International Dark-Sky Association
The International Dark-Sky Association Inc.
Formation1988; 36 years ago (1988)
Founded atUnited States
Legal status501(c)(3)
HeadquartersTucson, Arizona, United States
Board President
Tom Reinert
CEO & Executive Director
Ruskin Hartley
Tom Reinert; Nalayini Brito-Davies; Brad Schlesselman; Ken Walczak; Diane Knutson; Connie Walker; Kevin Gaston Ph.D.; Sibylle Schroer; SergioMontúfar Codoñer; Mike Simmons; Paulina Villalobos; Samyukta Manikumar; Fernando Avila Castro; Doug Barker

The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) is a United States-based non-profit organization incorporated in 1988 by founders David Crawford, a professional astronomer, and Tim Hunter, a physician and amateur astronomer. The mission of the IDA is "to preserve and protect the night time environment and our heritage of dark skies through quality outdoor lighting."[1]

Light pollution is the result of outdoor lighting that is not properly shielded, allowing light shine into the eyes and night sky. Direct light that shines into the eyes is called glare, and light directed into the night sky above the horizon causes skyglow. Lighting can also cause light trespass when it enters areas where unwanted (e.g. a neighbor's yard and windows). IDA was the first organization in the dark-sky movement, and is currently the largest.

Principal approach

IDA's principal approach is to raise awareness about the value of dark, star-filled night skies and encourage their protection and restoration through education about the problems and solutions, including outdoor lighting practices that create less light pollution. In 2011, the organization had about 5,000 members in 70 countries.

International Dark Sky Places

See also: Dark-sky preserve

To promote awareness about the issues, the IDA has an International Dark Sky Places program that aims "to encourage communities, parks and protected areas around the world to preserve and protect dark sites through responsible lighting policies and public education". There are currently five types of designation for International Dark Sky Places: [2]

International Dark Sky Sanctuaries

IDA describes Dark Sky Sanctuaries as "the most remote (and often darkest) places in the world whose conservation state is most fragile".

International Dark Sky Parks

IDA describes Dark Sky Parks as "publicly- or privately-owned spaces protected for natural conservation that implement good outdoor lighting and provide dark sky programs for visitors".

International Dark Sky Reserves

IDA describes Dark Sky Reserves as "dark 'core' zones surrounded by a populated periphery where policy controls are enacted to protect the darkness of the core".

International Dark Sky Communities

IDA describes Dark Sky Communities as "legally organized cities and towns that adopt quality outdoor lighting ordinances and undertake efforts to educate residents about the importance of dark skies".

Urban Night Sky Places

IDA describes Urban Night Sky Places as "sites near or surrounded by large urban environs whose planning and design actively promote an authentic nighttime experience in the midst of significant artificial light at night, and that otherwise do not qualify for designation within any other International Dark Sky Places category".

Fixture Seal of Approval

To promote the use of responsible outdoor lighting that minimizes light pollution, the IDA offers a Fixture Seal of Approval program. The program provides objective, third-party certification for lighting products that minimize glare, reduce light trespass, and do not pollute the night sky.[40]

