The UK’s efforts to bring coronavirus under control appear to have led to a significant reduction in light pollution levels compared with the start of 2020, when offices and other workplaces were still open, according to a nationwide star count.
CPRE, the countryside charity, asked amateur astronomers to count the number of stars they could spot making up the Orion constellation on a clear night in February in order to gauge visibility, commenting afterwards – perhaps inevitably – that the findings were “stellar”.
The citizen stargazers taking part provided more than 8,000 results collated between 6 and 14 February, with 51 per cent of respondents noting 10 or fewer stars, an indication of severe light pollution, but this is a 10-percentage-point drop on the 61 per cent recorded in February 2020.
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