Daylight Saving Time: Spring ahead on Sunday

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Sunday, the government changes the official time, as it does twice a year, and Alaskans will move their clocks ahead by one hour to be on Daylight Saving Time until Nov. 6, when time moves back an hour to Standard Time. The changeover officially takes place at 2 am Sunday. For those who get up at 7 am, it will feel like 6 am.

Every Spring there are complaints from those who find it hard to make the switch to an hour earlier than usual. They also don’t like that it’s suddenly dark once again when they get up. On the flip side, evenings will feel longer, with sunset an hour later than on Saturday. In Anchorage, civil twilight is ending at about 8:40 pm this weekend, and by March 31, civil twilight will be 9:25 pm.

Under federal law, states are allowed to opt out of Daylight Saving Time and remain on Standard Time, but are not allowed to remain on Daylight Time. Alaska lawmakers occasionally have tried to maintain a time standard, but bills have failed to progress.

In 2021, Rep. Daniel Ortiz of Ketchikan introduced House Bill 31 to recognize daylight saving year-round if Congress makes the move by 2030.

In 2021, lawmakers in Congress once again proposed staying on Daylight Saving Time year-round with the Sunshine Protection Act. It was sponsored by Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Florida Congressman Vern Buchanan. Rubio has long advocating that Congress “lock the clock” and filed legislation for the last four years to end the twice-annual changing of time.

“We Americans are about to suffer another ridiculous time change as we spring forward this weekend,” Rubio said in a video. “Switching in and out of Daylight Saving Time is outdated, and is only a source of annoyance and confusion.” He added it is time to “put all this stupidity behind us.”

Several states are proposing moving to Daylight Saving Time permanently, including:

In 2021, Alabama passed an act that would put the state on permanent Daylight Saving Time if the Sunshine Protection Act passes.

Arizona and Hawaii do not observe Daylight saving time. Arizona observes Mountain Standard Time all year.

The Navajo Nation in the northeastern Arizona observes Daylight Saving Time, putting it an hour off the rest of the state for part of the year.

In 2018, Florida was the first state to pass a resolution to observe Daylight Saving Time year-round, if federal law changes.

In 2021, Georgia passed a permanent Daylight Saving Time law, pending changes in federal law.

Idaho has two time zones; the southern part of the state is in Mountain Time, and the panhandle in the north is in Pacific Time. In 2020, the Legislature and governor passed a law that says if Washington state makes Daylight Saving Time permanent, Northern Idaho will do so as well.

Oregon also has two time zones. A state law passed in 2019 would keep Oregon on Daylight Saving Time if Congress ever acts. But Malheur County in Eastern Oregon is on Mountain Time, and would be the only part of the state not moving to DST.

Washington state approved the change to permanent Daylight Savings Time in 2019, pending on congressional action.

Wyoming’s legislature decided 2020 to move to Daylight Saving Time, if approved by Congress — and also if nearby states of Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Utah also made the move.

Fewer than 40 percent of the countries in the world move to Daylight Saving Time, and not all countries that do change their clocks do so on the same day. Where it makes the most difference is with those further from the Equator, while those living close to the Equator might not notice much change.

22 COMMENTS

  1. Daylight Savings Time makes no sense in Alaska. We should be on Standard Time all the time. If we switch to permanent DST, as stupid as that would be, it’s better than switching twice a year.

    • I would argue that Daylight Saving Time makes no sense anywhere. It is a stupid game and twice-yearly hassle with no productive results.
      .
      I once worked at a laboratory, which ran around the clock, and the EPA more than once attempted to fine us because our instruments on which their analyses were being conducted necessarily recorded TWO 1:00 AM to 2:00 AM periods every spring, introducing an ambiguity in the exact length of the time frame since the instrument was calibrated for that run.

      • Jeff,
        I had a similar experience with the EPA, the fact that we had “missing data” for a one hour period would always trip up a new inspector. Uh yeah, that’s when the time changes.

        • Sorry for the mistake in my post above — I was of course referencing the “fall back” episode in the autumn, rather than the “spring forward” in April (now March).

  2. The main reason for DST is that if we don’t move ahead we will be 4 hours behind the east coast. This matters for financial reasons and very importantly, voting. Go to bed an hour earlier and deal with it.

  3. Leave it at standard time ALL the time. For those going to work in the AM it would be lighter outside…safety wise it might make a difference.
    Getting one hour darker in the evening would be safer also…kids play outside long enough in the evening and would be less tempted to get in trouble or skip schoolwork. Sleep is very important to a child’s well-being. They can stay up late in the summer!

  4. It’s really silly when the sun goes down tomorrow as it does out on the Y- K in summer. Remember this region is further south then Anchorage, it’s just alot further west.

  5. Minus part of the Aelutians, the whole state is locked on Juneau time. Places like Nome and Bethel should have a time zone 2 hours behind current Alaska time for the daylight savings time to make any sense. Besides, with the massive variation in sunlight hours from summer to winter, there are like 2 weeks in the spring and 2 weeks in the fall where daylight savings would even line up with clock time.

    Abolish the system.

    • Hugh, Juneau was and should be on Pacific Time, it’s way further east then Anchorage. Yes, In Nome and up the North west coast being on Anchorage time is just plain stupid.

  6. Now here is something the Cowardly Lion can weigh in on. Oh wait, no he can’t – it’s too controversial!

  7. Every year we see the same grumbling about Daylight Saving Time. As a sun worshipper, I welcome the longer evenings each spring, and Daylight Saving Time is a bonus. It’s like summer comes a month earlier.

    I was really pleased in 1983 when we permanently shifted from the former Alaska-Hawaii Standard Time zone to the new Alaska Standard Time, one hour earlier. People grumbled about that too. Without these changes, our mid-summer solar sunset would be at 9:40 pm, not 11:40.

    • It doesn’t add any length to the day. And celestially, Anchorage is alway 2x Daylight Savings time anyway, even on Standard Time.

  8. George Soros has funded a non profit who’s mission is to “ maintain time-static continuation of social and economic protocols”. That seems weird to me.

  9. Such a setback to spring. And try to get kids to bed when it’s still light and roust them up in the morning ~~groggy and grumpy. So counter productive.

  10. I got a real bang out of finding out the Navajo Nation in Arizona does the DST thing. My deceased father-in-law (from Arizona) had a favorite joke about DST. It was an Indian saying that “Only a white man would think cutting one foot off the end of a blanket and sewing it on the other end would make the blanket longer”. I guess it could be considered a racist joke but I always laughed when he told it.

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