A PA State Senate Proclamation has been filed in the State Capital of Harrisburg recognizing April 22 – 30 as International Dark Skies Week.
This proclamation was introduced by COMITTA, BROWNE, STREET, FONTANA, COSTA, CAPPELLETTI and KEARNEY on April 25, 2022, who hope this will bring awareness to the issue and will fuel enough interest for a hearing in the Fall.
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Diane Turnshek has been working on light pollution mitigation since she returned from the Mars Desert Research Station in 2013. Below you will find articles and video from the years of work she has put into this project.
ISS Astronauts took these two shots as they passed by overhead to register the light pollution levels in Pittsburgh, PA. They’ll continue to record images during the LED streetlight conversion.
A note from Diane Turnshek:
We’re trying hard to make a difference. PA State Senator Comitta is willing to move forward with calling a Senate hearing on statewide dark skies legislation, but really only if we can show the idea has support. You’ve heard me talk about this for years — and I thank you.
Can I ask one more thing? Sign the petition to show we have the numbers we need to get politicians interested in getting involved?
Thanks for listening.
Diane Turnshek’s INTERVIEWS and NEWS ARTICLES
The Squirrel Hill Magazine
“Bright Streets, Dark Sky”
by Melissa Eppihimer
March 25, 2022
(Click on image to enlarge)
Volume 20, Issue 1, Spring 2022
Pages 19 and 20.
City Cast Pittsburgh
Meet Pittsburgh’s Dark Sky Defender, Diane Turnshek
by Francesca Dabecco
Interviewed by Morgan Moody
Thursday, March 24, 2022
“Writer, astronomer, and Carnegie Mellon University researcher Diane Turnshek has been encouraging cities to address light pollution for decades — and Pittsburgh finally caught on. Today, she talks about the new city ordinance she helped create, what it’ll take to replace 40,000 streetlights in Pittsburgh, and how much humans have in common with birds, bats, and the springtime flora we love most.”
Listen to Podcast
Astronomer Diane Turnshek leads the fight for Dark Skies in Pittsburgh and beyond
by: Michael Machosky
January 19, 2022
ABC Action News: Pittsburgh pledges to become a ‘dark sky city’ in 2022
by: Scripps National
Posted at 3:04 PM, Jan 03, 2022
“Light pollution severely affects the natural environment pollinators, and bird migration, fireflies,” said Diane Turnshek, a special lecturer in the Carnegie Mellon University physics department.
6-minute Canadian Radio One “As It Happens” broadcast
With Carol Off and Chris Howden
January 3, 2022
The new year started with a bang in Pittsburgh. How scientists know the New Year’s Day boom over Pittsburgh was an exploding meteor.
Astronomer Diane Turnshek was in her kitchen on Saturday morning when she heard a “humongous crash” that rattled all the suncatchers on her window.
GOODNET, the gateway to doing good.
This City is Dimming its Lights and Going Dark Sky
by: Bonnie Riva Ras
January 1, 2022
The ordinance also replaces the newer LED streetlights that were installed in the 2010s. “About a decade ago, 4,297 streetlights were replaced with 5,000-kelvin LEDs,” Diane Turnshek a dark sky expert and lecturer at Carnegie Mellon University told Sky and Telescope.
Archinect News: Pittsburgh is the latest city to join the dark-sky movement
by: John Niland
December 29, 2021
What too much artificial light steals from our night skies
by: Isabella Isaacs-Thomas
Dec 16, 2021
Light becomes pollution when it’s not serving a useful purpose . . .
Why Pittsburgh Is Dimming Its Streetlights
by: Josyana Joshua
December 14, 2021
(Click on image to enlarge)
Pittsburgh has budgeted $16 million for the streetlight project and estimates it will save $1 million in energy costs . . .
