Feel that warm spring breeze floating in the air? A return to brighter days might be triggering it! Daylight Saving Time (NOTE: No “s” on “Saving”!) begins at 2:00 a.m., Sunday March 12. Remember - “Spring ahead; Fall back” So--get up at 2:00 a.m. and turn your clock ahead an hour, then go back to sleep!
Daylight Saving Time has a long and checkered history, dating at least to the late 1700’s and Benjamin Franklin. Benjamin Franklin melded science with economics and wrote on April 26, 1784 to the Journal of Paris, under the English title An Economical Project. Mr. Franklin laid out the economic benefits that would accrue through reductions in the use of candles! His calculations concluded a total sum saved by the City of Paris alone would be 96,075,000 livre tournois. An immense sum at that time.
New Zealand entomologist George Vernon Hudson asked the Wellington Philosophical Society in 1895 to consider a two-hour shift forward in October and a two-hour shift back in March. Parliamentarian Thomas Kay Sidey spent 20 years reintroducing a bill that would implement the daylight saving measure arguing that the schedule adjustment would give people more time during the summers to enjoy the outdoors and cut down consumption of artificial light. His labor paid off in 1927, when he passed the Summer Time Act, which trialed an extra hour of daylight.
Britain’s William Willett proposed in 1907 setting clocks forward in the summer. Willett proposed setting clocks forward 80 minutes through four 20 minute increments beginning in April. Willett died from influenza in 1915, but Britain implemented the daylight saving time a year later to save fuel during World War I.
In the United States, Daylight Saving Time was adopted in 1918.
- 1918: An Act to preserve daylight and provide standard time for the United States
- 1966: The Uniform Time Act of 1966 (15 U.S. Code Section 260a/Public Law 89-387)
- 1972: Congress revised the law to provide that, if a State was in two or more time zones, the State could exempt the part of the State that was in one time zone while providing that the part of the State in a different time zone would observe Daylight Saving Time
- 1986: Amended to begin at 2:00 a.m. on the first Sunday of April and end at 2:00 a.m. on the last Sunday of October
- 2005: Energy Policy Act of 2005 extended Daylight Saving Time in the U.S. beginning in 2007 to begin at 2:00 a.m. on the second Sunday of March and end at 2:00 a.m. on the first Sunday of November
Article by: W. Jerrold Samford, Environmental Compliance Specialist, Troutman Sanders