Farm Ireland

Monday 10 December 2018

Tick Tock: Time is running out for daylight saving with new proposal to stop changing clocks next year

(Stock photo)
(Stock photo)
FarmIreland Team

FarmIreland Team

The EU could bring forward proposals to stop the annual daylight saving procedure or putting back and forward the clocks to next year.

The European Commission has proposed to end the biannual clock change in 2019 - two years earlier than the previously announced date of 2021.

MEP for Ireland South and Ireland's representative on the European Parliament Working Group on the bi-annual Clock Change has welcomed the proposal which would allow Member States to decide whether they want to maintain permanent summer - or wintertime.

Member States would notify the European Commission of their decision. After this, they would no longer be able to apply seasonal clock changes. Member States will remain free to decide which time zone to apply to their territories, he said.

"I am pleased that the Commission is moving quickly on this, particularly given discussions last week were around an end date of 2021 for the clock change.

"An earlier date, which we called for, is better as it puts pressure on us to begin the legislative process immediately, and hopefully get it completed by the beginning of next year or sooner," he said.

“The Austrian Presidency have signalled a willingness to move quickly on this issue too, and will raise it at the next Council meeting later in the month. This shows a real willingness to push through this important legislation.

"The proposal is good as an initial first step, and it will now be up to the Parliament and Council to agree on a common approach.

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"I think a lot of the discussion ahead will focus on a smooth transition towards an EU-wide workable system. It would bring logistical difficulties to have Member States on many different time zones, and so it would make sense to ensure there is some degree of alignment. That is for the negotiations ahead.

"This will bring important benefits to EU citizens. In the consultation, citizens attributed negative health impacts, road accidents and increased energy use, and so this change will bring important benefits in this regard."

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