Health

DAYLIGHT SAVINGS: MYTHS AND TRUTHS

Loved by some, loathed by many, daylight saving time has wide-ranging and often surprising implications.

Here are the
MYTHS and TRUTHS

MYTH

It saves energy

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Nope. A US Department of Energy study found daylight saving (not “savings”!) time reduces annual energy use by just 0.03%. Later studies from University of California-Santa Barbara and the state of Indiana found increases in energy consumption during DST.

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TRUTH

You really DO feel cruddy for a few days after

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The clock changes can raise the risk of accidents by sleep-deprived motorists, according to a 1996 New England Journal of Medicine study.

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TRUTH

You’re less likely to be robbed during DST

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In 2015, Brookings Institution found that when DST begins in the spring, robbery rates for the entire day fall an average of 7 percent, with a much larger 27 percent drop during the evening hour that gained some extra sunlight.

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MYTH

Farmers loved it

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Farmers actually fought proposals to implement DST, arguing that the changes cut productivity and made life harder. One agricultural lobby argued to repeal DST in 1919.

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TRUTH

Fewer and fewer of us think it’s worth the trouble

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Just 33% of surveyed American adults think daylight saving time is “worth the hassle,” according to a 2014 Rasmussen poll.

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