Saturday, March 10, 2007

Daylight Savings Time...AARRGGHH!!!

In a few hours, and three weeks early, most of the United States begins daylight "savings" time. For those in Arizona and Hawaii, I am with you and do not think that we should turn up the clocks for an alleged extra hour of sunlight.
The argument for moving it up three weeks and allowing it to go into the first week of November is that it will cut down on excessive use of energy and thus we will have lower electric bills. Of course the "savings" can pay for our increasing gasoline prices as the oil companies refine the gas to "summer fuel" that has less pollution.
The Australians tried this in 2000 for the Sydney Olympics under the same guise. What happened? People used more energy in the morning because, surprise, it was dark as people were getting ready to being their work and or school day. Oh, no savings and all energy usage went up one percent.
The proponents also did not figure in the cost of having to change computers because most are used to changing the time at the end of March, not the beginning. The average cost for a publicly traded company is $50,000. Some savings!
Most of those who favor it just need to be honest. They like the sunlight in the evening and don't really care if it is inconvenient in the morning.
I don't like the change, but an interesting proposal in the 2007 Farmer's Almanac ( has an interesting proposal that actually maximizes the the daylight hours. Their proposal is to start the time change the first Sunday in April to the second Sunday in September. One of the reasons they point out is that is the time of year to maximize the amount of daylight without causing more morning darkness. Another point is that when the time will change in November, most people come home in light will come home in the dark. It does make a difference in how people drive and more accidents happen within that first month than usual. Having the clocks go back in September gives drivers a period to gradually ease into the darkness period. Spot on!
Today in Pasadena, California, sunrise was at 6:16 am. Tomorrow, it will be at 7:15 am. Monday, I will go to work almost in the dark.
The dishonesty of the last congress to get us here is bad for us in many ways. Again, all the proponents had to say is that they like the extra light in the evening and many people would go along. Everyone I talk to that likes daylight savings time, including Mrs. rightviewfromtheleftcoast, say they like the extra light in the evening. One admission on my part is that I will be able to take our dog to the local dog park because of the light in the evening. I may not like the time change, but I will take advantage of it.
So, do not forget to turn those clocks ahead tonight before you say your prayers and go to bed.

No comments: