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What it takes to become a Dark Sky City

San Antonio already has a policy in place to help reduce light pollution in order to see the night sky, but what if we can go further and get certified?

SATXtoday: San Antonio skyline

Help protect our night sky by decreasing light pollution in your communities.

Photo by Frederick Gonzales

Did you know Fredericksburg became an official Dark Sky City in 2020? This had us thinking, “what is a Dark Sky City and what would it take for San Antonio to become certified?” We’re here to break down the process + learn from our Hill Country neighbors on how to reduce our city’s light pollution and better see the stars.

What is a Dark Sky City?

The International Dark Sky Places was founded in 2001 to encourage communities, parks, reserves, and sanctuaries around the world to preserve + protect dark sites through responsible lighting policies and public education.

Texas proudly has its own chapter, with 22 parks and cities, here’s our closest Dark Sky-certified neighbors:

  • City of Fredericksburg
  • City of Blanco
  • Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Protecting San Antonio’s sky

In order for the Alamo City to become an official Dark Sky City, it has to meet some requirements, starting with you. Here’s a few prerequisites:

  • Ask your community if they want to join a Night Sky Group
  • Participate in a first Wednesday coaching call with Dark Sky Texas
  • Use the Be A Star Award to recognize lighting in your community

In the meantime, San Antonio already has a policy in place to protect our night sky as part of its SA Tomorrow Sustainability Plan. This ordinance was adopted in 2008 and only applies to military bases in the Alamo City.

It all starts with you. Gather a group of friends, family, or neighbors to discuss the benefits of protecting the night sky. Through updating lighting ordinances and sharing your voice with our City Council, San Antonio can become the next International Dark Sky Place.