General Studies IGEOGRAPHY

Daylight Saving Time (DST)


The United States Senate, recently has unanimously passed a law making daylight saving time (DST) permanent, scrapping the biannual practice of putting clocks forward and back coinciding with the arrival and departure of winter.

What is Daylight Saving Time?

  • Daylight saving time (DST), also known as summer time (United Kingdom, European Union, and some other countries)
  • Countries in the Northern Hemisphere, clocks are usually set ahead one hour in late March or in April and are set back one hour in late September or in October.
  • The practice was first suggested by Benjamin Franklin in 1784. 
  • In 1907 an Englishman, William Willett, campaigned for setting the clock ahead by 80 minutes in four moves of 20 minutes each during April and the reverse in September. 
  • Several countries, including Australia, Great Britain, Germany, and the United States, adopted summer DST during World War I to conserve fuel by reducing the need for artificial light.
  • A group of Canadians in Port Arthur (Ontario) were the first to adopt the practice on July 1, 1908, setting their clocks an hour ahead.
  • Many studies have listed out the disadvantages of DST, as one hour of lost sleep in the US, increases the fatal crash rate by 5.4% to 7.6% for six days following the transition.
  • Other disadvantages are: a higher rate of workplace injuries after the switch, leading to lost days of work; a slight drop in stock market performance; health problems as a result of disruption of the circadian rhythm (body clock) and even longer sentences ordered by judges deprived of sleep.
  • Once the USA’s Sunshine Protection Act is passed, it will come into effect in November 2023. 
  • The practice of turning clocks back by an hour to standard time every November will stop — and DST, which now starts in March, will be in effect all year round.
  • DST is currently followed by some 70 countries twice a year.

How relevant is DST now?

  • A century ago, when DST was introduced, more daylight did mean less use of artificial light.
  • But modern society uses so much energy-consuming appliances all day long that the amount of energy saved is negligible.
  • Among the biggest disadvantages is the disruption of the body clock or circadian rhythm.

What are the countries that want DST gone?

  • In March 2020, the European Union moved to scrap the custom of DST, with the European Parliament voting 410-192.
  • After 2021, EU member states will choose between “permanent summertime” or “permanent wintertime”.

Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)-

  • Greenwich Mean Time is the yearly average (or ‘mean’) of the time each day when the Sun crosses the Prime Meridian at the Royal Observatory Greenwich, London. 
  • At different times in the past, it has been calculated in different ways, including being calculated from noon.
  • The term ‘GMT’ is also used as one of the names for the time zone Coordinated Universal Time (UTC)+00:00.
  • Essentially, mean time is clock time rather than solar (astronomical) time. 
  • Solar time varies throughout the year, as the time interval between the Sun crossing a set meridian line changes.
  • But each day measured by a clock has the same length, equal to the average (mean) length of a solar day. 
  • It’s a way of standardizing and regularizing time.

Indian Standard Time (IST)-

  • IST is the time zone observed throughout India, with a time offset of UTC+05:30 which means, IST is 5:30 hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). 
  • This time zone is in use during standard time in Asia
  • India Standard Time is a half-hour time zone. 
  • Its local time differs by 30 minutes instead of the normal whole hour.
  • India does not observe daylight saving time or other seasonal adjustments
  • In military and aviation time IST is designated E* (“Echo-Star”) and is indicated as Asia/Kolkata in the IANA time zone database.

Source: Indian Express

You can find many articles on GEOGRAPHY (part of GS I) in our website. Go through these articles share with your friends and post your views in comment section.

Leave a Reply

Open chat
Hello Dear Aspirant,
Join our whatsapp group here to get Daily Newspapers, Magazines, Monthly, Question Banks and much more..
Just ping us your Name..
See you then..!!!