The Philadelphia Citizen IDEAS WE SHOULD STEAL: CUTTING LIGHT POLLUTION
by: Christina Griffith
December 14, 2021
On October 28, a solar storm launched a coronal mass ejection towards Earth, hurling magnetic energy and plasma into our atmosphere. A spectacular aurora, a phenomenon generally only seen near the Arctic Circle, was visible in the sky as far south as Pennsylvania.
KCRW’s 9th Annual Radio Race: NEWBIE AWARD
Boen Wang & Susan Peterson’s Think of Me When You See the Stars
Nov. 22, 2021
An astronomer fights for the right to starlight.
The Allegheny Front: A DARK SKY ADVOCATE SAYS LIGHT POLLUTION SEPARATES US FROM THE STARS
by: Kara Holsopple
October 27, 2021
Pittsburgh is trying to dim light pollution. The city’s Dark Sky Lighting ordinance signed by Mayor Bill Peduto in September calls for modifying lighting in newly constructed or renovated city-owned facilities, city parks, and street lights.
Sky & Telescope
Pittsburgh Goes Dark: Could this new Dark-Sky ordinance begin a trend?
by: Jamie Carter
October 12, 2021
Can you see the Milky Way from your home? Diane Turnshek can, and she wants to Pittsburgh to see it, too.
Pittsburgh enacts measure targeting light pollution to become ‘dark sky’ city
by Jeremy Beaman, Energy and Environment Reporter
October 04, 2021
Pittsburgh decided it wants more darkness, but the city isn’t turning out the lights — it’s just turning them down.
Dark Skies Ordinance To Dim Pittsburgh’s Light Pollution
by: Emily Payne
September 27, 2021
CMU Special Faculty Diane Turnshek helps Pittsburgh bring new regulation to light.
International Dark Sky Association, September Monthly Star: Q&A with Advocate Diane Turnshek from Pittsburgh, USA
International Dark Sky Association
September 24, 2021
Each month the International Dark-Sky Association features an IDA Advocate from the worldwide network of volunteers who are working to protect the night in a feature called ‘Monthly Star.’ This month we’re highlighting the work of IDA Diane Turnshek from Pennsylvania, USA
Heard on Morning Edition
Pittsburgh Wants You To See Constellations When You Look Up At The Night Sky
A Martinez, host
September 16, 2021
Diane Turnshek interviewed on NPR’s Morning Edition.
Text and audio recording
Two minute listen.
Peduto introduces ‘Dark Sky’ legislation to reduce light pollution in Pittsburgh.
by Paul Guggenheimer
August 25, 2021
Some Pittsburgh residents may have been wondering why some stars in the night sky have been more difficult to see in recent years. Or why evenings seem less tranquil than they used to?
KDKA Live interview
Diane Turnshek – Carnegie Mellon University astronomer.
With Lynne Hayes-Freeland
August 25, 2021
Pittsburgh Post Gazette
Seeing the light: Peduto administration aims to reduce light pollution in proposed ordinance
by: Ashley Murray
August 24, 2021
An effort to see the Milky Way is underway with a potential new city law that requires softer, subtler lighting in Pittsburgh
Artificial Light Survey of Nighttime Pittsburgh
by: Metro21: Smart Cities Institute
Drones are camera enabled, with attached 500 lines per millimeter diffraction gratings over the camera. Preliminary flights identified different light sources, such as incandescent, LED, high-pressure sodium vapor, and mercury.
This site is updated as the project progresses.
A Light Map Could Illuminate How Street Lamps Are Part Of Pittsburgh’s Pollution Problems
by Kiley Koscinski
July 6, 2020
Streetlights emitting artificial beams through neighborhoods every night could be to blame for decreasing firefly populations and a generation of young people with no concept of what the Milky Way looks like in a starry night sky. A Carnegie Mellon University professor and self-proclaimed dark-sky defender, Diane Turnshek, is working with a small team to study the problem of night time light pollution in the Pittsburgh area.
