Oregon Dark Sky Brightness Update #6

Oregon Dark Sky Sites

Every few months, the IDA Oregon Chapter puts out their most recent report about how the previous few months have progressed from a light pollution perspective. We previously covered the 5th report, therefore, with the 6th report, this will be covering some of the big changes in the work and Oregon Dark skies. Please note that all quotes and figures come from the report, they are not our own original work.

What we see is that trends show that as the IDA Oregon Chapter says “the processed data show increases of 5% to 7% per year for SQM sites in expanding cities in central Oregon. Other peripheral SQM sites show increases of 2% to 4% per year, while remote sites tend to show little to no change in zenith skyglow per year.”

This is important as what we see is that the sites such as Cottonwood Canyon State Park, Prineville Reservoir State Park, and other familiar places remaining dark skies. And while some of these sites change places with such other for which is darker, the differences for some of these darker sites is minimal.

Figure 1 Showing Darkness

Changes of Skyglow over Time

Moreover, the values from the previous report, to provide 1.5 years of data to examine trends, shows some interesting results.

Figure 2 showing trends

Why is interesting is that sites such as Madeas increased from +3.1% in the past report to +6.9% and that Prineville Reservoir State Park went from -1.8% decrease in light pollution to 0.0%. These increases show that even when working to reduce light pollution, it is still possible for light pollution values to fluctuate over time based upon how the metrics and weather affect things.

To check out the full report, check out the darkskyoregon.org website. Make sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and make sure to view our other unique astronomy sites such as this one for more places to view astronomy in the Pacific Northwest.

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