It’s disconcerting to be plunged back into early am darkness as I get ready for work, but it’s even more disconcerting to hear that, far from saving anything, Daylight Saving Time actually increases residential energy use as well as gasoline consumption. I read this in Organic Gardening, which cites as one of its sources Michael Downing’s Spring Forward: The Annual Madness of Daylight Savings Time.
Many of you probably already knew this; I had never given it much thought. For me, changing the clocks has always been something that I just have to remember to do. But whatever may have been the point in originator Ben Franklin’s time, the practice seems to be having the opposite effect now. Consumers are more likely to get into their cars and go shopping after work when it’s light out, so it helps convenience stores and shopping malls. Golf courses also like it. Farmers apparently don’t like it because it disrupts their schedules and their connection to the natural world (at least temporarily).
The consensus seems to be that DST is here to stay because it would be a huge pain to change it.
Jumping forward is good for after-work gardeners, or anyone who wants to work outside later. I have long taken advantage of it to enjoy an early evening drink on the patio. But what if it was done away with (as well as its companion time change in the fall)? Could we let the light fall where it may? I think I could.