Photo: The disappearing Milky Way as seen over Mono Lake

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While photographer Rollie Rodriguez has immortalized this view of the Milky Way over Mono Lake in California for all of us to enjoy, in real life fewer and fewer people are able to see this glowing spill of stars that makes up part of our galaxy. A study last year found 60 percent of Europeans and almost 80 percent of North Americans can no longer see the iconic view thanks to light pollution; in some parts of the world, like Singapore, Kuwait and Malta, it is imperceptible to the entire population.

In total, the Milky Way can no longer be seen by more than one third of the world’s people, making photos like this all the more profound. (Thankfully, the view isn't lost forever – we just need to turn off the lights!)

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