March 10, 2023
Starting in March, most of the United States prepares for clocks “to spring forward” — better known as Daylight Saving Time, or DST. It’s that time of year when your oven clock needs manual adjusting as well as that wristwatch you wear on special occasions. Not every part of the US makes the switch on the second Sunday in March — most of Arizona doesn’t with the exception of the Navajo Nation, and neither do Hawaii and some US territories. Many other countries in the Northern Hemisphere follow this ritual, which includes a switch back to standard time in the fall.
Once suggested by Benjamin Franklin as a cost-saving measure, Daylight Saving Time was ultimately created to extend daylight hours during the summer months. The practice was first implemented across the US and Europe to save energy costs during World War I and was reinstated during World War II. The Uniform Time Act of 1966 established a uniform Daylight Saving Time system across the US.
Every so often, there’s talk about making the annual “spring forward” permanent. The country briefly tried permanent Daylight Saving Time during the energy crisis of the 1970s. There has since been a lot of research on the impact permanent DST would have on health and safety. Some US politicians are pushing for it once again, most recently reintroducing the Sunshine Protection Act of 2023 in the Senate, though passage is not expected anytime soon.
Explore how a change to permanent DST would affect your life.