Guide for Navigating Urban Lightscape. Citizen's Right for Light Knowledge

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Guide for Navigating Urban Lightscape Citizen’s Right for Light Knowledge



C O N T E N T S

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(LIMITED) LIGHT ENCYCLOPAEDIA

19

LIGHT POLLUTION

22

ILLUMINATED STORIES

30

MULTI-SPECIES-SPACES LIGHT

32

ALTERNATIVE LIGHTSCAPES

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EMBODIED LIGHT EXERCISES

36

BECOMING A DARK NIGHT ADVOCATE

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NOTES



LIGHT ENCYCLOPAEDIA DEFINITION OF LIGHT Light is primordial, older than Earth, provided by the Sun, source of life, food, warmth, cycles, to name a few. There is natural sunlight and moon-star-light. Light and darkness are important since they affect our sleep, health and all life. The meaning of light changed with the invention of torches, candles, gas and electric light(1). We no longer spend long evenings looking after the fire and most of us in urban spaces don’t have a caring relationship with light. As a result, the meaning of light has become abstract since we no longer see the flame or the origin of light. Today, we think about light in terms of energy consumption, safety and elongating the daytime hours for work or pleasure. We think very little of how the use of today’s electric lighting affects our primordial health, sleep, circadian cycle and also ecosystems with other-than-human beings. I wonder, how could our lighting be more attuned to the natural light colours and cycles. How can we change the use of light and our relationship with darkness? What is our understanding of the effects of the colour of light? How can we care for the omnipresent and growing, spreading, damaging light pollution? With increasing light pollution we also lose our ability to see the starry skies and through this our connection to the Universe. Millions of children will never see the Milkyway because of light pollution (2). So what can we do about it? We can start by learning about light.

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WAYS TO DESCRIBE LIGHT (SELECTION)

ray(s) ambience natural artificial trespass control escaped direction intrusive nuisance enlightens you responsible floodlight targeted soft warm brightness

pollution


cool; cold illumination; illuminance shimmering dancing coloured; colourful strong weak dazzling Sun-,Moon-,star-,skymorning, evening, dayclutter glow smart glare IDIOMS

enlightenment light on one’s feet lighten up get the green light let there be light light at the end of the tunnel inner light speed of light


WHY IS LIGHT IMPORTANT?

tells your body to wake up tells your body to go the sleep

without light, we can’t see the stars, and without seeing the stars we can’t discern our place in the Universe

vitamin D

day and night rhythms

used by plants for photosynthesis which produces oxygen

tells your brain when to start producing melatonin which balances hormones, fights free radicals, lowers depression, anxiety, reduces the risk of obesity and cancer


MELAT

ONIN

V

N MI A IT

D

N GE Y OX

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LIGHT ENCYCLOPAEDIA LIGHT PROPERTIES: COLOUR, ILLUMINATION AND BRIGHTNESS The sunset and rise are a spectacular play of soft, warm hues of pink, red, violet and orange. On the contrary, the daytime colours are with cold blue undertones. The colour of light is important for informing other-than-human species of the time of the day. The colour and intensity of light gives information to other-than-human beings. Light is experienced by their bodies and us humans are a part of this natural phenomenon. Our bodies are wired to sense information from natural light cycles and function according to it. So for example, the evening soft light encourages our bodies, the brain, to get ready for sleep and start producing a chemical called melatonin. Melatonin is a chemical that our brain produces only during the night while asleep, and it is a powerful antioxidant that fights free radicals in our body whilst also encouraging repair. People who are sleep deprived, and therefore lack melatonin production, are prone to anxiety, stress, diabities, hormonal imbalances and cancer. Likewise, in the morning, the blue strong light tells our bodies to wake up and promotes alertness. As a result of industrialisation and modern society we have altered the natural cycles of coloured light. We now use artificial electrical lights and we don’t pay enough attention to the colour nor intensity of light. But our bodies are still wired to respond to the natural cycles of light. How much attention are we really giving to the light we use in our spaces? What happens when we use the wrong colour and intensity of light? What happens when we alter natural cycles with artificial light?

