Iceland Chooses Darkness

October 8th, 2006 | Posted by paul in Uncategorized

auroraThis is poetic.

The lights are going out in Iceland this week so people can gaze at the night sky. 

Authorities in the capital Reykjavik will turn off street lights on Thursday evening and people are also being encouraged to sit in their houses in the dark, writer Andri Snaer Magnason said on Wednesday. While the lights are out, an astronomer will describe the night sky over national radio.

The event is part of a film festival taking place on the small north Atlantic island, which gets most of its electricity from abundant thermal energy. The lights are due to go off at 10 p.m. (2200 GMT), about two hours after nightfall, for half an hour.

Magnason said the capital’s population of around 250,000 might be able to see the Northern Lights, a flickering curtain of light often seen in northern climes which is caused by solar particles being caught in the Earth’s magnetic field. Two other Icelandic towns will also turn off their lights.

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