Look Below
International Initiative in Defence of the Quality of the Night Sky as Mankind’s Scientific, Cultural and Environmental Heritage

Where the Earth meets the Universe

International Workshop and Expert Meeting

La Palma (Canary Islands


Starlight Workshop

Close to the finalisation of the International Year of Astronomy, the aim of this open workshop is to make us think over the important progress made in night sky defence and preservation of the associated cultural, scientific and environmental heritage, as well as the objectives and challenges of future beyond IYA 2009.

Expert Meeting

After the Fuerteventura meeting (Starlight Reserves and World Heritage: Scientific, Cultural and Environmental Values, April 2009), and taking into account the Kazan recommendations (UNESCO-IAU Conference on Astronomy and World Heritage, August 2009), the group of experts was convened with the aim to go forward on the identification of case studies, contents and proposals of natural areas, nightscapes and exceptional sites for astronomical observation that should be included in the World Heritage List. The second objective has been to analyse and propose coordination, dissemination and networking actions to promote the defence of star-related cultural, scientific and natural heritage, and of those places that can be promoted as starlight and dark sky reserves.

Sessions and Presentations...>

Main references

“An unpolluted night sky that allows the enjoyment and contemplation of the firmament should be considered an inalienable right of humankind equivalent to all other environmental, social, and cultural rights, due to its impact on the development of all peoples and on the conservation of biodiversity.”
Declaration in Defence of the Night Sky and the Right to Starlight. La Palma, Spain 2007.

“The meeting encouraged States Parties to develop appropriate frameworks for the protection of dark skies, and where these are in place to implement and respect them. Where legally protected Starlight Reserves are already in place States Parties should ensure local level efficient management and enforcement of criteria covering the wider tourism experience, the local inhabitants, climate change, cultural, astronomical, and natural issues, noting that failure to do so may result in withdrawal of reserve status”.
Starlight Reserves and World Heritage International Workshop and Expert Meeting. Fuerteventura, Spain 2009.

“Protection of the astronomical quality of areas suitable for scientific observation of the Universe should be taken into account when developing and evaluating national and international scientific and environmental policies, with due regard to local cultural and natural values”.
RESOLUTION B5 in Defence of the Night Sky and the Right to Starlight. IAU General Assembly 2009. Rio de Janeiro. Brazil.

Other related conferences

Third International Starlight Conference - 2012

Lake Tekapo, New Zealand - 11,12 and 13 June 2012

whiti mai ngā whetū

10 ...

Starlight Reserves and World Heritage - Fuerteventura 2009

International Workshop and Expert Meeting

Fuerteventura (Canary Islands), 10-11 March 2009 ...
Starlight Conference 2007
World Conference in Defence of the Night Sky and the Right to Observe the Stars..... ...


More information




Starlight Initiative collaborates with the


Starlight Finder

Starlight related links


Covenant of Mayors Related Initiative


Colaborating with IAU Working Group


IUCN Dark Sky Advisory Group


Dark Skies Awareness Project


Partnership Unesco-MaB


Member of the Knowledge Network


Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias

The Starlight Initiative is designed as an international action in defence of the values associated with the night sky and the general right to observe the stars. It is open to the participation of all scientific, cultural, environmental, and citizens' organizations...

In partnership with:

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