How Does Daylight Savings Time Save Energy? 

Every day of the year has exactly 24-hours but in some parts of the world (USA, Canada, and Australia), two days are off by an hour. They have a day in Spring that has 23 hours and a day in Autumn that has 25 hours.  

Daylight Savings Time is a practice in which people advance their clocks by an hour on the second Sunday of March and restore the time on the first Sunday of November to match the standard time. This practice was introduced by Benjamin Franklin, who suggested that people should make more use of the sunlight, in order to save energy, but the first systematic use of this system wasn’t made until World War I. There have been various researches on this practice but there hasn’t been much proof that would suggest that the Daylight Savings Time actually saves energy.

The idea behind DST was that people would spend more time outside their houses and utilize the sunlight, in turn saving more energy. However, American research conducted in 1975 suggested that the maximum country-wide energy saved through this method was around 1%. Research conducted in Europe suggested that the demand for lighting decreased slightly due to DST, but the demand for heating increased. It is assumed that an increase in the use of technological and electrical appliances around the house has decreased the possibility of saving energy by using DST. 

History of DST 

In the United States of America, DST was introduced during World War I in order to save energy, which would eventually aid the forces overseas, economically. It was revived by President Franklin Roosevelt during World War II, as well.

After World War II, some states continued to follow DST, while others did not. This caused sufficient confusion, nationally. Hence, in 1966, Congress set up exact dates for the spring forward and autumn backward time. In 2005, Congress introduced an act that incentivized daylight savings, along with vehicles that saved energy, as well.  

Additional Benefits associated with DST 

Alongside trying to save energy, DST is aimed at increasing consumerism and sales. People capitalize on the fact that because of the longer time sunlight stays, people should spend more time playing outdoors. This is why recreational activities such as baseball, golfing, skiing, etc are publicized more often in summers.

Additionally, there is a benefit of Daylight-Saving Time which is that it decreases the number of traffic accidents. This is because a lot more people make it to their homes during sunlight. There is great visibility on the road which decreases the chances of accidents.  

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In conclusion, one can benefit more from outdoor activities due to the Daylight Savings Time, but it may not necessarily save energy. The era in which this system was introduced was technologically very different from our use of energy today. The number of household appliances has changed the users’ requirements and the use of energy isn’t solely dependent upon the use of light in households.  

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