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November 7, 2003 2:47 PM

Stars - the Wild Duck clusterMany Britons will miss out on this weekend's lunar eclipse because the night sky will be hidden by increasing light pollution, according to the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE).

Norman Baker MP, Liberal Democrat Shadow Environment Secretary, has called on the Government to clamp down on serious light polluters.

He said:

"Light pollution is a huge problem for Britain. It is very sad that the night sky is being lost to the modern generation and very worrying that so much energy is being wasted, adding to CO2 emissions.

"The Government needs to clamp down on unnecessary lighting, especially in rural and sensitive locations.

"Where lights are used for security reasons, trip-lighting should be encouraged as a less-polluting alternative. Where lights are used for advertising, the Government should ban their use if the business advertised is not open. And where new external lighting is introduced, the light must point downwards and not be allowed to spill upwards.

"These simple measures could go a long way to enhancing the enjoyment of the night sky for everyone, and reducing wasted energy."

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