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BLUE SKY

EVENING

SETTING SUN

SUNSET


WAVELENGTH NM (nanometre)

INFRARED

750

620 590 570

VISIBLE SPECTRUM TO HUMANS 400 - 750 NM

490 480 450

400 315

280

100

ULTRAVIOLET


RED LIGHT THERAPY 660 AND 850 NM these therapies are used to promote the possible skin, muscle tissue and other parts of the bodies renewal

650 NM RED COLOUR SPECTRUM The red colour spectrum is invisible to most insects (4). This spectrum of colour is still visible by humans. We could utilise this knowledge to create ecological street lighting

480 NM COLOUR OF THE BLUE SKY blue light-sensitive pigment called melanopsin reacts to this light colour with peak intensity; this prohibits sleep and induces being awake (3)

UV-A ULTRAVIOLET SPECTRUM 315-400 NM is invisible to humans but seen by many nonhuman eyes such as birds, vertebrates, fish (5)

UV-A + UV-B ULTRAVIOLET SPECTRUMS we need to use protective sun cream to stop its damaging effects on our skin


LIGHT ENCYCLOPAEDIA TECHNICAL KNOWLEDGE LUX Lux is a standardised unit of measurement of light level intensity, which is commonly referred to as "illuminance" or "illumination". A measurement of 1 lux is equal to the illumination of a one metre square surface that is one metre away from a single candle (6).

1 CANDLE (1 LUMEN)

1 SQM AREA 1 METRE DISTANCE

= 1 LUX

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NATURAL LIGHT

TYPICAL LUX

direct sunlight

32,000 to 100,000

ambient daylight

10,000 to 25,000

overcast daylight

1000

Suntset and Sunrise

400

Moonlight (full moon)

1

Night (no moon)

<0.01

Regular streetlight

10 lux


LUMENS

Lumens (short LM) shows the total light output and brightness of the lamp to the human eye from the light source. The lumens are different for indoor and outdoor use. The higher the number of lumens, the brighter the source is (7).

RECOMMENDED AREA

LUMENS PER SQ-METRE

kitchen

300-400

Kitchen (task)

700-800

Living room

400-500

Hallway

300

Bedroom

300-400

Bathroom

500-600

Reading area

400

HIGHER NUMBER IN LUMENS EQUALS MORE BRIGHTNESS

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LIGHT FIXTURE

LIGHT SOURCE 1000 LUMENS

1000 LUX

1 SQ METRE

10 SQ METRE

100 LUX


LIGHT BULBS There are many different light bulbs out there. When buying one, it is important to keep in mind the light’s colour spectrum, effects on health, ecological impact, energy consumption, space, lifespan, brightness, materials used for production and end-of-life recycling options.

HALOGEN LIGHT BULB

LED LIGHT BULB

2000

25,000

NO

NO

NO

CONTAINS MERCURY

TUNGSTEN RARE EARTH METAL

TUNGSTEN RARE EARTH METAL

CONTAINS MERCURY

DIFFICULT

EASY

DIFFICULT

DIFFICULT

14 W

60 W

43 W

12 W

FLUORESCENT LIGHT BULBS (CFL)

INCANDESCENT LIGHT BULB

10,000

1000

YES

MATERIALS SPECULATIVE RECYCLING

HOURS

UV

ENERGY USE 800 LUMENS ENERGY USE FROM MINING, PRODUCTION, TRANSPORT, RECYCLING

*

*

HASEN’T BEEN CALCULATED

* 1000 hours for the incandescent light bulb is artificial.The original incandescent light bulb would last up to 2500 hours. This was changed by the lighting companies in 1924 (8). * Energy use. Although energy efficiency is important, it also matters if the light bulb uses fossil or renewable energy. * Illustration on the left; reference (9).

