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Voters weigh in on Daylight Savings Time

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Voters weigh in on Daylight Savings Time

GLDBURGER/ISTOCK

GLDBURGER/ISTOCK

GLDBURGER/ISTOCK

Sydney Jasper, Staff Writer

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Time is usually not a concept people think they have control over, but a pending bill in the California legislature could impact how dark it is when students go to and return from school.
Starting this November, California voters can weigh in on a bill to end daylight saving time (DST). At issue is whether or not daylight savings should remain in California.
“Why would people want to change daylight savings time if it allows more sunlight and more time for me to hang with friends?” junior Teya Amen said.
While students are more concerned about the social aspects of losing daylight hours, some consumers and business owners share concerns over how the change will affect the economy and environmental resources.
Initially enacted in 1918, the Standard Time Act was proposed “to save daylight and to provide standard time for the United States,” states the Original U.S Law website. The Act was nationally terminated seven months later.
For a span of twenty-one years (1945-1966), there were no set rules for daylight savings, causing confusion for trains, broadcasting, bus and airline companies. In 1966, the Uniform Time Act was established to mandate every state in the U.S. be on the same daylight savings time. The U.S. Energy Policy Act of 2005 gave every state and territory the authority to keep daylight savings time.
The gap of twenty-one years raises questions for society.
“During Daylight Saving Time, the sun sets one hour later in the evenings, so the need to use electricity for household lighting and appliances is reduced,” the Department of Transportation said on its website. “People tend to spend more time outside in the evenings during Daylight Saving Time, which reduces the need to use electricity in the home.”
Congress believed having one standard time allowed the country to use daylight and resources more effectively, following the European Model. However, societal changes, such as more teenagers staying up late and people working non-traditional hours have put an opposite effect.
“In a 2008 study carried out shortly after the last federal change to the daylight saving schedule, the U.S. Department of Energy found annual energy usage fell about 0.03 percent,” according to the Journalist Resource site. “Yet usage near the equator, where the amount of daylight varies little, actually increased after the clocks were switched.”
The International Association for Energy Economics carried out a study in 2008 where they collected 162 estimates from 44 studies and found a slight savings in electricity when DST was enforced.
The latitude and the states’ relation to the equator must also be taken into consideration when calculating DST, because savings increases when the distance from the equator increases.
Hawaii and Arizona are the only two states in the U.S that do not participate in daylight savings time though Florida’s year-round daylight savings law is currently pending in Congress.
Some students say daylight savings is inconvenient and negatively affects them.
“Daylight savings messes with my sleeping schedule because my body is used to waking up at sunrise. So waking up before sunrise takes a toll on my body making me more tired,” junior Zachary Standridge said.
“I am affected by daylight savings because the time going back allows me to play more baseball outside,” senior Wilbur Berrios said. “We should not remove daylight savings or else I can’t play later in the evening.”
Students have pressures of school, sports, extracurriculars and family; DST can raise the issue of pushing back schedules and not allowing students to get all of their priorities done.
Experts agree that teenager need at least nine hours of sleep per night. According to the National Institutes of Health, “only 9 percent of high school students are actually meeting these recommendations.”
Coaches, however, argue that daylight savings does not affect athletes.
“The players are not affected,” assistant football coach Tony Gomez said. “They practice late already.”
Chronic sleep loss is correlated to poor school performance, a higher risk for depressive symptoms, obesity, cardiovascular problems and athletic injuries.
California voters will decide in November whether to make DST permanent.

 

 

Cites:

“The History of Daylight Saving Time.” Timeanddate.com, www.timeanddate.com/time/dst/history.html.

Lemongello, Steven. “Florida’s Year-Round Daylight Saving Time Law on Hold in Congress.”

OrlandoSentinel.com, 4 July 2018,
Lemongello, Steven. “Florida’s Year-Round Daylight Saving Time Law on Hold in Congress.” OrlandoSentinel.com, 4 July 2018, www.orlandosentinel.com/news/politics/political-pulse/os-daylight-saving-law-20180703-story.html.

iFIBER ONE News Radio. “The Voice of Mason County.” IFIBER ONE News Radio, www.ifiberonenewsradio.com/.

“Daylight Saving Time: Research on Health, Car Accidents and Energy Usage.” Journalist’s Resource, 8 Nov. 2017, journalistsresource.org/studies/environment/energy/daylight-savings-time-health-accidents-energy.

Havranek, Tomas, et al. “Does Daylight Saving Save Electricity? A Meta-Analysis.” International Association for Energy Economics :: Economics of Energy & Environmental Policy, International Association for Energy Economics, 1 June 2018, www.iaee.org/energyjournal/article/3051.

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Voters weigh in on Daylight Savings Time