By Jonathan Isaby
Momentum appears to be growing behind Rebecca Harris' Private Member's Bill to reconsider the pros and cons of permanent Daylight Saving Time and run a three-year trial of it.
Today her parliamentary colleague, Tobias Ellwood, the MP for Bournemouth East, bas published a glossy pamphlet, Time to Change the Clocks, arguing that the case for permanently moving the clocks forward an hour is "stronger than ever" and would carry a wide variety of benefits, namely:
- Safer roads: There would be a reduction of over 100 deaths and over 200 serious injuries each year by virtue of lighter evenings when there is a higher peak of road activity.
- Reduction in NHS (A&E) budget: Fewer accidents would result in around £200m savings by the NHS each year. This would also impact on insurance claims.
- Reduction in crime: More light later into the evening would result in reduced crime statistics across the nation, as most crime takes place under cover of darkness later in the day.
- Improved health and wellbeing: Increased opportunities for exposure to daylight (around 235 additional hours of after school and after work daylight a year), which would encourage more participation in outdoor activities and sports and help tackle the obesity time bomb.
- Boost to UK tourism: More daylight in the early evenings would deliver a boost to British tourism of an estimated £2.5bn per annum, with an increase in overall spending in the UK leisure sector of £3.5bn.
- A reduction in energy bills: More hours of available sunlight towards the end of the day would see about 5% reduction in energy bills across the UK as a whole.
- A reduction in the UK’s carbon footprint: The reduction in energy would also lead to about a 2.2% national reduction in CO2 emissions during the winter months equating to 1.2m tonnes of CO2; equivalent to removing 20,000 cars off the road for 6 months over winter.
- Increased international business and trade: One hour time difference with central Europe results in four hours loss of overlap in the working day. Changing the clocks would not only reconcile our time gap with Europe, it would help towards improving the overlap with the world’s biggest emerging markets, namely China and India.
There are a variety of informative graphics like that below, demonstrating the difference that the change would make in terms of creating more daylight hours when people can appreciate them.
Click here to download the full pamphlet.