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LIGHT BULB COLOUR KELVIN Colour temperature is a way to describe the light appearance of the light bulb. It is measured in degrees of Kelvin (K) on a scale from 1,000 to 10,000. 4500 - 10,000 Kelvin is daylight and 10 000 is in the Sunshine.

2200 K

2700 K

3000 K

3500 K

4500 K

5000 K

6500 K

LIGHT COLOUR AND TEMPERATURE (K)

VERY WARM INTIMATE

CALM WARM

NICE

CRISP

DAYLIGHT

ALERT

DAYLIGHT SUPER ALERT

BEST FOR INSECTS

*

HOME BEDROOM BATHROOM

USE ONLY WHEN NECESSARY

*

HOME LIVING ROOM

*

GARAGE

*

OFFICE HOSPITALITY RETAIL

* These

WÓULD NOT USE OUTSIDE

*

FACTORY

temperatures vary from different sources. In general the warmer colours should be used at home and especially in spaces for sleep. Strong blueish lights should only be used in factory environments since these promote alertness in our bodies.

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Light pollution is caused by the use of excessive uncontrolled light. This usually is caused by wrong light colour, too bright light source, poor lighting fixture design which results in glare or wrong angled light. Global light pollution has increased by at least 49% over 25 years (10). Meanwhile, in the last 27 years, in Germany, the total flying insect rates are down by 75% (11). This is because half of all the insects are nocturnal and light pollution affects their ability to reproduce, find food and are easier to find by predators such as bats and other animals. Solving light pollution would help us tackle climate change but also mass extinction.

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DAMAGED

LOST

DISRUPTED

BROKEN

MISSED

INCREASING

ONGOING



ILLUMINATED STORIES

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1

The Embodied Experience of Light and its Health Effects

2

The Lantern Men of Pforzheim and the Use of Natural Moonlight

3

Moths Cry for the Lost Night and Darkness



THE EMBODIED EXPERIENCE OF LIGHT AND ITS EFFECTS ON HEALTH DIE VERKÖRPERTE ERFAHRUNGVON LICHT UND SEINE AUSWIRKUNGEN AUF DIE GESUNDHEIT “When there is too much light, I stop seeing for a few moments. When I want to relax or I am stressed I always put the lights very low in my room because lights can make me feel stressed. Also, the light in my room is so aggressively white, it is a cold, white, extreme light. I don’t like having it turned on in the evening or nighttime.” “In my last flat we had a very aggressive light in the kitchen. So, I would always put on the candle because I felt nervous when the cold light was on.” “I get strong headaches after I work long days at work in front of the computer. The blue light from the screen hurts my eyes by the end of the day and affects my sleep.” "Hi, ich bin (Name).Wenn Licht zu grell scheint, sehe ich für einige Momente nichts . Wenn ich mich entspannen will oder gestresst bin, dimme ich das Licht in meinem Zimmer immer sehr, denn Licht kann mich stressen. Außerdem ist das Licht in meinem Zimmer so aggressiv weiß, es ist ein kaltes, weißes, extremes Licht. Ich mag es nicht, wenn es am Abend oder in der Nacht an ist.” "In meiner letzten Wohnung hatten wir ein sehr aggressiv leuchtendes Licht in der Küche. Also habe ich immer eine Kerze angemacht, weil es mich so nervös gemacht hat , wenn das Licht an war. Das Licht war so kalt." "Ich bekomme starke Kopfschmerzen, wenn ich lange Tage vor dem sehr hellen Computer arbeite."

We are constantly experiencing, using, perceiving light, its colour and intensity. Light tells our bodies the time of the day and links us back to nature's rhythms. So for example, the daytime strong blue light gives information to wake up and feel alert. Conversely, the red and soft hues of sunset and prevailing darkness tells our bodies to prepare for sleep. The evening's soft light colour temperature is especially important since it informs our brain to start producing a powerful natural chemical called melatonin. Melatonin fights free radicals, is anti-aging, controls hormones and “fixes” problems in our body. People with sleep issues and reduced melatonin production can suffer from depression, obesity and even have a higher risk for cancer. So it is essential for our health to surround ourselves with candlelight, warm deep orange or red coloured light and darkness before and during sleep.

