FAS – Dark Skies Position
The Email below was issued by the FAS on 03/03/2021. The statement can be downloaded here 1 FAS DARK SKIES POSITION STATEMENT
Dear FAS Member Society
I have pleasure in sending you the FAS position document on Dark Skies that was recently agreed by the FAS Council. My thanks to Bob Mizon of CfDS for taking time to read it to ensure that it is compatible with other national initiatives and for his suggestions. It has three key components each of which is explained in the body of the document. The essentials can be summarised as follows.
The FAS supports the proposals of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Dark Skies APPG for Dark Skies (appgdarkskies.co.uk) and of the groups whose work underpins them and urges societies to do the same.
Dark skies are important for cultural and aesthetic reasons. Light pollution harms human well-being, wildlife and biodiversity, entails waste and contributes to climate change. The FAS believes that the interests of astronomers are most effectively pursued by recognising that they represent an element in this much bigger picture.
The FAS endorses the Dark Skies Matter initiative. This is based on a partnership of local organisations having different interests and agendas but sharing common ground in supporting dark skies and opposing light pollution.
We think that this model could make a strong contribution if a good number of societies implemented it. The first step is to approach other groups with a view to building a local partnership committed to speaking with one voice about dark skies and light pollution. Such a partnership is likely to have an advantage over a single interest group in influencing opinion and by giving access to many more lines of communication and potential supporters.
If you are interested in learning more about the Dark Skies Matter model, please take a look at the website at https://www.darkskiesmatter.org.uk , being sure to use that exact url. The original partners are identified there along with the other organisations who have since come onboard to declare support. Please consider signing up to register your support as well and give serious thought to developing a local initiative of your own.
If you have any questions or would like to discuss anything relating to this or the position statement in general, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com and I’ll be glad to help in any way I can.
John Evans FRAS
Dark Skies Adviser Federation of Astronomical Societies Founder and Coordinator Dark Skies Matter
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