These Maps Prove That Daylight Saving Time Is Ruining Our Lives

Photo of Alice Johnston
Food Editor13 November 2017

If you like more than a modicum of sunlight in your days, winter can be the worst thing ever.

Working full time, many people will only experience the sun shining on them as they walk to work or during their lunch break – that is if it’s even sunny at all that day.

Lots of people think that Daylight Saving Time (DST) makes their lives worse by reducing the amount of sunlight they see.

Daylight Saving Time as normal | © Andy Woodruff

DST was created to curb electrical demand, the thought being that homes would use an hour less of electricity if occupants had the sun to light their homes. It fails to do this, instead meaning that buildings need an additional hour of air conditioning in the summer to cool them down.

DST tramples over well-established sleep schedules and has no concern for commuting, exam start times or un-smart watches, ultimately resulting in more than $400 million in economic losses every year.

As if that wasn’t enough, DTS has also been linked to an increased number of heart attacks, road accidents and it deeply affects those suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder.

If Daylight Savings Time didn’t exist | © Andy Woodruff

So if you’ve ever wondered what life would look like without Daylight Saving Time, you can rest assured that life would be a little bit more peaceful.

But would it actually result in more hours of sunlight and a better schedule than the one we’re currently on? These maps may give you a hint.

Cartographer Andy Woodruff, who works for Axis Maps, shows that the outcomes of DST don’t affect the US equally.

If Daylight Saving Time was always in effect | © Andy Woodruff

In New York, for example, you would have to wake up at 4.30am and go to bed insanely early for DST not to increase the number of your waking daylight hours.

His blog post points out that, while some states benefit – Hawaii, for example, which has a sunrise before 7am and a sunset after 5pm every single day – others do not.

Essentially, the takeaway is that having small amounts of sun in winter sucks no matter what time of day you’re in darkness.

Check out the interactive tool on his blog that allows you to discover the best place to live depending on your sunlight preference.

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