In order to conserve energy, President-elect Barak Obama wants to eliminate daylight saving time.
Twice a year, a bunch of countries, including most of the United States, practice daylight saving time or DST, shifting one hour ahead in the spring and one hour back in the fall.
Turns out, according to two academics on the NYT Op-Ed page, there is little scientific proof that this practice, in any way, reduces energy consumption. It also turns out that this practice could be wasteful, a bit annoying, and a lot of people, including Obama, want to get rid of it.
A study in Indiana, a state that recently started DST, showed an overall increase of 1 percent in residential electricity use with occasional increases of 2 to 4 percent in late spring and early fall. So much for conserving energy.
While DST is great for reducing in-door lighting, the shift in time increases the demand for air conditioning during hot summer evenings and increased heating in early spring and late fall mornings. The energy suckers of heat and A/C could eliminate any savings from reduced lighting and, as the Indiana study showed, actually increase electricity consumption. [via]
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