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By virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution of Virginia in the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, there is hereby officially recognized:

International Dark-Sky Week

WHEREAS, the aesthetic beauty and wonder of a natural night sky is a shared heritage of all humankind, and the experience of standing beneath a starry night sky inspires feelings of wonder and awe, encouraging a growing interest in science and nature, especially among young people and out-of-area visitors within Virginia's local communities; and,

WHEREAS, the greatest number of Dark Sky Parks east of the Mississippi are located in Virginia, and Virginia's national, state, and local parks — including Staunton River, James River, Natural Bridge and Sky Meadows State Parks — are home to dozens of species who rely on undisturbed night environments to thrive; and,

WHEREAS, 80-percent of the world’s population, including many people in Virginia, lives under a dome of light pollution—excessive artificial lighting at night that disrupts natural darkness—and may never experience the visual wonder of living under a dark sky; and,

WHEREAS, light pollution has scientifically-established economic and environmental consequences, which result in significant impacts amounting to roughly $3 billion per year of wasted energy in the United States and contributes to diminished energy security; and,

WHEREAS, the International Dark-Sky Association is the globally-recognized authority on light pollution, and has created International Dark-Sky Week to raise awareness of light pollution, and provide free education, resources, and solutions to the public to encourage the protection of and enjoyment of dark skies and responsible outdoor lighting with the help of Virginia residents coordinating Dark Virginia Sky;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Glenn Youngkin, do hereby recognize April 22-30, 2022 as INTERNATIONAL DARK-SKY WEEK in the COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of our citizens.