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THE LANTERN MEN OF PFORZHEIM AND THE USE OF NATURAL MOONLIGHT DIE LATERNENMANN VON PFORZHEIM UND DIE NUTZUNG DES NATÜRLICHEN MONDLICHTS “I’m Alex, I’m a lanterman. I wear a uniform with a pocket watch for my important job for the night. Every evening, and it doesn’t matter what day, week or time of the year, precisely ten minutes before sunset I start lighting the lanterns. This is of course only when there is absolutely no moon for natural nightlight. Of course, then we adjust the need for artificial lights. But usually, quite often, my evenings and nights are filled with the smell of gas, the shining orange glow on cobblestones and the joy of giving way to modernity. The gas flame really is a marvellous invention and it makes my heart sing to see all the lanterns on at night. I feel that I am a part of something bigger, the new modernity, the rise of a new era. I ask, what would be the city without lights? What would be the night without the lanternmen?” "Mein Name ist Alex und ich bin ein Laternenmann. Ich trage eine Uniform mit einer Taschenuhr für meine wichtige Aufgabe in der Nacht. Jeden Abend, und es spielt keine Rolle, an welchem Tag, in welcher Woche oder zu welcher Jahreszeit, beginne ich genau zehn Minuten vor Sonnenuntergang mit dem Anzünden der Laternen. Natürlich nur, wenn der Mond kein natürliches Nachtlicht spendet. Selbstverständlich passen wir dann den Bedarf an künstlichem Licht an. Aber normalerweise sind meine Abende und Nächte mit dem Geruch von Gas, dem orangefarbenen Lichtschein auf den Pflastersteinen und der Freude, Teil der Moderne zu sein, erfüllt. Die Gasflamme ist wirklich eine wunderbare Erfindung und es lässt mein Herz höher schlagen, wenn ich all die Laternen in der Nacht brennen sehe. Meine Aufgabe scheint einfach zu sein, aber es ist eine Frage des richtigen Einsatzes und der Zuverlässigkeit. Ich bin so stolz Teil der Zukunft zu sein. Ich frage: Was wäre die Stadt ohne Lichter? Was wäre die Nacht ohne die Laternen Männer?"

In the beginning of the 19th century each of the street lights was taken care of by the lanternmen. In 1897 there were 10 lanternmen in Pforzheim and by 1912, this number had grown to 23 (12). But after the invention of electric street lights the title and need for lanternmen was lost. As a result, street and public lights became abstract, distant to our understanding, concern and its systems seamlessly embedded in urban life. We no longer care for the lighting other than for the cost, safety and night time economies. When did we last question the need for light in some areas or its effects on our primordial circadian cycle, sleep, health, other-than-human beings and ecological systems? Most streets are lit from sunset to sunrise even when no-body is using it. Could we rethink how we light our streets? Could we perhaps also once more use the natural moonlight in some areas of the city?

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MOTHS CRY FOR THE LOST NIGHT AND DARKNESS NACHTFALTER SCHREIEN NACH DER VERLORENEN NACHT UND DUNKELHEIT

