Do We Really Need Daylight Savings Time?

(This was written last year and I am re-printing it ….)


Daylight saving time will end at 2:00 a.m. this Sunday, Nov. 2, 2014, and it will be time to set the clocks back an hour.

History of Daylight Saving Time (from Accuweather)

The Standard Time Act was passed in 1918, which officially established time zones and incorporated daylight saving months into federal law. This was during World War I when national efforts were made to conserve materials for the war effort. It was believed that if daytime hours could correspond better with natural light, fewer tasks would need to be done at night. Homes would need to use less energy to stay lit.

After the war, daylight saving time was revoked. When food conservation became mandatory in the United States during World War II (rather than just being encouraged as it was in WWI), daylight saving time was once again instated. Referred to as “War Time,” it spanned from early February until the end of September.

Conservation, from fuel to food to silver, was stressed by Entente and Associated power governments during WWI, as seen in this poster from the Canadian Food Board. (Photo/Wikimedia Commons)

After the war, “Peace Time” was back in effect and the issue of daylight saving time was handled on a local level. This led to a great deal of confusion as different locations were constantly operating at different times. The Uniform Time Act was passed in 1966 to solve the problem. States were given the option to opt out of daylight saving time if they passed proper ordinances.

With daylight saving no longer a federal mandate, some states have chosen not to observe it. Among the states that don’t currently participate in daylight saving are Arizona and Hawaii, with several U.S. territories choosing not to follow it as well. Arizona has such intense heat in daylight hours that it’s not considered a benefit for its residents to be out for as much of it as possible.

As for Hawaii, its location closer to the equator gives them more consistent days year round. They wouldn’t be gaining or losing, many daylight hours by observing the clock change.

Daylight saving time is observed in many countries all over the world, though the time frame for it varies. In the United States, it ran from the last Sunday in April to the first Sunday in October until the Energy Policy Act was passed in 2005. As of 2007, daylight saving now runs from the second Sunday in March until the first Sunday in November.

Is Energy Being Saved?


It doesn’t appear to be needed anymore. I am sure that if it was discussed in Congress or at the state level people would “rail on them” that they have more important things to do. Well, sometimes the daily deeds must be dealt with.

Let’s get rid of Daylight Savings Time.


The opinions expressed in this blog belong to Tom Knuppel.