YOU DECIDE: Should Daylight Savings Time Become Permanent?

Posted by on May 26, 2021 in You Decide!

Spring forward, fall back . . . or is it the other way around? Daylight Savings Time  was first developed in the early 1900s to save fuel during World War I. Most states in the United States observe Daylight Savings Time—which lasts for eight months of each calendar year. Standard Time (from November to March) is when Americans set their clocks back one hour to prioritize the shortened length of daylight during the winter months. This new proposed bill would eliminate that Standard Time four-month period.

alarm clock on autumnal background
Do you like Daylight Savings?

Some legislators have decided that it’s time to make Daylight Savings Time the full year-round time, with no switching. However, Senator Marco Rubio of Florida reintroduced legislation called the Sunshine Protection Act of 2021, which would make Daylight Savings Time permanent for all the states that are currently continuing to switch between Standard Time and Daylight Savings time each year. The bill currently has fourteen cosponsors, and support from both Republican and Democratic legislators.

So, after reading these arguments, You Decide: Should Daylight Savings Time be permanent?

YES

  • The Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine states that changing the clocks twice a year can have negative health impacts, such as impacting sleep schedules.
  • Establishing daylight savings time year-round would allow Americans to have maximum sunlight during their most productive hours of the day. This would reduce rates of seasonal depression, increase exercise frequency, and could reduce the number of car accidents and robberies.
  • Permanent daylight savings time will have a positive impact on the economy as well: Americans spend less money during standard time than they do during daylight savings time.
  • Fifteen states have already passed legislation or resolutions to make daylight savings time permanent. This indicates strong popular support for the idea.

NO

  • Permanent daylight savings time won’t reduce energy costs, because modern Americans use the same amount of energy (computers, televisions, air-conditioning) whether the sun is up or not. When permanent daylight savings time was first adopted in Indiana in 2006, energy use actually increased.
  • Studies have shown a decrease in worker productivity during past periods of daylight savings time. Making it year-round could mean that productivity would decline overall.
  • Not all states currently use daylight savings time right now. Hawaii does not, nor do most parts of Arizona. It is also not observed in Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, or the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • There is historical precedent for changing times throughout the year: Roman water clocks used different scales for different months of the year to account for the changing light.
You decide
Credit: McGraw-Hill Education

Should Daylight Savings Time become permanent?

  • YES: Permanent daylight savings time has benefits everyone can experience. (71%, 5 Votes)
  • NO: Permanent daylight savings time could introduce negative outcomes. (29%, 2 Votes)

Total Voters: 7

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