The bright lights of New York mean dark times for stargazers
by Will Pavia
June 20 2020
In Padua in the autumn of 1609 Galileo Galilei tilted his new telescope to the heavens and saw craters on the moon for the first time. Bart Fried did the same thing this year in Brooklyn during a stargazing party.
Dark Skies Over Pittsburgh, PA – Interview: “THERE WERE NO MORE STARS . . .”
by: Aria Alamalhodaei
Jun 16, 2020
Turning down Pittsburgh’s lights might help the city see stars, but first . . .
Christian Science Monitor
Chasing darkness: One reporter’s journey into the night
by Eva Botkin-Kowacki Staff writer
December 21, 2018
Today, our relationship to the cosmos is largely mediated by technology, through telescopes and NASA missions. But for millennia, humans could simply look up on a clear night to marvel at the bright speckles that stretched directly over them. Professor Turnshek has spearheaded efforts to reduce light pollution in Pittsburgh.
Living Green: A form of pollution that can be fixed in a flash
by Melissa Chaun
Jul 8, 2018
Many of us don’t realize the effects we are having on our natural surroundings.
Metro21 Podcast: Diane Turnshek Talks Light Pollution and the Night Sky
November 14, 2018
Diane Turnshek Talks Light Pollution and the Night Sky
Listen to the podcast
Carnegie Science Center Podcast: Light Up the Sky with Stars
December 5, 2016
How far do you have to travel to see the stars clearly? Join lecturer, author, and astronomer Diane Turnshek as she discusses how light pollution not only prevents us from living under a sky bright with stars, but also negatively impacts human health and the environment.
Listen to the podcast
Physics professor receives grant to study light pollution with drones
by: Owen Fox
Sep 30, 2018
Led by Diane Turnshek, a professor of experimental physics at CMU, and Stephen Quick, a professor in the School of Architecture, a team of about 15 researchers, students, and night sky enthusiasts are hoping to create a comprehensive map of Pittsburgh’s light emissions using drones.
Pittsburgh group fights for dark skies
by Emma Flickinger
Oct 28, 2018
Roughly half of the stars visible in the 1990s can no longer be seen in Pittsburgh’s night sky. The stars aren’t going anywhere — so why can’t we see the Milky Way?
Diane Turnshek to Present at TEDx Pittsburgh
by: Jocelyn Duffy
May 23, 2015
Physics faculty member Diane Turnshek will present a lecture at TEDxPittsburgh on the impact of light pollution. The event begins at noon on Saturday, May 23  at the Byham Theater in downtown Pittsburgh.
University of Pittsburgh, Department of Physics & Astronomy: Diane Turnshek receives the Dark Sky Defender Award
Diane Turnshek, part-time lecturer in our department and special lecturer in the Department of Physics, received a Dark Sky Defender Award from the International Dark-Sky Association (IDA). The award is given in appreciation of the recipients’ efforts to further the IDA’s mission to preserve the night skies by promoting quality outdoor nighttime lighting. READ MORE
International Dark Sky Association Pittsburgh Section meeting live streamed to Facebook:
Tuesday, April 26, 2022
Sierra Club of New Jersey: The Stars Are Always Above You
April 13, 2022 (posted on YouTube April 14)
For over a century, we have been lighting the night indiscriminately to advertise, celebrate and signify progress. But now, researchers are finding what should have been obvious, our planet’s dark hours are important for animals and plants, and even human health.
TEDxCMU Innovation EXPO Interview with Pittsburgh’s International Dark-sky Association October 25, 2020
Triangulation: Dark Skies anthology contains 21 fantasy, science fiction and horror stories from around the world, exploring the ways that stars affect our lives.
Editors: Diane Turnshek and Chloe Nightingale
Managing editor: Douglas Gwilym
Read more about Dark Skies on the Parsec Ink website
“When I grew up in New England, you could just walk outside and look up and see the Milky Way. But when I arrived in Pittsburgh, the sky had started to decline in quality.”
Visit the International Dark Sky Association