When designing a lighting system we always take into consideration the impact we have on the
environment with our work.
Yes, we love landscape lighting and we believe that everyone should have…in fact, deserves a
beautifully designed and professionally installed low voltage lighting system. However, we are
aware of our environmental impact and we make every effort to keep our environmental impact
We’re members of the International Dark-Sky Association to keep ourselves up to date with their
recommendations to reduce light pollution and to educate our customers of the importance of
protecting our skies.
The IDA does have restrictions against landscape lighting but they are not excessive. It isn’t
because they haven’t done the research, it’s simply because this kind of lighting isn’t the real
problem with sky glow and light pollution. They often mention high voltage lighting, color
temperatures, street lighting, high lumen output fixtures and unshielded fixtures. As a fellow
landscape lighting contractor mentioned, he believes billboards to be a major problem with sky
glow and light pollution.
As lighting contactors these are the steps we take to lessen our light pollution impact.
1. We recommend that all fixtures be aimed at their intended location. For example – Down
lights should be directed through the tree canopy to create a moon-like effect. Path
lights, which have a shield should be installed, along paths to illuminate the pathway for
safe passage. Up lights should be shielded and not directed towards adjacent properties
or the street.
2. Color Temperature of a down light should not exceed 4000 Kelvins (color temperature of
natural moon light) and all other light should not exceed 2700K – 3000K. The IDA speaks
extensively about the importance of color temperature as the higher kelvin temperature
(more blue light) causes more damage to the
3. Have an astronomical timer, switch in the house or an app to turn the lights off and on. If there is no
timer it’s more likely that the lights will stay on all night. There is no need to have your lights on ALL
night. Turn them off after the party, or when you go to sleep. It’s not about saving energy (LED low
voltage systems pull so little energy) but it’s about reducing our impact.
As long as we educate ourselves and our customers and we do our best to minimize our impact
with low voltage lighting, I am confident that we’re doing the right thing. Again, the responsibility
falls on us all to keep light pollution down and to reduce sky glow, however the larger culprit of
these unfortunate environmental effects falls on larger industries who are still using high kelvin
(color temperature) lights with halogen lamps and lighting up unused parking, buildings,
billboards and streets.
For more information about the International Dark Sky Association please visit: www.darksky.org
Give us a call at 828-280-7047 so you can add landscape lighting to your home, while also using a company who
is aware of our impact and takes extra steps to minimize our footprint.