Light Pollution Impairs Military Readiness
 

Basically, here in the US we are having problems simulating nighttime conditions found in other places in the world.   Our future soldiers are growing up in environments where true darkness does not exist.

Military working to ban LED Billboards from flight paths  Bossier City, LA

Statement from the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense (Readiness)      "In southern California, Marines from Camp Pendleton can no longer conduct certain helicopter night training operations on their own base, due to light pollution from bisecting Interstate 5 and surrounding development.  To accomplish this training, they now fly over 110 miles to Twenty-nine Palms in the Mojave Desert, approximately a one-hour and fifteen minute round trip.  Work-arounds like these, while sometimes necessary, impose great strains on testing and training and are unacceptable as a status quo."

Fort Brag, NC  Full Document "The "Living in Harmony with Fort Bragg and Pope AFB" Joint Land Use Study (May 2003) identified light pollution as having a potentially negative impact on the future integrity of Fort Bragg as a viable military training facility and on the region as a whole."  "The growing trespass of light pollution in the skies over Fort Bragg poses a threat that may eventually render night training exercises impractical and unrealistic." STUDY "Increasing levels of light pollution and sky-glow in the Fort Bragg region may soon exceed acceptable limits for realistic military training exercises that require total darkness."

Fort Bullis, TX "County commissioners stepped in Tuesday to require that new development in county territory within 3 miles of Camp Bullis use lighting that would limit glare threatening the night training of Army medics."
Comal County Creates Dark Zone Around Camp Bullis

Westside Airfield, FL "...the Navy fears encroachment on the site because of light pollution: the field can't simulate a nighttime landing if nearby buildings illuminate the area."

US Army Corps of Engineers Report - Ambient Light Encroachment at Military Installations

Fort Benning, GA "Light Pollution is another encroachment issue facing Fort Benning." MORE "The sky glow associated with these lights, high humidity, and low cloud decks can render large areas unsuitable for night training."

Scott AFB, IL "It is within these areas of darkness that the military can effectively conduct night time training activities
without interference from residential light pollution."


Camp Banding, FL; Fort Bliss, TX  "Light pollution, or photo-pollution, is excess or obtrusive light created by humans. Lights generated at night from nearby development can interfere with Fort Campbell’s critical night operations training. Extensive photo-pollution eliminates the Army’s critical training advantage. If left unchecked, changes in land use and increased photopollution associated with the region’s growth will ultimately result in the degradation of Fort Campbell’s military training and deployment capabilities." 

Night Training required Dark Skies - Military Report "urban night lights impacting night training exercises."

Fort AP Hill, VA Article "A. P. Hill's night vision laboratory does a lot of sensitive training, he says, "and you can't operate where there's a lot of light.""

Oceana Naval Air Station "The Navy has long pushed for a new landing field, citing light pollution and scheduling overload at both Oceana Naval Air Station and at its current facility at Fentress in Chesapeake."

Silver Bell AHP Training Area, AZ "Key Concerns - Light Pollution (impacts on Night Vision Goggles)"

Army Compatible Use Buffers Program Region IV 

Florida Military Base Encroachment Issues & Planning "Goal:  Light pollution, the upward and outward distribution of light, either directly from fixtures or from reflection off the ground or other surfaces can interfere with military installation mission activities such as night time training activities, low level flight operations and training, aviator’s vision (causing pilot confusion with landing approach flight patterns or with night vision instrumentation or equipment)."

California Joint Land Use Study "Light pollution and excessive glare can have negative impacts on military operations in the R-2508 Complex, as well as on the natural environment and local communities."

Fort Campbell, KY "Lights generated at night from nearby development can interfere with Fort Campbell’s
critical night operations training. Extensive photo-pollution eliminates the Army’s critical training advantage. If left unchecked, changes in land use and increased photopollution associated with the region’s growth will ultimately result in the degradation of Fort Campbell’s military training and deployment capabilities.  "


DOD Range Sustainability Report, 2006 "Expanded buffers to prevent off-base “light pollution” have become more important as the military has increased its nighttime training operations."

DOD UFC - Design: Interior and Exterior Lighting

Fort Riley, KS "...the increased importance of night training all affect Fort Riley’s interactions with its physical surroundings."

Both Whiteman AFB and Fort Leonard Wood are engaged in nighttime training activities. MO