 31, 2017, 05:59:27 PM
No, you are utterly wrong in those assumptions.I stressed safety and effectiveness. I mentioned LP once in each spiel. I simply failed in effectively presenting a compelling argument. .
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: belmadeasus on December 31, 2017, 08:42:25 PM
No, It's about the money. Their not into astronomy so it doesn't effect their thinking.The electric companies don't want to reduce there power consumption because of the UNIONS.The mayors don't want to propose a light reduction{power}because of the threat by the other party that their daughteror wife will get mugged while walking to the car or wherever. When people go inside the last thing they thinkabout is the sky unless the weather is posing some threat.You should see the neighbors around me with their securityflood lights. No amount of reasoning is going to counterthe fear effect. So for me I've found an alternative that not only cures light pollution but aperture fever; Image Intensifiers. De Lorme
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: ivirlocri on January 08, 2018, 12:25:37 AM
Post deleted by gene 4181
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: trodnenwisen on January 08, 2018, 03:45:32 AM
Judging from the replies I can say that my communication skills are very obviously lacking in clarity.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Jeff Swan on January 08, 2018, 02:45:45 PM
i understood everything you said, i appreciate you trying to go to management on the issue. i deal with safety departments in construction everyday. safety and efficient procedures cost money, sometimes short cuts are taken .  and after you explain how the lighting is unsafe because it blinds you trying to work around it, when you do get hurt, then they fight you on a state comp. claim. it seems as safety is important as long as it doesn't cost more. maybe the same could be said for all the lighting around homes, etc.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: sihealhdoggse on January 11, 2018, 11:43:35 AM
I can see the point the Herrointment is trying to make.Yes, LP is the problem but insted, approach them armed with more than words.Find out what kind of fixtures they are installing and how much it costs for those overall then compare it to some FCO LED fixtures. In other words, talk to there wallets.At least it may be worth a try.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Ray Gibas on January 12, 2018, 12:22:46 PM
I'm sorry Gene 4181 about the Union generalization statement. It wasn't my intention to upset anyone but justto give a basic understanding about the situation. So I apologize, please forgive. Ever think about the Federal reserve? Now there's a real problem. I hate politics so back to fun.  Right now I have a 8979HP intensifier and while it is bigthe views of M13 are the best I've ever seen in my light polluted sky. I put in my ES 24mm 68 degrees just to get acomparison and I could see it was there but not very well.The intensifier was so much better. I'm now searching for aGen 2 or 3 tube. To me it's going to make my CR6" 2.5x better for about the price of a 4" triplet Apo. The Apo or any eyepiece will not do anything for light pollution.I've contacted Celestron about making an Image Intensifierhoping that some competition will bring the price down.De Lorme
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Steve Lewis on January 13, 2018, 08:52:21 AM
no problemo. we face alot of problems , imagine the money saved and energy resources if we could shut off the un-necessary light. but they just tack them on to consumer goods prices and in taxes to constituents.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Kyle Wood on January 14, 2018, 01:49:40 AM
Gene 4181 "Tacking them on to consumer good prices and in taxes to constituents" is exactly right!Because we don't carry enough votes there not going to listen to us. I was desperate for a while praying and looking for a solution. The image 8079HP intensifier has been the solution I was looking for. Looking forward to getting a Gen 2 or just maybe a Gen. 3  De LormeBTW Thanks for the Kindness.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Michael Thompson on January 17, 2018, 12:50:50 AM
Quote
Judging from the replies I can say that my communication skills are very obviously lacking in clarity.
Your communications skills are in excellent order, trust me. If you presented your case to your employers with the aplomb with which you post here on CN, I'm positive that your message came across. That message, however, was likely so utterly foreign to them that you might as well have been proposing the introduction of a family of Amazonian electric eels into the company pond for environmental purposes; the response would have been identical in either case. People often "shut down" when faced with a situation or request that they have never considered previously, and the default reaction is to dismiss it out-of-hand, unless it is being proposed by someone considered by them to be a superior.As for the responses, keep in mind that this particular forum is devoted to discussing a problem to which there really no practical, over-arching solution; only the horrors of massive population reduction via war and/or pestilence, or global energy systems degradation would create the conditions to allow this (with all due respect to De Lorme, I don't consider electronic methods of viewing to be a solution of any sort, as one might just as well look at photos in a book or online); thus, it's entirely natural that coping mechanisms exist which do everything but acknowledge this. In my opinion, this venue exists more to blow off steam than to accomplish much of anything concrete, save for minor "victories" here and there while the war is being lost. Light pollution increases annually, and short of catastrophe will continue to do so in spite of our best efforts - one can bet on it.You did well by your efforts, Herrointment, and it would have been worthwhile had it diminished the LP in your vicinity. With thirty years in, I hope that you can soon retire to a darker area to enjoy astronomy; those are my plans for the near future, as I learned long ago that attempting to reduce light pollution near population centers, save in one's immediate environs, is truly an exercise in futility.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: laycacdownsell on January 22, 2018, 09:29:23 PM
If nothing had been said, then there is zero chance of enacting change. At least you made a presentation and tried. It is a losing battle, but sometimes small victories are rewarding. In this case, there was no victory, but does not make it any less worthwhile to try to fight it.

