A minimum and maximum illumination level will be stipulated, both for public and non-public light sources. Photo credit: KJB / BD.

Brno, Feb 6 (CTK) – Technical regulations to limit light pollution (also known as light smog) and lower the impacts on the environment and human health will take effect in the Czech Republic in March, Deputy Environment Minister Petr Hladik (KDU-CSL) told journalists today.

When installing new lighting points, both a minimum and maximum illumination level will be stipulated, both for public and non-public light sources.

The level of artificial lighting at night has been rising by 10% each year. Right now, over 80% of the global population lives under an illuminated sky at night, rising to over 99% in Europe.

The regulation is not part of any law, but is a separate guideline which will be referred to in the new construction law, Hladik said.

Since it will not be valid retroactively, it will not refer to current lighting, but to new installations.

The legislation will cover five areas: the lighting of the road network such as roads, parking lots, pavements and bike paths; the lighting of outdoor premises such as halls, storage facilities and airports; the lighting of outdoor sports areas, such as arenas and downhill slopes; architectural lighting of memorials and artefacts; and illuminated advertising in the form of billboards and LED panels.

Hladik said the legislation should have an impact on both the environment and human society.

“The populations of insects and invertebrates have been rapidly falling in the long-term, mainly in towns and villages,” he added.

Light attracts the attention of insects, disturbing the established biorhythms bound to food and reproduction, Hladik said.

He said the Czech Republic wanted to be a leader in this field.

“It is a topic that is not dealt with globally. We want it not only for the communal sphere, but also for the non-public sphere such as production plants, logistic centres, and parking lots at department stores,” he added.

“We want the topic of light pollution to become global and similar legislation to be applied at the European and global level,” Hladik said.

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