New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Monday that the state will be turning off all bright lights to help migrating birds with their navigation in the spring and fall.
Earlier studies found that up to one billion birds in the U.S. die per year due to the "fatal light attraction." Millions of birds migrate through New York and the Atlantic Flyway Route, and the bright lights might cause them to collide in buildings. To prevent this phenomenon, New York agreed to turn off the bright outdoor lights between 11 p.m. and dawn, according to BBC News.
"This is a simple step to help protect these migrating birds that make their home in New York's forests, lakes, and rivers," Cuomo said in a statement.
Extra lightings will be turned off from April 15 to May 31 and Aug. 15 to Nov. 15. The latest campaign will not just preserve the population of the migratory birds; it will also support the ecosystem.
"It is critically important from a conservation perspective," Erin Crotty, executive director for Audubon New York, told the New York Times. "When birds thrive, people prosper."
New York is not the first state to act against fatal light attraction. Chicago has its "Lights Out" program that encourages owners and managers of tall buildings to turn off or dim their buildings' lights. It has saved an estimated 10,000 birds per year. Minnesota has had "Project BirdSafe" since 2007.