Sustainability Over Tradition as Paris Turns Out the Lights

France's Environment Ministry has decreed that as of July, all shops and offices in the country will be required to shut off their lights at night in order to save energy and “reduce the print of artificial lighting on the nocturnal environment.”
January 31, 2013, 5am PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
Share Tweet LinkedIn Email Comments

"France is proud of its lights. Tourists cherish the Christmas illuminations on the Champs-Élysées, the 20,000 flashing bulbs on the Eiffel Tower and the bright, imaginative shop windows of large department stores like Printemps and Galeries Lafayette," says Maia de la Baume. "But France has decided to be 'a pioneer' in preventing light pollution, said Delphine Batho, the environment minister."

"Under the new law, the interior lights of nonresidential buildings will have to be turned off an hour after the last worker leaves, and lights on building facades and in shop windows will have to be extinguished by 1 a.m."

Will the City of Lights have to give up its moniker to, say, Philadelphia? Baume says that major attractions like the Eiffel Tower will remain lighted. Plus, there's no mention in the article that street lights will have to be turned off, so Paris's nocturnal yellow glow should continue. So Philly, it appears you'll have to continue to be associated with these emblems for the time being.

Full Story:
Published on Wednesday, January 30, 2013 in The New York Times
Share Tweet LinkedIn Email