Light pollution on construction sites: the impact on bees and nocturnal insects

Light pollution is a rapidly growing form of pollution (+ 7% per year, source ARPAV) that disturbs not only humans but also animals and plants.

Among the sources that can cause this type of pollution (public, street, private lights, etc.) there is also the lighting of construction sites.

On one of the construction sites we’ve worked on, we’ve faced the impact of artificial night lights on bees and their ability to produce honey.

Honey bees (Apis mellifera) are diurnal pollinators and their foraging activity depends on solar and celestial signals. Scientific studies show that changes in global horizontal irradiation and in the properties of light can damage their foraging activity.

Through industry experts, we have been called to analyze the potential effect of construction lights on bees and nocturnal insects. We therefore carried out specific monitoring to quantify the possible impact of lights on the activity of bees (in particular on activity at sunset) and nocturnal insects.

Our monitoring made it possible to propose mitigation proceedings such as the optimization of the positioning, orientation and timing of switching on the site lights.