Does Pollution Hurt the Visibility of the Northern Lights?

The Northern Lights, also known as Aurora Borealis, a Roman goddess of dawn, is a celestial phenomenon that has captivated human imaginations across generations. So what are the Northern Lights? This is an occurrence that results from the interaction of electrically charged elements from the sun and the earth’s atmosphere.

Traditionally, year-round inhabitants of Fairbanks, Alaska, were treated to the spectacle enshrined in the Northern Lights. These lights can also be viewed from other places, with the Swedish Icehotel getting a notable mention. But some people are left wondering why they cannot see the Northern Lights, especially those in industrial cities.

The Pollution Effect

There is every reason to believe that pollution ruins the visibility of the Northern Lights. It is undoubtedly easy to understand the pollution connection if you know what are the northern lights and their workings. As evidenced by the fact that people living in locations away from light pollution can experience the surreal Aurora. However, major cities, those with thousands of cars and industrial centers, belch all manner of effluents into the atmosphere that hurt your visibility.

While most countries have set serious measures to curb pollution, light contamination often takes a back seat. With cities constantly adding streetlights, urban dwellers do not stand a chance of experiencing the Aurora. Dark skies, free from air pollution, are particularly favored for Aurora watching.

Final Thoughts

Air and light pollution is to blame for the lack of clarity of the Northern Lights in major cities. As such, the best Aurora experience is at a place away from the city, preferably when enjoying your stay at the Icehotel in Sweden.