Winter time, the history of time change

winter time

Twice a year, our habits are disrupted by the time change. So, even if this procedure will perhaps disappear one day, this Saturday 29 October, don’t forget to set your watch back an hour before going to bed. When it’s 3 a.m., it will actually be 2 a.m. Let’s find out why we are switching to winter time.

The origins of the time change

The change from summer to winter is an old idea. The change of time has been evoked in order to save energy and for a question of practicality. In the mid-19th century, the Italian Giuseppe Barilli proposed unifying the times across the time zones. This system of harmonisation took time to set up. The Scotsman Sir Sandford Fleming invented a method in which the globe is divided into 24 time zones with the same reference point: the Greenwich meridian. However, it was only much later, with the development of rail transport, that the need to unify time was felt. Various countries around the world began to adopt this change.

Time change around the world

Worldwide, the time change is applied by about 70 countries. Some countries near the equator, some countries in Africa and Indonesia do not use it. Other countries, such as Brazil, Canada and the United States, do not apply it uniformly. In order to facilitate transport, communication and trade within the EU, the European Parliament decided to harmonise the time change dates in 1998. Since then, we have had to move our watches forward one hour in the spring and backward one hour in the autumn.

We hope you have learned something from this article and remember that the time change will take place this weekend, on Saturday night.

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