History of the time change in the European Union

History of the time change in the European Union

History of the time change in the European Union, In the first EU summertime directive, which came into force in 1981, only a common date for the start of summertime was established. Subsequently, successive directives maintained a common date for the start (the last Sunday in March) and two for the end: the last Sunday in September for continental countries and the fourth Sunday in October for the United Kingdom and Ireland.

This situation continued until the adoption of the seventh directive, in 1994. Then, for the first time, a common date for the end was established: the last Sunday of October, from 1996 onwards. In that directive, a unified calendar was established 16 years after the adoption of the first time change directive.

Finally, the current directive, dating from 2001, extends the provisions of the directive without limit. In 2007, the European Commission presented a  report that underlined “the importance of maintaining the harmonized schedule”, it does so to “guarantee the proper functioning of the internal market, the main objective of the directive”.

For this reason, the EU does not contemplate that any partner changes its schedule, but, if the end of DST is carried out, they should all do it at the same time. For years, several countries in northern Europe, such as Lithuania, Finland, Poland and Sweden have strongly demanded the abandonment of this system. The reasons to be against the change of time, are those already known, are fundamentally physiological.

Russia changes with daylight saving time

For example, in Russia, daylight saving time was first introduced in 1917 by the provisional government and abandoned by the decree of the Soviet government five months later.

It was reintroduced in April 1981 until in 2011, when President Dmitry Medvedev announced its cancellation. Already in the 2012 campaign, Vladimir Putin spoke of returning to daylight saving time, although he finally decided not to implement it.

The time change in the United States

In North America, they change the time in the United States, Canada, and Mexico, except for some areas. This is the case in Arizona and Hawaii, in the United States. Also from Sonora, in Mexico, and Saskatchewan, in Canada.

The curious case of the time change in Arizona

Most of Arizona, with the exception of the territory that is part of the Navajo Nation, is governed by what is known as Mountain Standard Time (MST), throughout the year. The time zone is -7 with respect to the Greenwich meridian (UTC-7).

Arizona does not follow DST under the US Energy Policy Act of 2005. Under this rule, every state or territory has the right to decide whether or not to be part of DST.

If a State (like most of those that make up the United States) follows the DST, it has to adapt to the rest of the country. That is: from the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November.

The root cause for Arizona to remain outside of DST is that it is deemed unnecessary. The argument for not extending daylight hours in the afternoon is that people prefer to do their activities in lower temperatures once the sun has gone down.

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