Presentation #216.06 in the session Recent Successes in Dark Skies Preservation: Flagstaff and Beyond (1).
Voters, as well as the officials they elect, protect what they value. Collectively, we value what we know. And what we know, in the end, is what we’ve experienced. Flagstaff vice mayor Austin Aslan grew up under Arizona’s starry nights and learned through experience to cherish dark skies. In order to protect our remaining dark skies, and envision a future in which we’ve actually reduced current levels of light pollution everywhere, we must cultivate on-going generations of stargazers. The task may not be as difficult as we fear. Dark skies in Flagstaff is a major economic engine. Flagstaff’s tourism industry and business communities recognize the monetary value of stargazing and astronomy. Dark skies aren’t just for professionals, and this endangered resource can absolutely become a valued part of any municipality’s identity. Austin will discuss strategies that work in Flagstaff to promote dark skies and facilitates an opportunity for horizontal learning and sharing of best practices across our varied communities.