Night Earth

Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast)

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Abidjan is the economic capital and largest city of Côte d'Ivoire, with an estimated population of over 5 million inhabitants. It is a vibrant city with a rich cultural heritage, lively nightlife, and bustling economic activity. However, like many large cities around the world, Abidjan suffers from light pollution, which affects not only its night sky but also the health of its residents and the local environment.

Light pollution is the excessive or misdirected artificial light that causes a sky glow, interferes with astronomical observations, and affects wildlife and human health. In Abidjan, light pollution is a significant problem due to the city's high population density, rapid urbanization, and intense commercial and industrial activities. According to the World Atlas of Artificial Night Sky Brightness, Abidjan has a light pollution level of about 21.73 magnitudes per square arcsecond, which is considered moderately high.

One of the major contributors to light pollution in Abidjan is street lighting. The city has a vast network of streetlights that remain illuminated throughout the night, even in areas with low traffic and few pedestrians. Many of these streetlights are poorly designed and emit light in all directions, rather than being directed downwards where it is needed. This results in light spillage and glare, which can be harmful to human health and disrupt wildlife behavior.

Another significant source of light pollution in Abidjan is commercial and industrial activities. The city is home to numerous factories, businesses, and markets that operate late into the night, illuminating their premises with bright lights that shine upwards and outwards. This excessive use of lighting not only contributes to light pollution but also wastes energy and increases the cost of electricity.

Despite the challenges posed by light pollution, Abidjan remains a bustling and vibrant city that attracts visitors from around the world. Some of its most notable landmarks include the St. Paul's Cathedral, the Plateau district, the Abidjan Central Mosque, the Banco National Park, and the Abidjan Mall. These landmarks are often illuminated at night, adding to the city's vibrant atmosphere and providing a beautiful sight to behold.

Additionally, Abidjan has a lively nightlife scene with numerous bars, clubs, and restaurants that remain open late into the night. Many of these establishments are illuminated with colorful lights that add to the city's festive ambiance. However, these lights contribute significantly to the city's light pollution and have a negative impact on the environment and human health.

Overall, Abidjan is a fascinating and lively city that suffers from moderate light pollution. The main sources of light pollution in the city are street lighting, commercial and industrial activities, and nightlife establishments. Although light pollution is a significant challenge, Abidjan remains a vibrant and dynamic city that offers a unique experience to visitors and residents alike.