I agree with the bait and switch approach. Argue against LP with any reason other than it is LP. Present the ten other things it adversely affects with obnoxious over-lighting and the waste of money and energy. Particularly with energy waste as that is going to be larger issue over financial waste politically, even though the financial waste hits the number crunchers faster.

As far as De Lorme's post - De Lorme, I'm right there with you on image intensifiers. Just as far from the experience of looking at photos online as using conventional eyepieces or larger aperture in same white zones. In fact, for me, there is no experience like it. It is unique.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Joe Mallard on January 23, 2018, 12:27:07 AM
Sometimes existing business relationships or practices are difficult to change, even when presented with cost effective/ energy conserving alternatives. "The devil you know..."
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: imlukaro on January 23, 2018, 06:00:52 AM
Quote
You should have approach it as operating cost reduction\ money saved\complying with some energy saving\nuisance regulation. <strong class="bbc">THEN at least it would have been considered and/or discussed.[/b]


We don't know that it would have been considered/discussed.  Some businesses/individuals will always believe that the brighter the light, the safer the area, no matter how they are approached.

I applaud the OP, he made the effort, and did what he could to change their minds.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: toughhalrechal on January 23, 2018, 06:48:01 AM
I applaud the OP as well. Nothing said-nothing gained.At least an effort was made. How many astropeople actually say something to anyone other than a neighbor?
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: ndesevtenzio on January 23, 2018, 10:16:16 AM
In my dealings with issues surrounding poor lights, I have found that making one concerted effort has never, ever been sufficient.Lighting issues take time for people to consider. Back when the interstate highway system was first put in, trash littered the roadways. It took a concerted effort to get people to realize that throwing their trash out the window is unacceptable. That hasn't stopped a few people from doing it, but the interstates are vastly cleaner than they were 40-50 years ago.Same with lighting. We're on the very leading edge of this issue. So speaking up once isn't going to have much impact. And truth be told, it may have NO impact at your company. It's possible no one cares. I work at small company where I can talk to my boss about anything, pretty much. I've mentioned the lights on our building that aim out (not even down AT the parking lot!) and literally light up an empty 160 acre field (and of course the light keeps going beyond it).Her response? "They so cheap to operate, it really doesn't matter."Stupid? Yes. Shortsighted? Yes. Am I going to get it changed? Probably not. But that hasn't stopped me from other efforts, where I HAVE had success (neighbor to my west, and two streetlights nearby to me). This is a LONG haul, and we all just need to be patient, polite, and most of all, persistent. Keep bringing it up. Or, like with my streetlight issue, keep talking to OTHER people until you hit on the RIGHT person who can make a change. Those took me two years once I started, but as soon as I talked to the RIGHT person? They were changed in less than a week.Keep at it. Don't get discouraged.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: engoecircming on January 23, 2018, 03:23:45 PM
Quote
As a 30 year employee I am able to speak to those in charge and those who can make a difference if they choose to.I told the manager about the issue and how by using proper planning they can have both effective and safer lighting for minimal cost......The lighting system has not been and will not be modified.Honestly, people just don't care about this issue even when presented with good information. Those I spoke with are people I trust to do the right thing. I tried.
The overriding factor may likely have been a turf issue within the organization: the people in charge of the lighting part of the project perceived you as an outsider butting in, an interloper telling them how to do their job.  Even though you are a 30-year employee of this company, you are nevertheless effectively an outsider on anything to do with the lighting phase of the expansion project - else you would have been in the planning loop for the lighting to begin with and not needed to intercede with supposed friendlies in management to present your ideas.  What likely happened is that your management contacts were modestly impressed enough to mention at least a brief outline of your arguments to the lighting folks, but were quickly met with enough dismissive resistance from them that your management buddies decided this wasn't worth mounting a fight about it with the lighting people.  Now the fact that the lighting folks may care nothing about the issue of light pollution may have reinforced their turf-protecting instincts, but that's really only a secondary issue to resisting being told what to do by a meddlesome outsider.  And your immediate management contacts may have seen more risk of sewing team disharmony if they pushed hard enough to force the lighting changes you advocated than the incremental financial efficiencies seemed potentially worth - in this light, their seeming lack of any effective action from your presentation is not a rejection of it so much as it is regarding it as outweighted by other organizational factors.  Didn't seem worth the risk of rocking the boat when the lighting people turned a cold shoulder to it.In retrospect, the only way this presentation could have effectively worked is if your management friendlies were intrigued enough by your idea to adopt and push it as their own AND felt themselves on firm enough turf organizationally to push the lighting folks to come around on it.  But though they may have shown some interest at the time of your presentation, you never quite got them to the point of buying into ownership of the efficiency argument sufficiently to be willing to actually spend some of their management capital getting the idea implemented past bureaucratic resistance.OF COURSE, you were there, I wasn't, and so the above is merely educated speculation on my part.  Query though how plausibly on-the-mark or not this analysis sounds to you-who-were-there.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: tessacubadc on January 23, 2018, 04:53:31 PM
They are good people, the company is smallish and they are very very very busy juggling more projects than they should be. This is how business works now....load them up till you find the breaking point and push for more. It works but the human toll is considerable.

