AN OASIS OF NIGHT SKY ON MONT BELLEVUE
To bring the night sky in the heart of the city of Sherbrooke and enable its citizens to see the Milky Way again; that is the main objective of the team behind the creation of an oasis of starry sky on mount Bellevue.
Protecting the night, inside the city
Led by Johanne Roby and Martin Aubé, teachers at the CÉGEP de Sherbrooke, and their team of passionate students, this night sky protection project aims to integrate the safeguarding of the night time environment within the establishment of the nature preserve on mount Bellevue.
Thanks of the the college-university collaboration, aiding school perseverance and academic success, the participating students have the opportunity to take part in a community project that will change the night itself in Sherbrooke.
A scientific approach
The first step is to determine the current state of the nocturnal ecosystem of mount Bellevue. Sky quality measures, light fixtures inventory, nocturnal species survey… all this information is collected and studied to orient the most effective actions to take.
Representatives from CÉGEP de Sherbrooke, Université de Sherbrooke, Bishops’ University and Mont-Mégantic International Dark-Sky Reserve collaborate through various related sub-projects.
A community effort
Through computer simulations and environmental analyzes, it is then possible to predict the impact of different lighting conversion scenarios. Hydro-Sherbrooke, responsible for the city's public lighting and an essential partner in the project, is therefore able to concentrate its lighting replacement actions in priority streets and neighborhoods. The positive impact of these conversions will therefore be maximized for the surroundings of Mount Bellevue, while having no budgetary impact for the city.
The participation of neighbouring ring residents is also called upon. Through the project, residents are sensitized about the issues and invited to adopt new outdoor lighting practices. Light bulbs specially designed by one of the project teams are freely offered to help them.
A protected place
By integrating the protection of the starry sky in the core principles of the Mont-Bellevue Nature Reserve, the project will enable citizens to admire the stars and the Milky Way from the territory of the city, while ensuring nocturnal species a environment of sufficient quality