Monday 12th April 2021 @ 7pm

    DARK SKY Ireland - National Event - Voices for Dark Skies

    A networking event to raise awareness of light pollution in Ireland and to encourage advocacy and support for Dark Sky groups on the island.

    This Dark Sky Ireland event features presentations from:

    Sue Callaghan - National Parks & Wildlife Service
    Daragh Quill - Roads Management Office
    Bettymaya Foott - International Dark Sky Association
    Niall Smith - MTU Blackrock Castle Observatory

    This event is jointly hosted by Cork Sky Friendly Campaign and the Friends of Mayo Dark Skies and is open to all to join the discussion.

    Programme

    Event welcome and introduction by Georgia MacMillan with a brief overview of the growing network in Ireland and the challenges we collectively face.  She will present on the recently launched Newport Lighting Master Plan - a community driven lighting initiative and case study for Ireland.  

    Georgia is Mayo Dark Sky Park Development Officer and a founder member of Mayo Dark Skies Community Group.  As an advocate for dark skies, she has recently been invited to join the International Committee of International Dark Sky Association. International Committee will report directly to the IDA Board of Directors as a voice for the broad global community of dark sky champions on how the IDA can best support their needs.

    How to connect with IDA's global dark sky network

    Bettymaya Foott – Director of Engagement at the International Dark Sky Association

    Bettymaya graduated from the University of Utah with an H.B.S. in Environmental and Sustainability Studies. Her dark sky career began with working for Utah State Parks starting 12 International Dark-Sky Park Applications across the state. She then worked as Coordinator for the Colorado Plateau Dark Sky Cooperative and the Consortium for Dark Sky Studies at the University of Utah. Now, she is incredibly excited to be on the team at IDA as Director of Engagement. When off the clock, Foott loves to practice night sky photography. Preserving dark skies is her life goal and she is incredibly excited to continue this journey of saving the stars!

    Instagram: @bettymaya.foott
    Website: bettymayafoott.com
    IDA: @idadarksky darksky.org

    “National Guidance on lighting for ecologically sensitive area”

    With Susan Callaghan

    Irish National policy and guidance on lighting in ecologically sensitive areas is lacking. I hope to ‘shine a light’ on some of these areas and consider how national guidance and ecological assessment can become robust and appropriate measures to ensure that lighting impacts are minimised on the natural world.

    About Susan

    Susan Callaghan works as Divisional Ecologist with the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS), Dept. of Housing, Local Government and Heritage. She has worked with NPWS in the roles of Education Officer, Conservation Ranger, District Conservation Officer and has been Divisional Ecologist in the Western Division since 2019. She has been based in the Mayo area for the past 20 years and has been involved in the management of Wild Nephin Ballycroy National Park and the establishment of Mayo Dark Sky Park. Her current role as Divisional Ecologist focuses primarily on ecological assessment and providing advice on the implications of works such as infrastructure development, capital projects and farm activities on nature conservation from landscape to farm level including implications for European designated sites and protected species.

    National Public Lighting Energy Efficiency Project

    Presented by Daragh Quill

    Daragh Quill is a local authority engineer who is leading a shared service team with the Road Management Office (RMO) who’s role was to develop a business case which identified options for local authorities to achieve energy savings targets while also meeting other local authority public lighting service efficiency objectives. He subsequently led the RMO team to project manage and coordinate the sector into delivering the PLEEP (Public Lighting Energy Efficiency Project) into regionalised contracts. He has thirty years experience working for engineering consultants delivering a wide variety of transport infrastructure projects in particular relating to bridge structures. From 2007 - 2016 he was TII (Transport Infrastructure Ireland) regional bridge manager for the South West region.

    The Future can't be Bright

    Niall Smith – Blackrock Castle Observatory

    The advent of large numbers of satellites, rocket parts and general debris in low earth orbit is accelerating light pollution in a whole new way. In this talk I argue that developments in low earth orbit do not mean the inevitable destruction of pristine skies. We can have the societal and scientific benefits that new technologies bring without sacrificing heritage, culture and beauty. But we need to work together so the future isn't bright.

    About Niall

    Niall is the Founder-Director of the internationally award-winning Blackrock Castle Observatory. In 2017, Niall was the host Director for the International Space University Space Studies Programme which is the largest conference programme ever to come to Cork, lasting a total of 9 weeks and involving over 320 global space experts. Niall’s research focuses on space topics including ultra high precision photometry and the uses of small satellites in low earth orbit for a wide range of functions from high resolution imaging to space cybersecurity to rural broadband. He was the Higher Education representative on the National Steering Group for the Irish Government’s recently published Space Strategy for Enterprise and considers Space 4.0 to be a significant opportunity for the Irish business community.

    The advent of large numbers of satellites, rocket parts and general debris in low earth orbit is accelerating light pollution in a whole new way. In this talk I argue that developments in low earth orbit do not mean the inevitable destruction of pristine skies. We can have the societal and scientific benefits that new technologies bring without sacrificing heritage, culture and beauty. But we need to work together so the future isn't bright.

    https://www.facebook.com/BlackrockCastleObservatory

    https://twitter.com/blackrockcastle

    Welcome to Mayo Dark Sky Park. Mayo is now home to Ireland’s first International Dark Sky Park, showcasing some of the darkest, most pristine skies in the world.

    Where the darkest skies reveal the brightest stars.

    CONTACT INFO

    Ballycroy National Park Visitor Centre,
    National Parks & Wildlife Service,
    Ballycroy Village,
    Co. Mayo

    +353 (0)98 49 888



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