Buda Dark Skies & Lighting
For the past several years, the City of Buda has been working towards the goal of becoming a more sustainable community. In 2016, a Sustainability Commission was formed to promote these efforts. One of the highest initiatives identified by the Commission was to become a Dark Sky Community. The designation would recognize the City’s efforts for reducing light pollution.
Because of regional development and growth, we are on the cusp of losing the great natural resource that is our night sky. Our slogan in Buda is “Breathe Easy Here.” It is a way of life that we want to promulgate with our residents and guests. We want our hometown to be a source of relaxation and renewal away from the busyness of the big city. We want future generations to experience the rejuvenation one experiences from staring up at the night sky in the evening. Light pollution disrupts our natural biological rhythms, harming human health and wellness, and is disruptive to wildlife. To that end, the City has worked to meet the requirements of the International Dark Sky Association to become a Dark Sky Certified Community.
The City has developed Outdoor Lighting Standards to reduce light pollution. To view the lighting requirements, visit Section 2.09.12 Lighting of the City's Unified Development Code.
If you are looking to install new outdoor lighting or want to install night-sky friendly lighting, look for the International Dark Sky Association seal when purchasing new lights.
Outdoor lighting should consider the following:
Kelvin: Kelvin is a measure of the "temperature" of the light source. Install lighting that emits a warmer hue such as yellow and amber. Ultra white and blue lighting disrupts our natural biological rhythms and negatively impacts wildlife.
Shielding: Floodlights or barn-style lights cause light pollution. Look for lights that are downward facing and shielded to prevent light from emitting from the sides and top.
Timing: Use outdoor lighting only when needed. Turn off outdoor lights or place them on a timer for hours when they are not used.