Light pollution decreases in the Netherlands: the country gets darker
The Netherlands is one of the most illuminated countries in the world. In the last six years, light pollution has increased every year, but not anymore. According to research which looked at the 54 largest cities in the country, the Netherlands is getting darker. Dutch nature and environmental organisations are calling this a “turning point”.
Not shining as brightly
The satellite Suomi NPP has been measuring rising light from a great distance for the last six years. Despite increasing every year, the Netherlands now seems to have reached a turning point and is now getting darker.
The darkest cities relatively are Stadskanaal, Groningen; Dronten, Flevoland; Emmen, Drenthe and Heerenveen, Friesland. The most light pollution stems from Amsterdam and the area in which Delft, Rotterdam, The Hague and Zoetermeer can be found.
Whether or not the Netherlands becomes even darker in the coming years depends, to a large degree, on businesses. Municipalities, provinces and the Department of Public Works (Rijkswaterstaat) are already dimming and switching off lights where possible. However, some companies are in the habit of leaving lights and advertisements on for the whole night, as LED lighting doesn’t cost that much.
The Netherlands in darkness on Saturday
On Saturday, October 27, the 14th edition of the Night of the Night (Nacht van de Nacht) was held. Throughout the country, hundreds of events were held in darkness and multitudes of companies and municipalities switched off lights from buildings and advertisements.