This Is What It Would Look Like If We Abolished Daylight Saving Time

Daylight Saving Time Starts on March 10
Photo credit © Porojnicu | Dreamstime.com
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The second Sunday in March, better known as the beginning of Daylight Saving time (NOT Daylight Savings time) is a great and terrible day. It is the day we set our clocks ahead an hour at 2 A.M. and the day most of us will lose close to an hour of sleep whether we want to or not. Research suggests Daylight Saving time is bad for us in all kinds of ways. There is a rise in the number of heart attacks, the number of traffic deaths—overnight hourly employees even get a pay cut because one of their hours vanishes into the ether.   

While different places across America dabbled in Daylight Saving going back before WWII, everyone’s internal and external clocks started getting screwed with in 1966 when the US government passed the Uniform Time Act that said every state must observe Daylight Saving unless it specifically opted out. Since the passage of the act, Arizona and Hawaii did opt out and are currently the only two states that don’t observe the time change. But a move is afoot to change the law around Daylight Saving in a number of states. A California proposition would allow the legislature to put the state on permanent Daylight Saving time. Florida has already passed an identical law, but right now, federal law only permits states to opt out of Daylight Saving, not invoke it permanently.  

Sweeping changes across the country, if they happen at all, remain far off in the future, especially considering most people aren’t actually bothered about springing ahead or falling back. But a cartographer named Andy Woodruff came up with some cool ways to see what it would look like if we got rid of Daylight Saving time or implemented it permanently all over the country. Check out his interactive visualizations here and see how many of hours of daylight you’d end up with under different daylight regimes.