Anyway........

Dave, I believe your are correct (and this does not surprise me).

Your posts here over the last few years gave me the idea of going in for a word. I tried to use the information in those posts to build a presentation, however quick, that would be informative about the correct application of outdoor lighting in an industrial setting. I did OK, but I offered no specifics only generalizations and where to find information. I don't give presentations very often.....once every 30 years or so!

I guess I need to hand that information to them.

I've got next week off. Tomorrow I'll ask about the lighting plans and if they are finalized.

If they are not I'll ask about having another chat and offer specifics.

I'll try again. That's very good advice.

Thanks!

NOTE........ Links that apply would be very much appreciated!
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Mario Carpenter on January 25, 2018, 02:26:44 PM
I also admire any and all who take the time and hutzpah to approach management on an issue that affects their print on the environment. If government, corporations and we can't approach an issue, how will we solve it. So I guess we all keep quiet and get Image Intensifiers? (I am new to the hobby,2 days since new scope) I would hope we do both, discuss, and adapt.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: laycacdownsell on January 25, 2018, 02:49:49 PM
Quote
I also admire any and all who take the time and hutzpah to approach management on an issue that affects their print on the environment. If government, corporations and we can't approach an issue, how will we solve it. So I guess we all keep quiet and get Image Intensifiers? (I am new to the hobby,2 days since new scope) I would hope we do both, discuss, and adapt.

Did someone suggest keeping quiet and getting image intensifiers?
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Joseph Garrison on January 25, 2018, 08:18:43 PM
Quote
NOTE........ Links that apply would be very much appreciated!

This may help:

http://www.darksky.o...ments/is026.pdf (http://www.darksky.org/assets/documents/is026.pdf)

Yes, it's still IDA, but it has factual data information. From a business perspective, this is probably exactly what they do need (which I realize runs counter to what I argued in my other post about how we're doing it all wrong.)

This one is good too, though it's less about the figures and heavier on facts, but it discusses glare, which IS an issue for working outside:

http://www.facilitie...xterior-Ligh... (http://www.facilitiesnet.com/lighting/article/The-Challenges-of-Exterior-Lighting--1894#)

Don't just hand them the sheets and walk away. Highlight the cost savings and facts sections - judiciously, so they see the 'good' stuff quickly and easily. Then get them a copy of something like this, or show them this page - it's a great "bad vs. good" comparison:

http://illinoislight...g/fixture4.html (http://illinoislighting.org/fixture4.html)

Hope those help.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Tim Jauregui on January 30, 2018, 11:47:47 PM
Thanks.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: brodsandbacksosp on January 31, 2018, 12:16:24 AM
The bid for lighting has been accepted, no change possible.

Thank you all for the encouragement and comments!

Up next, the neighbors new unshielded "White-Hot Blazing Inferno" brand security light.

Photos at 11!
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: brodsandbacksosp on January 31, 2018, 06:54:29 AM
I have good neighbors. Nice people. They've taken the ten steps it takes to come over and look through the various scopes on numerous occasions. They know the time and effort I've put into the hobby. We have even talked about how their (now former) yard light really made things difficult.A few weeks ago they changed the light. To one easily twice as bright. I doubt this photo captures the glare, but walking up to my back door you need to shield your eyes. Tress are illuminated 50-75 yards away from their property.This light stuff is starting to kill my interest in the hobby. Don't know how you folk who have it far worse than I do keep up the faith.

