Friday, April 4, 2008

Daylight Saving Time or DST Implementation

Do you ever remember the time when the Philippines introduced short periods of Daylight Saving Time (DST)? Well, I couldn't recall that period. I was still in Kindergarten when the Philippine goverment implemented Daylight Saving time between 1986 and 1998 when it experienced energy crisis during those period. In April 2006 the Department of Trade and Industry proposed that Daylight Saving Time again be implemented to combat rising oil prices. That proposal didn't reaped positive outcome. Many countries worldwide have changed time on different schedules because of the Daylight Saving Time. I first heard of it from my Prince last year when he informed me that they will have to move their clock an hour forward from 2am to 3am. And on Sunday, April 6, New South Wales will again put their clock an hour back from 3am to 2am. This made me really curious. What is Daylight Saving Time? Why is there a need for Daylight Saving time?
Day Light Saving Time
Daylight Saving Time or summertime in many countries, is the manner of setting the clock an hour or two ahead so that the sun appears to rise one hour later in the morning, when people are fast asleep, and sets one hour later in the evening, extending day time longer. Thanks to Benjamin Franklin's brilliant idea in 1784 while he was still an Ambassador to France. Franklin was famous for his proverb: "Early to bed, and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise". It was only in the 1900's, when several countries in Europe adopted it, for energy-saving strategy during the World War I.
DST primarily benefits the environment by reducing evening electricity use. This is one of the ways of getting more light out of the day. It works to the advantage of people who exploits daylight for certain tasks and activities like sports and industries employing workers at day time. It allows extra daylight after work. It saves up energy due to less artificial light needed during the evening hours—clocks are set one hour ahead during the spring, and one hour back to standard time in the autumn. Many countries observe DST, and many do not. Many have taken to heart the sayings:
“Spring forward, fall back” or “spring ahead, fall behind.”
According to some observers, DST has done a poor job in keeping its objective- saving energy. It has created confusion and havoc to some industries. Many computers are set up and hard to change because some governments legislate their own DST changes from time to time to work to their advantage. Many people come to work late, CEOs missing important appointments, and farmer's job still revolves around the sun regardless of which way the clock turns.
Philippines on DST?
Knowing both the pros and cons of DST, would you like the Philippines to have DST like other countries do? Countries observing DST commonly have four seasons: winter, spring, summer and fall. Is it applicable here in the tropical climate of the Philippines? In my opinion, we have little need for DST because it doesn't fit our very hot climate. We don't have seasonal variations. Lastly, I think we must be careful in prescribing a cure. The government authorities better make sure that they have the proper diagnosis to our country's ailing condition before they seek to cure. And I suggest, they better cure themselves first.

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