The House of Lords has released a report on the effects artificial light and noise has on human health

21 July 2023

In April Andrew Bissell, Lighting design Partner at Ridge, shared insights on presenting to the House of Lords on designing for dark skies. As his role as President of the Society of Light and Lighting Andrew joined three industry colleagues from the Institution of Lighting Professionals and discussed the effects of artificial light and noise on human health.

This week the House of Lords have released its report The neglected pollutants: the effects of artificial light and noise on human health, warning how environmental noise and light remain neglected pollutants, poorly understood and poorly regulated having negative impacts on human health. Noise and light pollution also have a significant impact on the economy: sleep disturbance is estimated to cost the UK economy £34 billion a year, according to RAND Europe, and noise and light pollution are contributing factors.

The report recommends the government set a national policy for light pollution and make use of the guidance which exists. During his evidence session Andrew highlighted that globally there are over 20 documents which provide excellent guidance and advice on limiting and reducing light pollution yet are not consistently adopted by all local authorities and / or clients.

Solving light pollution consists of both good design and the use of new technology, as stated in the report. Andrew has said:

“Myself and many others have been highlighting with the industry for years that ‘design’ is not valued.  The preferred approach always seems to be product driven or numerical analysis.  Seeing the report highlight the value of design as a solution is positive for clients, it shows that putting time into the design process will deliver high quality, low polluting solutions in both dark sky areas and in our cities.”

You can read the full report here: Light and noise pollution are “neglected pollutants” in need of renewed focus – Committees – UK Parliament

If you would like to talk to Andrew about how your projects can incorporate interesting and enjoyable lighting strategies while protecting the night sky, please contact him at andrewbissell@ridge.co.uk

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