Attached Thumbnails
(https://s14.postimg.org/emf2yyyq5/28_attachment_00.jpg) (https://postimg.org/image/emf2yyyq5/)
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: suppsilzuning on January 31, 2018, 01:51:19 PM
Quote
I have good neighbors. Nice people. They've taken the ten steps it takes to come over and look through the various scopes on numerous occasions. They know the time and effort I've put into the hobby. We have even talked about how their (now former) yard light really made things difficult.

A few weeks ago they changed the light. To one easily twice as bright. I doubt this photo captures the glare, but walking up to my back door you need to shield your eyes. Tress are illuminated 50-75 yards away from their property.

This light stuff is starting to kill my interest in the hobby. Don't know how you folk who have it far worse than I do keep up the faith.
Where are the laws that protect homeowners from *BLEEP* like that?!?
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: breakagalkit on February 02, 2018, 03:22:18 PM
Settling your neighborhood disputes by yourself has been made illegal most everwhere in the world...this is why they created money and attorneys....
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Michael Presley on February 02, 2018, 03:52:36 PM
Quote
I have good neighbors. Nice people.
Both of the preceding adjectives appear debatable considering your description of their actions, which would appear to indicate at best utter thoughtlessness, and at worst complete disregard of and disrespect for your interests which are well-known to them.I once thought a great deal more of my neighbors until events very similar to those you describe occurred; one rediscovers rather quickly in such a situation how self-interest almost completely rules the lives of most, and how markedly little authentic respect or true caring is shown for anyone other than those providing a paycheck or tender companionship.<p class="citation">QuoteThis light stuff is starting to kill my interest in the hobby. Don't know how you folk who have it far worse than I do keep up the faith.[/quote]Living here in the obscenely over-illuminated armpit of the nation (New Jersey) is unpleasant on so very many levels. Light pollution and trespass, which are effectively inescapable unless one travels literally hundres of miles away, are but single hobs on a very malignant gear; besides my beliefs and convictions being completely at odds with those of the majority of the populace, this is a hellishly expensive place to live. Only the knowledge that  impending retirement will result in a rapid change of address has gotten me through the last decade. While I certainly don't look forward to moving from where I've spent most of my life, the alternative is to continue living in what has effectively become a sewer - physically, mentally and spiritually. Depending upon how much astronomy means to you, perhaps it's time you considered a similar "exit strategy".
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: Brandon Costello on February 02, 2018, 08:21:57 PM
I have other and varied interests I can direct my energies toward. This hobby I may very well put down toward the bottom of my list of priorities. I can see video as a partial answer. More gear and wires are the kickers.Bottom line is that effort/reward equation is skewing more negative with time.A more balanced approach may be called for but this would require a change in my behavior regarding hobbies. I'm "all-in" and have a difficult time spreading my energies around. Perhaps I lack the capacity but I already have a huge head!
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: haigeoredis on February 03, 2018, 10:35:41 AM
Quote

.....

<p class="citation">QuoteThis light stuff is starting to kill my interest in the hobby. Don't know how you folk who have it far worse than I do keep up the faith.

Living here in the obscenely over-illuminated armpit of the nation (New Jersey) is unpleasant on so very many levels. Light pollution and trespass, which are effectively inescapable unless one travels literally hundres of miles away, ..... [/quote]

There are areas where it is ‘hopeless’. Many years ago, in my late 20’s, struggling with the LP and population density of NJ, I made a critical decision. I decided that living there was not for me, and that I was willing to accept the lower projected lifetime income that would result from a move to rural NY. Some 30 years later the income part has come true, but I’ve also been much happier living where the sky is much darker, there is abundant wildlife, and the population density is much lower than in NJ.

Now I face the possibility of gas frack’ing changing all of that. Luckily I also rent a “camp” in the central Adirondacks, were there is no gas shale, and where a typical SQM reading is 21.65. I may well move there full time.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: labulichar on February 09, 2018, 12:54:47 AM
Many of the communities in and around San Antonio have the same attitude. Businesses do work arounds of city ordinances. Car lots are spreading into previously dark areas. Fracking has ruined many previously dark sky sites south of the city. There are fewer and fewer dark areas for viewing.
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: swittetsakee on February 09, 2018, 03:16:26 AM
Talk to your friends who do not work for your company. Ask them to complain about the safety and security problems associated with blinding lights. Maybe someone will file a lawsuit claiming light trespass.Companies, cities, and counties need to hear about the issue again and again from different sources before the message sticks.Gale
Title: Re: Sometimes It's Hopeless
Post by: sennessningwilch on February 09, 2018, 06:36:27 AM
I'll keep my nose out of that!They get plenty of complaints...noise, dust, traffic etc. typical of a (re)growing business in a small town. That's part of the reason for buying 5 homes and removing them...they also removed a source of complaints! No dummies there!