January 13, 2019
Toquerville has recently undertaken the replacement of nearly all of the City’s municipal lighting with LED powered luminaires (light fixtures).
The new luminaires operate at lower cost but provide the same illumination as the old ones. They also provide more flexibility in that they can be programmed to operate at a lower level of light output where appropriate and even to change power levels according to the time of night. Most importantly, they direct their light output down to the ground, not upward into the sky. This helps preserve our dark skies.
However, municipal lighting is only part of the overall lighting in the City of Toquerville. The City does not presently have commercial lighting and this means the rest of the lighting today is from the City’s residents. To help preserve our wonderful dark skies Toquerville has an exterior lighting ordinance, and it applies to both municipal lighting and residential lighting.
As you have undoubtedly noticed, Toquerville is growing! Toquerville’s dark skies are a precious resource which is easy to lose but would be very difficult to recover if lost. What will our night sky look like in the future? Will there be anything left to see for our children to be inspired by, marvel at, and cherish? Will the wonderment of the night sky be just a distant faded memory for those of us who were once lucky enough to gaze upon it? We can’t let that become our fate. That’s why we need your help.
Many communities in Utah are actively reducing light pollution. Torrey is the first to be designated an International Dark Sky Community. Others will be designated soon. Many are working to cut light pollution and protect the night sky, including Boulder, Eagle Mountain, Virgin, Bryce Canyon City, Eden, Helper, Moab, Rockville, Kanab, Heber City, Park City, Garden City, Bluff, and others. Nine Utah Parks are designated and 20 more are working on it.
We are fortunate to live in Toquerville, on the way to Zion and other national parks. These pristine, magical places generate no light pollution but are defenseless against invading light pollution from us and our neighbors. It is our responsibility to be good stewards and take the lead to protect these special places.
If you can save money, protect your health, protect the environment, and preserve our heritage of beautiful night skies, will you do it?