Shedding a Different Kind of Light My Story

| 02 Nov 2015 | 12:16

For you with computers, I urge you to search “Protests and Sodium Street Lights.” Yes, there is a world-wide protest against the replacement of sodium street lights with the LED light kind, because they turn night into day and invade people’s homes, and it will happen in your neighborhood unless there is a massive protest.

Of course, we need to save the planet, but in ways that don’t do harm. Indeed we do good by reducing the excessive electric light wattage, which thanks to lighting industries, and the astronomical use of lighting in entertainment venues, has become du riguer in the last half century. This is the do-no-harm way to cut back, not by adversely affecting our everyday places -- our homes, our streets –- the natural cycle of darkness, also needed by plant life. And oh so needed is the calming beauty of the night itself and especially in the city. Right now the street lighting is just about perfect.

LED’s lower operating cost is no reason to use them except in places where they will not do harm – used in moderation and with warmer light spectrum rather than the stark blue whites. That goes for fluorescent tubes, too. If only the so called efficients had never been invented. The incandescent bulb makes everything and everyone look better and feel better, too. They’re biodegradable and don’t emit radiation. They are more than worth the operating or energy consumption cost.

As for moderation the famed Rockefeller Chritams tree is so overlit you can’t see the magnificent sacrificed tree for the lights. I love holiday lights but now they’re way too profuse - less is more.

And I’ve strayed from what couldn’t be more important to save -- our sodium street lights. Make New York the city of the right lights. While Paris still resists the LEDS, reports say it will eventually relent. Why? Protesting the LED street lamps Internet search finds communities abroad, especially posting “Save Our Street Lights” signs.

And please get hold of the N.Y. Times March 24 piece “With LED Streetlights, Saving Energy but Exhausintg Residents” and especially read its Sunday Oct. 18 Op Ed, “Ruining That Moody Urban Glow” by author Lionel Shriver. The title is misleading. Far more than a mood is negatively altered by the LED streetlight. Not only does she note how blue spectrum LED lights are known to affect sleep paterns, they’re also a known risk for breast cancer. Such argments are needed for those who pooh pooh the aesthetic effect those of us like Shriver so stronlgy experience. Unfortunately we don’t seem to make the rules. That must be changed.

A concerned mental health professial friend gave me a Nov. 2 New Yorker full-page photo of Tompkins Square Park lit by a sodium street lamp. The caption blithely notes how the soft glow of New York’s sodium street lamps will be replaced by the “more brightly burning, less meliflous LEDS.. and soon will soon have gone the way of the pay phone.”

“Not if we can help it,” this mental health professional said. I so desperately hope that you say it too! To be contined no doubt.