Summer Time 2017 Set to Begin this Sunday in European Union

By Jesse Sokolow on 23 March 2017
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Summer Time will begin this Sunday in the European Union at 1 a.m. GMT. At this time, which is 2 a.m. in Central Europe, clocks should be set ahead by one hour.

The change will put both sides of the Atlantic back in sync after a two-week period that followed the switch to Daylight Saving Time, on March 12, in most of the United States and Canada.

Summer Time, called British Summer Time or BST in the United Kingdom and Sommerzeit in Austria and Germany, will end on October 29, 2017 and return on March 25, 2018.  Daylight Saving Time in the United States and Canada will end on November 5, 2017 and resume on March 11, 2018.

Summer Time is traditionally observed in all European countries except for Russia, Belarus, and Iceland. Indeed, Russia permanently switched to Winter Time two Octobers ago while adding two new time zones, giving the country an aggregate of 11.

The concept of Summer, or Daylight Saving, Time was conceived to manage the changing amounts of daylight that occurs during the year, with the goal of maximizing the hours of available sunlight during the typical workday. The underlying concept was first proposed in 1784 by Benjamin Franklin, who believed it would save an “immense sum.”

Germany was the first country, in 1916 during the First World War, to advance the time to take advantage of more sunlight and save coal.  The move was quickly followed by Britain, France, and other European nations.  The United States implemented Daylight Saving Time in 1918 and again in 1919.

By adjusting clocks ahead by one hour, people generally have more daylight available during the workday. For example, in the case of someone who typically wakes at 7:00 a.m., the individual would have to rise at 6:00 a.m. if they wished to take advantage of the additional daylight, since in the spring the sun rises earlier each day. Instead, by moving the clock ahead by one hour, that person can continue to arise at 7:00 a.m. and enjoy more daylight in the early evening hours.

In order to avoid problems with Summer Time, European travelers should remember to set their watches and analog clocks one hour forward, as well as any computer, smartphone, or other electronic device that does not adjust automatically, on Saturday before retiring.

Most of Asia, Africa, and South America do not observe Daylight Saving Time at all.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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