European Parliament “wants to ‘ban’ summertime”

The European Parliament has taken the first steps towards banning ‘summertime’ – the ‘hour change’ (also known as DST, daylight saving time).

The reason stems from a petition by exhausted Finns (they go from seven hours of daylight in winter, to 18 at the height of summer), and “associated health concerns”.

Explain reports, the hour-change plays havoc with citizens’ biorhythms, even though it may benefit “the transport industry, promote leisure activities and reduce the consumption of energy”.

Whatever happens, this process is unlikely to be rapid.

The twice-yearly ritual of ‘clock changing’ has been in force since World War One, and there appear to be vociferous lobbies either way.

The Irish (and Finns, of course) can’t see any sense in it.

Says Irish MEP Sean Kelly: “There are an awful lot of disadvantages to humans and animals… We are working to try and end it”.

But a study taken in 2014 showed that the majority of EU member states “were happy with the existing time arrangements”.

EU transport commissioner Violeta Bulc is also very resistant to change, warning that if countries were free to make up their own minds, the results “would be detrimental for the internal market”.

For now, the idea is for the European Commission to go through its ‘thorough assessment’ and if necessary “come up with a proposal for a revision”.

Reports Deutsche Welle: “Any proposal to amend the law would need the approval of a majority of EU member states’ governments and the (European) parliament.

“The whole process could take more than a year”.

The paper also reveals that Finland’s neighbours Russia, Belarus and Ukraine “all gave up daylight saving after a decision taken by Moscow in 2014 switched Russia to permanent winter time”.

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