Recently, many sports stadiums have begun using high power lighting systems to help the grass grow on the playing surfaces. These lights supplement winter sunlight, which is sometimes insufficient due to the low elevation of the sun and shading from the surrounding walls. In many stadiums, grow lights are operated at night, and the waste light emissions from these stadiums are extraordinary in comparison to most other areas in the cities in which they are located. Here we present space-based observations of the radiance of fourteen stadiums located in towns and cities of varying sizes and in varying geographical locations across England which each have a Premier League football stadium. We show that stadiums have dramatically brightened (typically by factors of 2-5) in recent years compared to the situation in 2012. We also show that stadiums are often responsible for an important fraction of the total light emission of the cities they are in (often 10% or more, and in one case up to 30%). Because the light emissions from many English towns have been reducing in recent years, the overall fraction of light due to the stadiums is increasing. In some cases, total city emissions have actually increased due to the stadiums, undermining the environmental impact of reductions in radiance in the rest of the community. We believe that stadium grow lights are an excellent target for sustainable lighting initiatives, both because of their considerable environmental impact (especially when located near sensitive areas) and the possibility of high profile and successful waste light mitigation projects.
Agricultural lighting, Remote sensing, Sports lighting, Supplemental lighting, VIIRS DNB
2. Aubé, M. (2015). Physical behaviour of anthropogenic light propagation into the nocturnal environment. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences. Département de physique, Cégep de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada: Royal Society. https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2014.0117
3. Morgan Taylor, M. (2006). Light Pollution and Nuisance: The Enforcement Guidance for Light as a Statutory Nuisance. Journal of Planning & Environmental Law.
4. Meier, J. (2018). Contentious Light: An Analytical Framework for Lighting Conflicts. International Journal of Sustainable Lighting. Department of Urban and Regional Planning, Technische Universität Berlin, Germany; josiane.meier(at)tu-berlin.de: IJSL.
5. Reuters. (2016, June 17). State of pitches prompts concern at Uefa after bad weather in France. The Guardian. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/football/2016/jun/17/pitches-euros-concern-france-uefa
6. UEFA. (2017). Pitch Perfect. UEFA Direct, 167, 12–19.
7. Fifa. (2010). Manager’s Guide to Natural Grass Football Pitches.
8. Miller, S., Straka, W., Mills, S., Elvidge, C., Lee, T., Solbrig, J., … Weiss, S. (2013). Illuminating the Capabilities of the Suomi National Polar-Orbiting Partnership (NPP) Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) Day/Night Band. Remote Sensing. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs5126717
9. Elvidge, C. D., Baugh, K. E., Zhizhin, M., & Hsu, F.-C. (2013). Why VIIRS data are superior to DMSP for mapping nighttime lights. Proceedings of the Asia-Pacific Advanced Network. https://doi.org/10.7125/APAN.35.7
10. Coesfeld, J., Kuester, T., Kuechly, H. U., & Kyba, C. C. M. (2020). Reducing Variability and Removing Natural Light from Nighttime Satellite Imagery: A Case Study Using the VIIRS DNB. Sensors. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20113287
11. Coesfeld, Jacqueline, Kuester, Theres, Kuechly, Helga U., & Kyba, Christopher C.M. (2020). Background correction for EOG VIIRS-DNB monthly composites (data and scripts). GFZ Data Services. https://doi.org/10.5880/GFZ.1.4.2020.003
12. Sanchez de Miguel, A., Kyba, C. C. M., Zamorano, J., Gallego, J., & Gaston, K. J. (2020). The nature of the diffuse light near cities detected in nighttime satellite imagery. Scientific Reports. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-64673-2
13. Coesfeld, J., Anderson, S., Baugh, K., Elvidge, C., Schernthanner, H., & Kyba, C. (2018). Variation of Individual Location Radiance in VIIRS DNB Monthly Composite Images. Remote Sensing. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs10121964
14. Elvidge, C. D., Hsu, F.-C., Zhizhin, M., Ghosh, T., Taneja, J., & Bazilian, M. (2020). Indicators of Electric Power Instability from Satellite Observed Nighttime Lights. Remote Sensing. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs12193194
15. Tong, K. P., Kyba, C. C. M., Heygster, G., Kuechly, H. U., Notholt, J., & Kolláth, Z. (2020). Angular distribution of upwelling artificial light in Europe as observed by Suomi–NPP satellite. Journal of Quantitative Spectroscopy and Radiative Transfer. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jqsrt.2020.107009
16. Sutton, P. C., Elvidge, C. D., & Ghosh, T. (2007). Estimation of gross domestic product at sub-national scales using nighttime satellite imagery. International Journal of Ecological Economics & Statistics.