“I’m a moth and I live in the dark night where I pollinate flowers, blooms and petals. I find the white and blue blooms easily because my eyes are sensitive and can see blue and ultraviolet light in the dark. I try and try again to find my friends and lovers in the dark but so often the lights disturb me. These strong, blue, bright white lights hurt my million small eyes. Sometimes I fly in a thousand circles until I fall from exhaustion. The people, they never see me, because they are asleep. I wish they would also take their artificial moons and try sleeping under them. There are a thousand moons shining on empty streets. I wish the human would give me back my night and darkness, my home.” "Ich bin ein Nachtfalter und lebe in der dunklen Nacht, wo ich Blumen, Blüten und Blütenblätter bestäube. Auch in der Nacht finde ich die weißen und blauen Blüten leicht, denn meine Augen sind empfindlich und können in der Dunkelheit blaues und ultraviolettes Licht sehen. Ich versuche immer wieder, meine Freunde und Liebhaber in der Dunkelheit zu finden, aber oft stören mich die Lichter. Diese starken, blauen, hellen weißen Lichter schmerzen meine Millionen kleine Augen. Manchmal fliege ich tausend Kreise, bis ich vor Erschöpfung umfalle. Die Menschen sehen mich nie, weil sie schlafen. Ich wünschte, sie würden auch einmal versuchen unter ihren künstlichen Monden zu schlafen. Tausend Monde, die auf leere Straßen leuchten. Ich wünschte, die Menschen würden mir die Nacht und die Dunkelheit zurückgeben, mein Zuhause."

The human eye sees the visible light spectrum and its colours. However, many other species such as birds, insects and mammals have more evolved eyes to see for example ultraviolet or polarised light. Now the problems arise when our space's lighting is anthropocentric and doesn't take into account other species' visions or needs. Most of the urban lights are ill-fitted and affect nonhuman ways of living. Insect population has decreased 75% in Germany in the last 27 years (11). If the insects die, we die. The dark night, dimming down and rethinking the colour of our lights is important since almost half of all more-than-human beings are nocturnal. The fox, the hedgehog, the bird, the owl, the wolf, the moth. Moths are better pollinators than bees and butterflies. Moths are beautiful. Moths need the darkness. We need to rethink our urban spaces and use of light. We need to care for the moth and start conversations about the use of light.

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MULTI-SPECIES-SPACES LIGHT Humans only see a portion of the light spectrum. The light that we humans see is called the visible light spectrum. This means the in-visible light spectrums or the invisible light can still be seen by other-than-human beings. Other-than-human beings bodies use the information they get from natural light to tell time when to do things: time to get up, time to migrate, time to find a partner etc. So when we alter the darkness or create spaces with unnatural colour spectrum or brightness of light, we confuse the natural rhythms of their bodies. We also confuse our own natural circadian cycle. Light is for other-than-human beings like the human clock, it tells when or where to do certain things. For example the newly hatched turtles always follow the blue light reflecting from the sea. They get this information from the blue light. However, with new LED blue-light rich light they get confused which way to go and where the ocean is. Today, our spaces and use of light is mostly human-centred. This means we don’t take into account how our artificial sources of light affect other species than our own. Does it hurt their eyes or disrupt their sleep? Can they still find their partners? Or their way home, the ocean?

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ALTERNATIVE LIGHTSCAPES QUESTIONS FOR BETTER LIGHT-USE-FUTURES

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1

WHAT KIND OF LIGHTS? Colour, brightness and angles matter. Use the right colour of light in the right places. We only need useful light!

2

LIGHTS ON, WHEN? Circadian lighting that follows natural moon cycles

3

LIGHTS TO WHOM? Think also in non-human ways


INAPPROPRIATE LIGHTING DESIGN UPWARD LIGHT

UPWARD REFLECTED LIGHT

USEFUL LIGHT


1

Turn off any artificial lights and use only a candlelight. Note down how this makes you feel, does it affect your sleep? Try this for one night, one week or longer.

2

In the evening turn off your lights. Stay in the dark space and wait 20 minutes for your eyes to adjust to the darkness. Learn how your eyes get used to the dark. Try and notice the shadows, textures and shapes that have risen from the dark.

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3

Do this only when it is safe and go with a friend or two (!). In the evening, try and notice the street lights in your city. See the shadows. Try and find the stars and any insects attracted to the light.

