11.05.2007

Daylight savings time has a purpose...or does it?


I found this post on AOL's Black Voices:


So your clock went back an hour on Sunday or maybe Monday. But what for? Doesn't it seem like a big waste of time?

Sorry, bad joke/pun.

When the federal government decided to extend daylight saving time by a month the big reason was energy. Right?

The annoying exercise of setting your clocks back an hour and being confused by wrong clocks around you was pushed back by one week to November under a new law this year. It began three weeks earlier than usual in March too, when clocks were pushed forward.

But guess what? You're saving energy.

Finally! Daylight saving time has a purpose ... or does it?

Energy policy professor Marilyn Brown told The Associated Press a study shows the daylight saving extension produces energy savings of about 30 cents per family. And back during World War I, when daylight saving was put in place, that 30 cents could probably buy a pack of cigarettes or a gallon of gas. Today, you can't even mail a letter with 30 cents.

The time change was to save energy because people had more daylight in the evening and didn't have to turn on lights, according to the AP. Brown says it adds up and the U.S. saves about 200 million dollars a year. Brilliant!

Others, like this Web site to "End Daylight Saving Time," are skeptical and say studies on energy savings are garbage.

DST cost U.S. companies billions to reset automated equipment, put us further out of sync with Asia and Africa time-wise, inconvenienced most of the country, all in the name of unproven studies that claim we save energy, the Web site to End DST says. ...

Out of sync is right. Get this, turning the clock back can be deadly for pedestrians.

There are a higher number of deaths after clocks are set back in fall and it's not the darkness, but the adjustment to an earlier nighttime that'll get you run over, professors Paul Fischbeck and David Gerard, both of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, told the AP.

"A three times increase in the risk is really dramatic," he said.

In other words, try not to run over any jaywalking tonight.

The researchers report that per-mile risk jumps 186 percent from October to November, but then drops 21 percent in December, amounting to about 37 extra deaths a year.

1 Notes from all over:

Thembi said...

Haha I knew this one too...I guess random trivia is my strength.

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