17. Ghosh, T., Powell, R. L., Elvidge, C. D., Baugh, K. E., Sutton, P. C., & Anderson, S. (2010). Shedding Light on the Global Distribution of Economic Activity. The Open Geography Journal. https://doi.org/10.2174/1874923201003010147
18. Townsend, A. C., & Bruce, D. A. (2010). The use of night-time lights satellite imagery as a measure of Australia’s regional electricity consumption and population distribution. International Journal of Remote Sensing. https://doi.org/10.1080/01431160903261005
19. Kyba, C. C. M., Kuester, T., Sánchez de Miguel, A., Baugh, K., Jechow, A., Hölker, F., … Guanter, L. (2017). Artificially lit surface of Earth at night increasing in radiance and extent. Science Advances. GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences, Potsdam 14473, Germany; kyba(at)gfz-potsdam.de: AAAS. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.1701528
20. Stare, J. (2021, May 6). Radiance Light Trends. Application. Retrieved May 6, 2021, from https://lighttrends.lightpollutionmap.info
21. Stare, J., & Kyba, C. (2019). Radiance Light Trends (p. 5 Files). GFZ Data Services. https://doi.org/10.5880/GFZ.1.4.2019.001
22. Kyba, C. C. M. ., Garz, S., Kuechly, H., de Miguel, A., Zamorano, J., Fischer, J., & Hölker, F. (2015). High-Resolution Imagery of Earth at Night: New Sources, Opportunities and Challenges. Remote Sensing. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs70100001
23. Hölker, F., Moss, T., Griefahn, B., Kloas, W., Voigt, C., & al, et. (2010). The Dark Side of Light: A Transdisciplinary Research Agenda for Light Pollution Policy. Ecol Soc. Retrieved from http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/vol15/iss4/art13/
24. Sánchez de Miguel, A., Bennie, J., Rosenfeld, E., Dzurjak, S., & Gaston, K. J. (2021). First Estimation of Global Trends in Nocturnal Power Emissions Reveals Acceleration of Light Pollution. Remote Sensing, 13(16), 3311. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13163311
25. Brighton & Hove Albion Environmental Statement. (n.d.). Retrieved July 17, 2021, from https://web.archive.org/web/20210717132916/https://www.brightonandhovealbion.com/club/club/environmental-statement/
26. de Freitas, W. (n.d.). Moths expert: match report on Ronaldo insect encounter at Euro 2016 final. Retrieved July 17, 2021, from https://web.archive.org/web/20210717135331/https://theconversation.com/moths-expert-match-report-on-ronaldo-insect-encounter-at-euro-2016-final-62314
27. Ogden, L. J. E. (1996). Collision Course: The Hazards of Lighted Structures and Windows to Migrating Birds. Technical report, World Wildlife Fund Canada and the Fatal Light Awareness Program, Toronto, Canada. Retrieved from http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1002&context=flap
28. Van Doren, B., Horton, K. G., Dokter, A. M., Klinck, H., Elbin, A., S. B. ,. Farnsworth, Dokter, A. M., … Farnsworth, A. (2017). High-intensity urban light installation dramatically alters nocturnal bird migration. Publications of the National Academy of Sciences. Information Science Program, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY 14850 USA; af27(at)cornell.edu: PNAS. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1708574114
29. Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. (2012). Starling population crashes across Europe. Retrieved January 18, 2022, from http://www.rspb.org.uk/our-work/rspb-news/news/318986-starling-population-crashes-across-europe
30. Doren, B. M. V., Willard, D. E., Hennen, M., Horton, K. G., Stuber, E. F., Sheldon, D., … Winger, B. M. (2021). Drivers of fatal bird collisions in an urban center. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 118(24). https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2101666118
31. La Sorte, F. A., Johnston, A., Rodewald, A. D., Fink, D., Farnsworth, A., Van Doren, B. M., … Strimas‐Mackey, M. (2022). The role of artificial light at night and road density in predicting the seasonal occurrence of nocturnally migrating birds. Diversity and Distributions, ddi.13499. https://doi.org/10.1111/ddi.13499
32. Audubon Society. (2022, March 3). Lights Out. Retrieved March 3, 2022, from https://web.archive.org/web/20220303142422/https://www.audubon.org/lights-out-program
33. Falchi, F., Cinzano, P., Duriscoe, D., Kyba, C. C. M., Elvidge, C. D., Baugh, K., … Furgoni, R. (2016). The new world atlas of artificial night sky brightness. Science Advances. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.1600377
34. Gallaway, T. (2010). On Light Pollution, Passive Pleasures, and the Instrumental Value of Beauty. Journal of Economic Issues. https://doi.org/10.2753/JEI0021-3624440104
35. The Guardian. (2022, March 3). South Downs recognised for quality of starry nights. Retrieved March 3, 2022, from https://web.archive.org/web/20220303163015/https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/10/south-downs-recognised-for-quality-of-starry-nights
36. Kalinowski, T. (2021, July 17). Greenhouses causing “light pollution” for planes - Medicine Hat News. Retrieved July 17, 2021, from https://web.archive.org/web/20210717142825/https://medicinehatnews.com/news/local-news/2017/01/14/greenhouses-causing-light-pollution-for-planes/
37. Meadows, C. (2019, November 21). Complaints gain traction regarding greenhouse lighting. LEDs Magazine. Retrieved July 17, 2021, from https://web.archive.org/web/20210717143948mp_/https://www.ledsmagazine.com/horticultural-lighting/article/14072530/complaints-gain-traction-regarding-greenhouse-lighting
38. Zurko, J. (2021, July 17). The Neighbors Are Complaining. Retrieved July 17, 2021, from https://web.archive.org/web/20210717144358/https://www.growertalks.com/Article/?articleid=23643
39. Pattison, P. M., Tsao, J. Y., Brainard, G. C., & Bugbee, B. (2018). LEDs for photons, physiology and food. Nature. Utah State University, Logan, UT, USA. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-018-0706-x
40. This is Premier League: Economic and social impact. (n.d.). Retrieved July 17, 2021, from https://web.archive.org/web/20210717145825/https://www.premierleague.com/news/1562726
41. Meier, J. M. (2019). Contentious Light: An Analytical Framework for Lighting Conflicts (PhD Thesis). Technische Universität Berlin. Retrieved from https://depositonce.tu-berlin.de/handle/11303/9491
42. All-Party Parliamentary Group for Dark Skies. (2022, March 4). APPG for Dark Skies. Retrieved March 4, 2022, from https://web.archive.org/web/20220304093753/https://appgdarkskies.co.uk/
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
All International Journal of Sustainable Lighting (IJSL) content is Open Access, meaning it is accessible online without fee under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0). For any reuse, redistribution, or reproduction of a work, users must clarify the license terms under which the work was produced. Neither the text itself nor the ideas presented in it may be used for commercial purposes.