Preserving Natural Darkness
The dark skies of Moab and the surrounding region are a valuable and rare resource that millions of people throughout the world never get to see. Home to multiple designated International Dark Sky Parks & Places including Arches & Canyonlands National Parks and Natural Bridges & Hovenweep National Monuments. Because of the region’s growth and increase in light pollution, something had to be done. With support from Moab Dark Skies, the Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks, and the National Park Service, the City of Moab and Grand County have updated residential and business outdoor lighting ordinances. This important step to encourage responsible lighting will reduce light pollution without compromising safety, bringing the beauty of night skies closer to home and accessible to all.
To promote the appreciation and preservation of Moab’s unique and rare dark skies . To help instill awareness and appreciation for the region’s dark and star-filled skies, Moab Dark Skies was founded by the Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks in partnership with the National Park Service and the Utah Department of Natural Resources.
- To maintain and preserve the dark skies in the Moab region.
- To encourage night sky friendly lighting for municipal, business, and private use.
- To increase public awareness of the unique resource in Moab’s dark skies.
- To provide dark sky educational opportunities and events for the community.
- To promote the economic benefits of astrotourism in the local economy.
Outdoor Lighting Retrofit Assistance Program
In support of preserving dark skies, the Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks provides financial help and resources to full-time Moab City and Grand County residents so that they may acquire code-compliant exterior lighting fixtures and bulbs for their homes.
The lighting code was researched and rewrittend to encourage lighting practices that will minimize light pollution, glare, light overflow, and sky glow in Moab and the region without compromising your safety and the safety of others.
Night sky behind Owachomo Bridge – Natural Bridges National Monument – Photo Credit: NPS/Jacob W. Frank
Chesler Park – Needles District – Canyonlands National Park – Photo Credit: NPS/Emily Ogden
Friend of the Milky Way Business Program
The Friend of the Milky Way program was created to help businesses come into outdoor lighting compliance with an effective and easy to implement program. To become a Friend of the Milky Way, business owners are encouraged to convert their outdoor lighting to night sky-friendly lighting with assistance from the Friends of Arches and Canyonlands, Moab Dark Skies members, and other organizations.
Businesses are encouraged to promote our night skies by installing compliant lighting and receiving recognition as a “Friend of the Milky Way” business.