Sunday , June 7 2020
Home / Dr. Eamonn Butler /We’ve moved the clocks forward, let’s keep it that way

We’ve moved the clocks forward, let’s keep it that way

Summary:
Now we have put the clocks forward, we will have longer, lighter evenings.Lets’ leave it that way. Changing the clocks on everything is a hassle, and there is no scientific basis for it. In Britain, it started in 1916, based on the belief that lighter evenings would save energy during the First World War. In the Second World War we added yet another hour, with Double Summer Time.But changing the clocks does not save energy. Several US states and cities straddle time zones, and there’s no difference in their energy use.We’re told that farmers like it. They don’t: animals waiting to be fed don’t care what the clocks are saying. And farmers are only 1.5% of the workforce anyway.My Scottish relatives complain that if the clocks didn’t go back in winter, children would be going to school in the

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Now we have put the clocks forward, we will have longer, lighter evenings.

Lets’ leave it that way. Changing the clocks on everything is a hassle, and there is no scientific basis for it. In Britain, it started in 1916, based on the belief that lighter evenings would save energy during the First World War. In the Second World War we added yet another hour, with Double Summer Time.

But changing the clocks does not save energy. Several US states and cities straddle time zones, and there’s no difference in their energy use.

We’re told that farmers like it. They don’t: animals waiting to be fed don’t care what the clocks are saying. And farmers are only 1.5% of the workforce anyway.

My Scottish relatives complain that if the clocks didn’t go back in winter, children would be going to school in the dark and there would be more accidents. That’s wrong. Most road accidents happen in the evening—when people are tired after a day’s work and rushing to get home. Winter darkness just compounds the risk.

These arguments aren’t new. Boris Johnson rehearsed them in a newspaper article several years ago. Come October, he has the opportunity to do something about it—to improve our evenings and save us all a lot of hassle.

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Dr. Eamonn Butler
Eamonn Butler is Director of the Adam Smith Institute, rated one of the world’s leading policy think-tanks. He has degrees in economics, philosophy and psychology, gaining a PhD from the University of St Andrews in 1978.

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