Eyes to the Sky: Looking out for Leo, Earth, cosmos and us
These are the final days of Global Astronomy Month. Astronomers Without Borders invites us to celebrate an actual SunDay today by viewing our amazing sun safely, through filtered optics on great telescopes, by going to NASA site The Sun Now.
Earth Day, celebrated last week as life awakens from winter dormancy and the wonder of planet Earth is all the more stirring, reminded us to commit to actions for the care of our shared home. Most of what we must do involves steps to reduce carbon emissions and other sources of life-threatening pollution, including the destructive affects of light pollution. Take one less trip by car each week, travel less or not at all by airplane, and change incandescent light bulbs to energy saving varieties. Wear layers of warm clothing at home and hang wash out to dry to decrease the burning of gas, oil, wood and nuclear directly or as electricity. Buy less, create more. It is crucial to fulfill the maxims: Earth Day Every Day; Refuse, Reuse, Reduce, Recycle; Think Globally, Act Locally. Support population education and social justice, keys to sustainability. We are responsible for Earth's lands, waters, skies.
By locating the constellation Leo the Lion tonight through Tuesday and reporting what you see to Globe at Night, a citizen science initiative, we could help restore starry skies. The lion is recognized by its large head and brightest star, Regulus. Together, they look like a backward question mark in the south-southeast at nightfall. Leo sets in the west around 3 a.m. Find complete directions at Globe At Night.
New Moon will occur Tuesday at 2:14 a.m. The cycle of charming crescents in the west in the late afternoon and early evening begins Wednesday with a wisp of a moon at the west-northwestern edge of the Winter Hexagon, setting with Orion's foot star, Rigel.
To contact Judy Isacoff, go to: www.naturesturn.org
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