4

Take any light source and try to play with the emitting light by using your body. For example, stay in front of the light, block it, make shadow-theatre, look into the light. Try and see if the colour of the light or brightness affects you in any way. Reflect on how the light feels to your body. What do you experience? 35


BECOMING A DARK NIGHT ADVOCATE WHAT CAN I DO?

TELL YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY

BE CRITICAL AND AWARE OF YOUR OWN USE OF LIGHT

ASK YOUR LOCAL COUNCIL TO ADDRESS THE ISSUE

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IF YOU HAVE A GARDEN, SWITCH THE LIGHTS OFF OR USE RED LIGHT

PRIORITISE YOUR OWN AND OTHERS SLEEP. BE CONSIDERATE WHEN DISTURBING DARKNESS

SEEK WAYS TO SEE THE STARS, UNIVERSE AND THE MILKYWAY

RESEARCH LIGHT POLLUTION, READ ABOUT THE TOPIC

USE ONLY THE RIGHT LIGHT IN THE RIGHT PLACE


NOTES FOR CITATION 1. Schivelbusch, Wolfgang, “Disenchanted Night The Industrialization of Light in the Nineteenth Century”, (University of California Press, 1995), p.4-5. 2.”Why your kids will never see the stars” by Mark Townsend, 03.2013. The Guardian. <https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2003/mar/16/uk.greenpolitics>. 3. University of Oxford. "Lighting color affects sleep, wakefulness: Green light promotes sleep while blue light delays it, find researchers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 June 2016. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/06/160608154233.htm>. 4. Donners M, van Grunsven RHA, Groenendijk D, van Langevelde F, Bikker JW, Longcore T, Veenendaal E. Colors of attraction: Modeling insect flight to light behavior. J Exp Zool A Ecol Integr Physiol. 2018 Oct;329(8-9): 434-440. doi: 10.1002/jez.2188. Epub 2018 Jun 26. PMID: 29944198. 5.”Insect and bird populations declining dramatically in Germany” by Fabian Schmid, 19.10.2017, DW. <https://www.dw.com/en/insect-and-bird-populations-declining-dramatically -in-germany/a-41030897>. 6.”Lux, Lumens and Watts: Our Guide” by Green Business Light UK, <https://greenbusinesslight.com/resources/lighting-lux-lumens-watts/>. 7.”What are Lumens?” by Integral LED website, <https://integral-led.com/en/content/what-are-lumens>. 8. Levin, Anna, “Incandescent. We Need to Talk About Light”, 2019, p.178. 9. “What is the difference between Lumens, Lux and Watt?” by Gocustec April 25, 2019, Gocustec. <https://www.gocustec.com/news/What-is-the-difference-between.html>. 10.University of Exeter. "Rapid increase in global light pollution." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 September 2021. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/09/210914111302.htm>. 11.Article Source: More than 75 percent decline over 27 years in total flying insect biomass in protected areas, Hallmann CA, Sorg M, Jongejans E, Siepel H, Hofland N, et al. (2017) More than 75 percent decline over 27 years in total flying insect biomass in protected areas. PLOS ONE 12(10): e0185809. <https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0185809>. 12. Stadtarchiv Pforzheim, Institut für Stadtgeschichte, Annette Nußbaum.

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SPECIAL THANKS TO Annette Nußbaum from the Stadtarchiv Pforzheim, Institut für Stadtgeschichte Frederike Kintscher for the wonderful and insightful discussions and for pushing me forward with the thinking The EMMA team with Alexandra Vogt, Almut Benkert, Louisa Schneider and Fabian Jäger. Thank you for putting trust in me and giving the gift of time and space to take this project forward Janina Au and Michel Lörz for the curational support and for helping to make the work happen Voice actors Elias Mennad, Stefanie Erbes, Miriam Neukam, Marie Weiss and Louisa Schneider for giving voice to the project

No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, published, transmitted or used in any form or by any means for any commercial gains or activities. All rights reserved. Say hello or ask guestions about the project www.liinalember.com


Liina Lember EMMA Pforzheim 2022


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