For the last several years, the debate over this measure has intensified between proponents and critics. In fact, everything seems to indicate that the days are numbered for daylight saving time.
The main issues that form the basis of the debate, focus on whether or not we actually save money on our electricity bills and if it is good for our health.
Let’s just remind ourselves of why the clocks change and if it really helps save money on our energy bills.
How do the clocks change?
This is the easy part:
- On the last Sunday of March, 2am becomes 3am.
- On the last Sunday of October, 3am becomes 2am.
Who invented hours?
Since ancient times, various civilisations have adjusted their activities in accordance with the sun, dividing the day into 12-hour periods, better known as temporary hours.
This system, based on the hours of sun, was used until the 14th century. Then the first mechanical clocks were made and therefore the days were adjusted to 24 hours. This is how the fixed hour system was introduced.
Who suggested changing the time?
One of the first supporters of changing the time twice a year was Benjamin Franklin, a practitioner of electrical science and an American politician. His favourite phrase was: "Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise".
He realised that, by getting up early, he made better use of daylight hours and therefore saved electricity. Many of his studies and publications focused on how to make the most of daylight hours and how to save energy. However, these publications did not make an impression on people, since there was no fixed timetable for most activities.
When were the clocks first changed?
It wasn’t until the arrival of the railway (end of the 19th century), that fixed times as we know them today were established.
It was the British builder, William Willet, who reached the same conclusions as Benjamin Franklin while riding his horse at dawn. Most of the shutters on houses were closed during the early morning hours, which was a waste of useful daylight hours for homes in England. This concern led him to publish several studies, but his theories were not applied until the First World War.