Light Efficient Community
In Strathcona County's work to advance social, environmental and economic sustainability, it became the first community in Alberta to endorse a Light Efficient Community Policy approved July 2010.
Light Efficient Community policy.
View the Righting the Light video to learn:
- why Council passed the policy
- what it means for our community
- how the policy is being implemented
- the benefits of dark skies for wildlife
Bring back the stars over Strathcona County
Through the application of good lighting practices, Strathcona County and its citizens will:
- improve their night-time environment and quality of life
- reduce energy costs and waste
- return a natural heritage of dark skies to the community
- serve as an example to other communities
Elk Island National Park and the Cooking Lake-Blackfoot Recreation Area, two BHI partners, are currently working towards designation as an "International Dark Sky Preserve".
The Beaver Hills Initiative (BHI) formed in 2002, supported their efforts to pursue "Dark Sky Preserve" designation and respected the commitment needed to adapt all their lighting to those set out in the Dark Sky Guidelines. This effort resulted in their Dark Sky Preserve Designation in 2006.
In 2008 the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada invited the Strathcona County Wilderness Centre to become a part of the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve, followed in 2009 by the Ukrainian Heritage Cultural Village.
Strathcona County Council became increasingly interested in encouraging dark sky practices throughout Strathcona County. On July 6, 2010 Strathcona County Council adopted a light efficient community policy . The purpose of this policy is to reduce light pollution and increase access to dark nighttime skies by promoting the use of light only where it is needed, when it is needed, and at levels suited to the task.
One of the first steps in implementing this policy was the development of a Dark Sky and Energy Efficient Lighting Community Handbook, illustrating to citizens the social, economic and environmental benefits of efficient lighting, and practical advice on how to properly light spaces.