What Is Daylight Saving Time?
Daylight Saving Time (DST) refers to the system of altering the clock by moving it ahead during warmer seasons such that daylight is more in the evening than mornings. In the United States, this alteration of the clocks means that the time is moved forward by one hour. DST in the US ranges from the second Sunday of March to the first Sunday in November, which is about 34 weeks or 238 days. These figures indicate that the US spends around 65% of its year with DST. Usually, the phrases "spring forward" and "fall back" are aptly used to describe DST. This phrase means that clocks are moved forward by one hour in spring while the time alteration is reversed in fall. In 2018, the DST began on March 11 and will end on November 4. Most of the states in the US observe DST although a few of them do not.
States That Do Not Observe DST
The few exceptions that do not use DST include Hawaii and Arizona. For the case of Arizona, there is an exception for the Navajo people since they observe DST on their tribal lands. Other regions that do not observe DST in the US include several US overseas territories.
In 1967, under the Uniform Time Act, which was enacted to promote the adoption of uniform time in the US, the state of Arizona observed DST. The reason why Arizona had to observe DST in that year is that it had not yet come up with a law that exempted it from the act. A year later, in 1968, the state came up with the statute for the exemption from DST. The state decided to come up with the exemption statue because it is one of the hottest states in the US, especially in the summer. DST would mean that the population would have an extra hour of sunlight to use their electronic devices, which are mostly cooling devices. To reduce power consumption, the state had to adopt the exemption statute. However, the people living in the Navajo Indian Reservation do not observe DST.
Unlike Arizona above, the state of Hawaii has never observed DST since it opted out of the Uniform Time Act in 1967. Hawaii has never really had a need for DST because of its tropical latitude, which means that the variation in daylight in winter and summer is not that great. This positioning means that if the state were to observe DST, then sunrise would fall closer to 7:00 AM. On April 26, 1933, the Territorial Legislature passed a bill that placed Hawaii on DST from the last Sunday of April all the way to September’s last Sunday. On May 21, 1933, three weeks after passing the law, the law was revoked.
The US territories of Guam, American Samoa, the Northern Mariana Islands, the United States Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico do not use DST since they are located in the tropics. However, it is important to note that the Independent State of Samoa has observed DST from 2010 but American Samoa, which smaller, cannot use DST because of the Uniform Time Act.
Other Countries That Do Not Observe DST
Only about 62 of the world's 195 countries observe DST. Although Daylight Saving Time commonly practiced in North America and European Summer Time (EST) practiced by many European nations, there are few countries from the rest of the world that observe DST. Brazil and Paraguay are the only countries in South America with regions observing DST. Few countries in the Caribbean and Asia observe DST with no countries in Central America and Africa; Namibia being the last to drop the practice in 2017.