See also


  1. ^ "IDA Mission & Goals". Archived from the original on March 28, 2009.
  2. ^ "International Dark Sky Places". International Dark-Sky Association. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  3. ^ Maude, Simon (20 August 2017). "Great Barrier Island recognised as a Dark Sky Sanctuary". Stuff. Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  4. ^ "Dark Sky Island | Beaver Island Trails". Retrieved 2022-12-14.
  5. ^ Morris, Steven; Barkham, Patrick (2023-02-23). "Ynys Enlli off Welsh coast designated as a dark sky sanctuary". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2023-02-23.
  6. ^ Valerie Stimack (March 10, 2020). "Pacific Island Niue Becomes The World's First Dark Sky Nation". Forbes. Archived from the original on 11 March 2020.
  7. ^ Carter, Jamie (16 April 2019). "It Takes Two Days To Reach The Latest Super-Remote 'Dark Sky Sanctuary'. Blame Light Pollution". Forbes. Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  8. ^ "New night sky sanctuary tipped to shine a spotlight on Stewart Island". RNZ. 7 January 2019. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  9. ^ Ciampi, Marissa (18 March 2021). "The Best Places for Stargazing Around Australia". Concrete Playground. Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  10. ^ "Big Bend Ranch State Park (U.S.)". International Dark-Sky Association. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  11. ^ "Hovenweep National Monument Named World's Newest International Dark Sky Park" (Press release). Tucson: SBWire. 2014-07-01. Retrieved 2014-07-14.
  12. ^ "Elan Valley Estate gets Dark Sky Status". ITV News. 2015-07-17. Retrieved 2015-07-22.
  13. ^ "Yeongyang Firefly Eco Park (South Korea)". Archived from the original on 2018-05-14. Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  14. ^ "First International Dark Sky Park in Ireland Receives Accreditation". IDA. 5 May 2016. Retrieved 2017-05-06.
  15. ^ "Mayo Dark Sky Park". Retrieved 2017-05-06.
  16. ^ "Warrumbungles Becomes Australia's First 'Dark Sky Park&#039". Archived from the original on 2017-01-23. Retrieved 2016-07-04.
  17. ^ "First Dark Sky Park in Australia Designated". IDA. 2016-07-04.
  18. ^ "2017: Summer Guide to Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park" (PDF). National Park Service. p. 1. Retrieved 2 July 2017.
  19. ^ "Ramon Crater Named First International Dark Sky Place in the Mideast". IDA. 2017-09-14. Retrieved 2018-04-17.
  20. ^ "Fifth International Dark Sky Park in Arizona Designated". IDA. 2017-08-31. Retrieved 2018-04-17.
  21. ^ Craters Of The Moon National Monument (U.S.)
  22. ^ "Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (U.S.)". Archived from the original on 2018-02-26. Retrieved 2018-02-15.
  23. ^ "Great Sand Dunes Designated as International Dark Sky Park". IDA. 2019-05-10. Retrieved 2020-01-17.
  24. ^ "Hehuan Mountain becomes Taiwan's first International Dark Sky Park". IDA. 2019-07-31. Retrieved 2019-08-02.
  25. ^ "El Morro National Monument Certified as an International Dark Sky Park". International Dark-Sky Association. 2019-12-17. Retrieved 2020-01-04.
  26. ^ "Quetico Provincial Park Awarded International Dark Sky Park Designation". 23 February 2021.
  27. ^ "Valles Caldera National Preserve Receives International Dark Sky Park Certification". 3 February 2021.
  28. ^ "City of Rocks National Reserve Achieves International Dark Sky Park Certification". International Dark-Sky Association. 2 February 2023. Retrieved 24 February 2023.
  29. ^ "Aenos National Park named first International Dark Sky Park in Greece". DarkSky International. 9 June 2023.
  30. ^ Gibson, Jacqui (3 August 2021). "'There's drama Everywhere': Dark Sky adventure at Takapō". New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  31. ^ "The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA)". International Dark-Sky Association. 7 November 2019. Retrieved 1 July 2020.
  32. ^ "Wairarapa Dark Sky Reserve (New Zealand)". International Dark-Sky Association. Retrieved 23 May 2023.
  33. ^ "Isle of Coll secures 'dark isle' status". BBC News. 9 December 2013. Retrieved 9 December 2013.
  34. ^ Keagle, Lauri Harvey (2014-06-25). "Beverly Shores named world's seventh Dark Sky Community". NWI Times. Retrieved 2014-06-25.
  35. ^ Heinsius, Ryan (2014-08-05). "Sedona Becomes the Newest International Dark Sky Community". KNAU. Retrieved 2014-08-05.
  36. ^ "Two Colorado Towns Come Together as Colorado's First International Dark Sky Community status" (PDF). IDA. 9 March 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 9 March 2015.
  37. ^ "Thunder Mountain Pootsee Nightsky (U.S.)". Archived from the original on 2015-07-31. Retrieved 2015-08-16.
  38. ^ "Alberta Town Named First International Dark Sky Community In Canada". International Dark-Sky Association. August 12, 2015. Retrieved August 15, 2015.
  39. ^ "International Dark Sky Association". International Dark-Sky Association. Retrieved 2023-01-26.
  40. ^ "Fixture Seal of Approval". International Dark-Sky Association. 2014-09-04. Retrieved 2020-01-29.