Light emissions can come from many sources including security lights, spot lights and flood lights, advertising signs and entertainment events.  Sometimes light can affect neighbours and interfere with their normal activities.  If severe enough, it can impact on people's health.

How can I manage light or glare coming from my property?

  • Consider where lights are placed to minimise impact on sensitive areas of properties such as bedrooms.
  • Avoid placing the light near a reflective surface and use existing features such as shrubs or trees to hide the light source from view.
  • Direct light downwards to brighten the target area only.
  • Try shields and baffles to help keep spill light to a minimum.
  • Fit only the number of light bulbs you need for an area.
  • Use low wattage bulbs if possible to reduce light intensity.
  • Use a timer or sensor so that lights are only triggered when necessary.
  • Turn off lights when they are not in use or not required.

How can I make a complaint about light or glare?

Discuss with your neighbour

People are sometimes unaware that their activities are causing a nuisance. Ipswich City Council encourages all residents and business operators to talk to their neighbours first about nuisance problems and only make a complaint if the issue remains unresolved.

Before you proceed with lodging a complaint, please refer to the below question to see if Council is the appropriate contact for your issue.

Does your complaint relate to light from a highway/freeway?

If you answered yes, please visit Department of Transport and Main Roads.

If you answered no to the question listed above, please follow the below steps to lodge your complaint with Council. Have the following information ready:

  • details of the source and nature of the issue
  • where the issue is coming from and how is it affecting you? – i.e the specific address/location of the nuisance, if you cannot provide the address council may be unable to take specific action.
  • specific information on how often the issue is happening e.g. what time on what day

Contact Council by one of the methods below:

Note: If the issue is occurring outside of business hours, the complaint can be actioned by council’s after-hours patrol officers. Please contact Council when the issue is occurring (24 hours) so that an investigating officer can be tasked to attend to the location while the nuisance is occurring.

How does Council manage a light or glare pollution complaint?

Council will initially attend the property causing the issue and determine if light or glare pollution is detectable or the cause is evident. As part of this inspection, the following can occur:

  • If no light or glare pollution is detected, Council Officers will contact the person who has made the report and see if further information is available or advise of outcome.
  • If a breach is identified, Council will speak to the residents causing the issue to attempt to resolve it.  If necessary, Council may issue Compliance Notice.
  • If a Compliance Notice is issued, a follow up process is put in place and will be undertaken to determine if the breach is ongoing after the expiration of the notice.
    d.If the breach is found to be continued then further action, including the issuing of infringement notices, can occur.

Complaints not investigated by Council

Council shares responsibility for dust and dirt complaints with other authorities. Council does not investigate the following.

  • Light emissions from freeways and highways including on and off ramps. This is the responsibility of the Department of Transport and Main Roads.
  • An environmentally relevant activity regulated by the Department of Environment and Science (e.g. chemical manufacturing).
  • An environmentally relevant activity regulated by the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (e.g. poultry farming).
  • A state or local government premises or activity. This is the responsibility of the Department of Environment and Science.