Light Pollution

Night is certainly more novel and less profane than day.
–Henry David Thoreau

One of the most visually conspicuous changes to the globe in the past hundred years has been the spread of dusk-to-dawn electric lighting at night.  Dr. Longcore has investigated the effects of artificial light at night for nearly 20 years, starting with Catherine Rich in the late 1990s in a successful effort to stop a proposal to light a bridge in Los Angeles with beams pointed straight up into the sky, after which they organized the first international conference on Ecological Consequences of Artificial Night Lighting in 2002.  The conference led to the landmark paper “Ecological Light Pollution” in 2004 and the book Ecological Consequences of Artificial Night Lighting in 2006.

Current Projects

Coast Light: Actionable Science to Manage Coastal Nightscapes, Sea Grant

Park Light: Light Pollution in National Park Service Units in the Mediterranean Network, 2014–2017, Santa Monica Mountains Fund

Park Light Habitat-Specific Light Pollution Measurements in the Mediterranean Network of National Parks, Santa Monica Mountains Fund

Publications

Longcore, T., A. Rodríguez, B. Witherington, J. Penniman, L. Herf, and M. Herf. 2018. Rapid assessment of lamp spectrum to quantify ecological effects of light at night. Journal of Experimental Zoology A.

Donners, M., R. H. A. van Grunsven, D. Groenendijk, F. van Langevelde, J. W. Bikker, T. Longcore, and E. Veenendaal. Colours of attraction: a general model for insect phototaxis. 2018. Journal of Experimental Zoology A.

Gillespie, T. W., K. S. Willis, S. Ostermann-Kelm, T. Longcore, F. Federico, L. Lee, and G. M. MacDonald. 2017. Inventorying and monitoring night light distribution and dynamics in the Mediterranean Coast Network of Southern California. Natural Areas Journal 37(3):500-510.

Longcore, T., and C. Rich. 2016. Artificial night lighting and protected lands: ecological effects and management approaches. Natural Resource Report NPS/NRSS/NSNS/NRR—2016/1213. National Park Service, Fort Collins, Colorado, 51 pp.

Longcore, T., and C. Rich. 2016. Ecological and organismic effects of light pollution. eLS: Citable Reviews in the Life Sciences doi: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0026328.

Swaddle, J. P., C. D. Francis, J. R. Barber, C. Cooper, C. C. M. Kyba, D. M. Dominoni, G. Shannon, E. Aschehoug, S. Goodwin, A. Y. Kawahara, D. Luther, K. Spoelstra, M. Voss, and T. Longcore. 2015. A framework to assess evolutionary responses to anthropogenic light and sound. Trends in Ecology and Evolution doi: 10.1016/j.tree.2015.06.009.

Longcore, T., Aldern, H. J. Eggers, S. Flores, L. Franco, E. Hirshfield-Yamanishi, L. Petrinec, W. Yan, and A. Barroso. 2015. Tuning the white light spectrum of LEDs to reduce attraction of nocturnal arthropods. Philosophical Transactions B doi: 10.1098/rstb.2014.0125.

Longcore, T., C. Rich, P. Mineau, B. MacDonald, D. Bert, L. M. Sullivan, E. Mutrie, S. A. Gauthreaux Jr., M. L. Avery, R. L. Crawford, A. M. Manville II, E. R. Travis, and D. Drake. 2013. Avian mortality at communication towers in the United States and Canada: which species, how many, and where? Biological Conservation 158:410-419.

Longcore, T., C. Rich, P. Mineau, B. MacDonald, D. Bert, L. M. Sullivan, E. Mutrie, S. A. Gauthreaux Jr., M. L. Avery, R. L. Crawford, A. M. Manville II, E. R. Travis, and D. Drake 2012. An estimate of avian mortality at communication towers in the United States and Canada. PLoS ONE 7(4):e34025.

Rodrigues, P., C. Aubrecht, A. Gil, T. Longcore, and C. Elvidge. 2012. Remote sensing to map influence of light pollution on Cory’s shearwater in São Miguel Island, Azores Archipelago. European Journal of Wildlife Research58:147-155.

Longcore, T., and C. Rich. 2010. Light pollution and ecosystems. ActionBioscience.org original article.

Aubrecht, C. M. Stojan-Dolar, A. de Sherbinin, M. Jaiteh, T. Longcore, and C. Elvidge. 2010. Lighting governance for protected areas and beyond – Identifying the urgent need for sustainable management of artificial light at night. Earthzine.

Longcore, T. 2010. Sensory ecology: night lights alter reproductive behavior of blue tits [invited Dispatch]. Current Biology 20(20):R893-R895.

Aubrecht, C., C. Elvidge, T. Longcore, C. Rich, J. Safran, A. Strong, M. Eakin, K. E. Baugh, B. Tuttle, P. J. Hayes, A. T. Howard, and E. H. Erwin. 2008. A global inventory of development, gas flaring, and fishing proximity to coral reefs. Geocarto International 23(6):467-479. (Press release in English, Spanish, Korean; coverage in Conservation Magazine online, and Oceanography).

Aubrecht, C., C. D. Elvidge, D. Ziskin, T. Longcore, and C. Rich. 2008. “When the lights stay on” – A novel approach to assessing human impact on the environment. Earthzine.

Longcore, T., C. Rich, and S. A. Gauthreaux, Jr. 2008. Height, guy wires, and steady-burning lights increase hazard of communication towers to nocturnal migrants: a review and meta-analysis. Auk 125(2):486–493.

Elvidge, C.D., P. Cinzano, J. Arvesen, P. Sutton, C. Small, R. Nemani, T. Longcore, C. Rich, J. Weeks, and S. Ebener. 2007. The Nightsat mission concept. International Journal of Remote Sensing 28(12):2645–2670.

Longcore, T., and C. Rich. 2007. Lights out! For nature. Pp. 165–171 in C. Marín and J. Jafari (eds.), StarLight: a common heritage. StarLight Initiative La Palma Biosphere Reserve, Instituto De Astrofísica De Canarias, Government of The Canary Islands, Spanish Ministry of The Environment, UNESCO – MaB., Canary Islands, Spain.

Rich, C. and T. Longcore. (eds.). 2006. Ecological consequences of artificial night lighting. Island Press, Washington, D.C.

Nightingale, B., T. Longcore, and C. A. Simenstad. 2006. Artificial night lighting and fishes. Pages 257–276 in C. Rich and T. Longcore (eds.). Ecological consequences of artificial night lighting. Island Press, Washington, D.C.

Rich, C., and T. Longcore. 2006. Introduction. Pages 1–13 in C. Rich and T. Longcore (eds.). Ecological consequences of artificial night lighting. Island Press, Washington, D.C.

Longcore, T., and C. Rich. 2006. Synthesis. Pages 413–430 in C. Rich and T. Longcore (eds.). Ecological consequences of artificial night lighting. Island Press, Washington, D.C.

Longcore, T., and C. Rich. 2004. Ecological light pollution. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 2(4):191–198.