Spring Forward Into Daylight Saving Time

Reid Kisselback
Updated: March 08, 2021 11:58 AM
Created: March 08, 2021 11:56 AM


Spring Forward Into Daylight Saving Time | Spring Forward Into Daylight Saving Time |

Daylight Saving Time begins on Sunday, March 14, 2021, at 2:00 AM  Overnight, our clocks need to “spring forward” one hour. Daylight Saving Time (DST) is the practice of moving the clocks forward one hour from Standard Time during the summer months, and changing them back again in the fall. The general idea is that this allows us all to make better use of natural daylight.

Since 2007, DST begins in the United States on the second Sunday in March, when people move their clocks forward an hour at 2AM local standard time (so at 2AM. on that day, the clocks will then read 3AM local daylight time). Daylight saving time then ends on the first Sunday in November, when clocks are moved back an hour at 2AM local daylight time (so they will then read 1AM local standard time).


Daylight Saving Time Start And End Points Over The Next Few Years | https://www.almanac.com/content/when-daylight-saving-time# Daylight Saving Time Start And End Points Over The Next Few Years | https://www.almanac.com/content/when-daylight-saving-time#

Today, about 40% of countries worldwide use it to make better use of daylight and to conserve energy. Most of the United States and Canada observe DST on the same dates with a few exceptions. Hawaii and Arizona are the two U.S. states that don't observe Daylight Saving Time, though the  Navajo Nation, in northeastern Arizona, does follow DST, according to NASA.

Regions farthest away from the equator and closer to the poles get the most benefit from the DST clock change, because there is a more dramatic change in sunlight throughout the seasons due to the tilted axis of rotation the Earth has.

Many people believe that farmers were the driving force behind Daylight Saving Time. In fact, farmers were its strongest opponents and, as a group, resisted the change from the beginning. The primary reason for DST has long been to save energy. The time change was first instituted in the United States during World War I. Before being made permanent by the Uniform Time Act which was passed in 1966. Before the act was passed in the United States, there was a period in which anyplace could or could not observe DST, leading to some chaotic situations. For example, if you were to take a 35-mile bus ride from Moundsville, West Virginia, to Steubenville, Ohio, you would have passed through no fewer than seven time changes, according to David Prerau, author of "Seize the Daylight: The Curious and Contentious Story of Daylight Saving Time" (Thunder's Mouth Press, 2005). At one point, Minneapolis and St. Paul were on different clocks.

As to why the time changes at 2AM, it may have to do with practicality. According to Web Exhibits, and online museum, "it's late enough that most people are home from outings and setting the clock back an hour won't switch the date to "yesterday." In addition, it's early enough not to affect early shift workers and early churchgoers." 

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