Dark Sky Ordinance

Project Update

Compliance Deadlines Code Amendment - On September 27, 2021, staff provided the City Council with a status update on the City's Dark Sky Ordinance. Although City staff started working with gas station owners on compliance with the Dark Sky Ordinance in 2019, commercial enforcement and outreach has been delayed to due the COVID-19 pandemic. Since the compliance deadlines have passed, staff recommended the Council process an amendment to the Dark Sky Ordinance to extend the compliance deadlines to bring existing outdoor lighting for commercial, residential and institutional zoning districts into compliance. The Council directed staff to proceed with public hearings before the Planning Commission and City Council to amend the Ordinance. On November 1, 2021, the Planning Commission will hold a public hearing to consider amending the compliance deadlines. See the public hearing notice for details. 

*Please note that the existing compliance deadlines only pertain to existing outdoor lighting. All newly approved construction is conditioned to be in compliance with the Dark Sky Ordinance. 


Effective October 15, 2018, the Dark Sky Ordinance regulates outdoor lighting through the addition of comprehensive, citywide outdoor lighting standards into Title 17 (Zoning) of the Malibu Municipal Code, Chapter 17.41.

In 2013, the City Council enacted a citywide outdoor lighting ordinance that was created with assistance from the International Dark-Sky Association (IDA). The IDA is a United States-based non-profit organization started in 1988 by astronomers in an effort preserve the nighttime environment and reduce light pollution.

Benefits of Dark Sky include: reducing energy, conserving natural resources, and decreasing light pollution and the negative impacts on wildlife and their habitats.


  • Outdoor light fixtures must be fully shielded and directed downward
  • Outdoor light fixtures must not exceed 850 lumens
  • Maximum Kelvin temperature of 3000 K
  • Also included are requirements for motion detectors, string lights, and allowable light trespass from property lines, as well as additional lighting requirements based on zoning districts

What you need to know - Outdoor Lighting Basics