Daylight saving time: what is it and why do we have it?

Daylight saving time: what is it and why do we have it?

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It’s almost time to turn the clocks back one hour.

On the first Sunday in November, at 2 a.m., clocks in most of the United States and many other countries go back an hour and stay there for nearly four months to what is called standard time. On the second Sunday of March, at 2 a.m., clocks are moved forward one hour to daylight saving time.

Daylight saving time has its roots in train schedules, but was put into practice in Europe and the United States to save fuel and energy during World War I by extending daylight hours, according to the data US Department of Transportation Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

Don't forget to reset the alarm clock.

The US standardized the practice when it passed the Uniform Time Act of 1966. For about eight months of the year, much of the US and dozens of other countries follow daylight savings time. And the remaining four months follow standard time.

Pro Tip: This is Daylight Savings Time, with the unique use of “savings” rather than “savings.”

In the US, states are not required by law to “roll back” or “spring forward.” Hawaii and most of Arizona do not observe Daylight Savings Time.

The twice-yearly switch is irritating enough to lawmakers of all political stripes that the US Senate passed the law in March to make summer time permanent. It was adopted unanimously. The bill still needs to pass the House of Representatives and be signed by President Joe Biden to become law. If approved, the change would not take effect until November 2023.

Benjamin Franklin he may have been the first to mention daylight saving time in 1784 when he wrote a letter to the editor Paris magazine. But it was not in widespread use until more than a century later.

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