An international team of researchers has released the new World Atlas of Artificial Sky Brightness, which shows that the Milky Way is hidden from one third of humanity due to light pollution. Using high-resolution satellite data and precision sky brightness measurements, the team assessed the impact of light pollution on humans as well as wildlife. According to them, 80% of Americans have not seen the Milky Way. Chris Elvidge, a scientist with NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information in Boulder, Colorado, says, “It's a big part of our connection to the cosmos -- and it's been lost.” The atlas suggests that light pollution is at its peak in countries like Singapore, Italy and South Korea, while Canada, Australia, Scotland, Sweden, and Norway retain the darkest sky. The unnatural light affects not only the study of night sky but also the nocturnal life of insects and animals. The researchers hope that the latest data will create more awareness about reducing light pollution.
Read more in Science Daily.