New Hampshire

New Hampshire's Outdoor Lighting Efficiency Act (HB 585) — sponsored by a bipartisan group of state legislators and backed by conservation groups, town planners and a leading utility — became law on September 13, 2009.

HB 585 does these four things:

• Requires all new and replacement outdoor lighting (including roadway lighting) installed with state funds to be fully shielded, "dark-sky friendly," and not to exceed minimum lighting levels recommended by the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA.)

• Requires utilities to provide fully shielded dark-sky compliant streetlight fixtures to New Hampshire municipalities as the default option, although local communities can choose other designs if they wish.

• Tells the Public Utilities Commission to set a "midnight service" rate for streetlighting that allows utilities to install timers on non-essential lights selected by municipalities to be turned off at midnight, to reduce energy consumption by half.

• Establishes a statewide policy of protecting New Hampshire dark skies as a cultural asset important to rural character and the tourism industry.

Read more about the bill and its background here.

Here's a list of cities and towns in New Hampshire that have adopted outdoor-lighting regulations:

  • Bedford (link)

  • Bethlehem
  • Brookline (link; see Section 2300)

  • Chester
  • Chichester (link; see Article III, Section R)

  • Conway (link)

  • Danbury
  • Dover (link; see Outdoor Lighting in Chapter 149-14-E)

  • Easton
  • Enfield (link)

  • Francestown
  • Goffstown (link)

  • Gorham
  • Goshen
  • Greenland
  • Hanover
  • Hopkinton
  • Jackson (link; see Section 13 - Lighting)

  • Lebanon (link; see Section 6.5-F - Exterior Lighting)

  • Lincoln
  • Londonderry (link; see Section 3.13)

  • Nashua (link)

  • New Boston
  • New Hampton
  • Newbury (link)

  • Newmarket (link)

  • Newport
  • Nottingham (link)

  • Ossipee (link)

  • Peterborough (link)

  • Raymond (link)

  • Rochester
  • Seabrook
  • Shelburne (link

  • Waterville
  • Wilton (link)

(if you know about any others, please let us know!)