Sunday, March 8, 2009

Daylight saving time does not save energy.

For some of us, it’s that time of the year again when we ask “when does daylight saving time end?” even when it has just started. It’s probably the only disliked idea that came from Benjamin Franklin, who thought of Daylight Saving Time (DST) or Summer Time originally. Dislike might even be a weak word for it since Google searches has smatterings of “abolish daylight saving time” and “demonstrations against daylight saving time.” Demonstrations… .

One of the rationale used for implementing DST is energy conservation. We are supposed to save energy from being less inside our homes and therefore using less appliances and consuming less electricity. Daylight Saving Time had some backing from a U.S. Department of Transportation research done in the ’70s that cited a small but significant (1%) savings in energy consumption… if all goes well.

Problem is, not all researches point that way. I need those here in the Hoosier State to pay attention...especially "My Man Mitch" and that fine group of spendthrifts in the Indiana Legislature.

In Indiana, U.S.A., the government expected a $7 million saving in energy usage when they switched all counties to DST last 2005. However. over a course of 3 years, scientists studied energy consumption in the state and found that Indiana actually spent 48.6 million more due to DST (Source: Of course, the bill came with the accompanying increase in emissions.

A report by the California Energy Commission, which can be downloaded here, also concluded that there is only a minuscule amount in energy savings when the state switched to DST.

By the way, DST in the U.S. starts on the second Sunday of March. That’s March 8 for 2009, today people, and March 14 in 2010. It ends on the first Sunday of November.

What do you think? Does DST really lessen the individual homeowner’s electric bills?

Some fire protection associations and government agencies suggest that we change the batteries on smoke detectors when we change our clock’s time to DST. To make sure we save electricity, why not change our remaining incandescent lamps to CFLs as well?

Time Marches On:

No comments: