The change in summer time will take place on Sunday, March 28, 2021. At 2 o’clock, it will be 3 o’clock. At this time the continuity of change is still debated and the benefits are more and more questionable. Here are five questions (and answers) you will be asking yourself.
- When was the time change introduced?
The first time change was mentioned would be in the 18th century. Benjamin Franklin saw the potential savings in terms of lighting at that time if the wake up time was brought forward by at least an hour.
Legend has it that he wrote to a French newspaper to talk about it. His article was followed by many more lively responses. Germany and the United Kingdom are the first countries to adopt a time change. This was in April and May 1916.
France also implemented the time change in 1916, it was 14 June. But at the end of World War II, daylight saving time was abandoned.
It was not until the 1973 oil shock that the French government considered how to save money. On March 28, 1976, the time change was restored. But time does not change in French foreign departments and territories. Most European countries also adopted time changes during the 1980s.
In 2001, a European decree reconciled the changes at these times. Since this date, time changes occur at the same time in all countries of the European Union. For winter time it is 3pm on the last Sunday of October, 2pm. For summer time, it is 2 pm on the last Sunday in March, it is 3 pm.
European Union countries are currently spread across three time zones:
– Western Europe (GMT): Ireland and Portugal;
– Central Europe (GMT + 1): Germany, Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, Spain, France, Hungary, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia and Sweden;
– Eastern Europe (GMT + 2): Bulgaria, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania and Romania.
- How many countries currently implement time changes?
Around sixty countries around the world still apply the time of change.
Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Tunisia, China, Japan, South Korea, Iceland and Egypt have decided to cancel it after adopting it. And most countries have never changed time.
- Did time change save energy?
There is no evidence that changing time has significantly affected energy savings. In 2017, a European report qualified the European Union “summer time regime” results on energy savings.
This highlights the difference of results between southern and northern European countries. With gains between 0.5% and 2.5% depending on the country.
Studies, associations, and health and economic experts suggest that the light savings made in the evening are canceled out by the excesses of heating in the morning.
- Does time change have an impact on health?
Apart from the energy saving aspect, changing time also affects health. On a health or biological level, disrupting the pace of life can have consequences, especially for the elderly and young.
More and more people are questioning the benefits of changing time.
Sleep is a major drawback of changing time.
It will be linked to the natural sleep hormone, melatonin. It is secreted during darkness.
This year, some are against time changes, linked to curfew, for health reasons.
No information was given on the subject or when the last time change would take place.