1/28/2005

DayLight Savings Time

In the article "Spring Forward, Fall Back: Its all about Economics" the athor talks about the economics of DayLight Savings time, and how there is a 10% decrease in energy consumption during that time of year. So I suggest that we stay on daylight savings time year round, I dont know that if the energy savings would remain the same throughout the year, but I know that I for one am sick of the time changes. I say we pick one and stick with it, personally I prefer DayLight Savings Time.
It seems to me that during the winter that it gets dark way to early, and that forces my son to come in from playing and he just bounces off the walls. I think it would be better to have an hour more daylight in the evening than in the morning.

5 comments:

Diane said...

Bob, I'm glad you wrote about daylight savings time. I have always been curious as to the reasoning behind it. I used to joke it was to give golfers an extra hour to play. I grew up in Arizona and have been living in Utah for 4 years now. 'Springing forward' and 'falling back' is a nuisance and I've always thought Arizona was smart for not bothering with it. Personally I haven't noticed a difference in the hours of daylight between the states. Maybe that's because Arizona gets plenty of sunlight already. If the purpose behind daylight savings time is to save energy then maybe Arizona should conform.

Emily said...

I am not sure but from what I understand the whole daylight savings time started around the 1970’s when there was a big push on saving resources. The speed limit was dropped from 80 miles an hour down to a maxim of 55 miles an hour everywhere to save gas. The time was changed (daylight savings) so people could work off the sunlight longer and not use as much electricity. There were other changes that happened in the effort to help save and protect resources.

Saving resources is important and should be taken serious, but in today’s fast changing world it’s hard to have the time changing continually. Using the sunlight more instead of electricity is resourceful, but in today business world more and more operations are using night shifts so electricity is going to be used regardless.

As an assumption of why energy decreases by 10% during daylight savings could be people go to bed earlier when it’s darker. The old saying of, “early to bed and early to rise,” is part of this day light savings theme I believe.

Bjorn said...
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Bjorn said...

Interesting that you mention the proverb coined by Benjamin Franklin, as he was the first to propose Daylight Saving Time. It was not, however, implemented until WWI in Britain and America. Both nations abandoned the practice after the war and resumed it during WWII. Ambiguities in DST usage in America forced congress to pass the Uniform Time Act in 1966. Congress legislated extended DST for most of the country from 1973-1975, after which point states, or rather time zones within states, were free to uniformly choose whether or not to use DST.

If the nation's goal were to maximize efficiency, it would be best not to seasonally change the time, but rather to have the workday begin at sun-up (Amish, no?);or, an hour after sun-up, as everyone has to wake up and get ready to go to work, which uses energy, of course. If it were uniformly decided that work would begin at the time closest to actual sunrise (re-calculated every two or three weeks, perhaps?).

I agree that it is a good idea to institute a policy that conserves energy, but I find it foolhardy to "change" the time. That is to say, I don't like that 8 o'clock on the first Sunday of April is different from 8 'clock on the day immediately following it. I also dislike that we have knowledge of a calendar system which is more accurate than our own yet we refuse to use it; and that America does not use the Metric system. Speaking of, who knew there was a metric system for measuring time?

http://zapatopi.net/metrictime.html

(I, for one, have known about that for a couple of years but still can't get used to it. Heh.)

-- Bjorn

Dr. Tufte said...

-1 on Bart's post for spelling errors (waived)

I believe the reason that daylight savings time is only part of the year is to reorient the time we work with changes in available daylight. So we really can't do this for the whole year.

That also points out why Arizona can take the option to not use it - as you get closer to the equator the day approaches 12 hours year round. So, more southerly states have less incentive.