Winter Time Zone in Poland: Why and When Do We Change Time?

In Poland, winter time lasts from the last Sunday in October until the last Sunday in March. This means that the clocks are turned back one hour in October and then turned forward one hour in March. According to the Polish Prime Minister’s Decree, Poland is required to switch from daylight saving time to winter time every year. This decree covers the period from 2022 to 2026.

According to the provisions of the law, the time changes in Poland:

  • in 2022. – on October 30,
  • in 2023. – on October 29,
  • in 2024. – on October 27,
  • in 2025. – on October 26,
  • in 2026. – on October 25.

When and Why Was The Time First Changed?

The idea of changing between summer and winter time was first proposed by George Vernon Hudson. He was a New Zealand astronomer, in the early 20th century. Hudson was disappointed that his favorite golf course was closed when he finished work. In order to extend the amount of daylight available after work, he proposed moving the clocks forward by two hours. That was his concept known as daylight saving time. Hudson submitted his proposal to a member of parliament in 1908, but it wasn’t accepted at that time.

The first country that officially adopted daylight saving time was Austria-Hungary. They implemented the change during World War I in 1916. Their goal was to save on coal consumption. Other countries, including Great Britain and Russia, followed them soon.

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The United States implemented daylight saving time in 1918. From 1945 to 1949 and from 1957 to 1964, the time was changed regularly in Germany as well. Since 1977, time has been changed regularly in many countries as a way to make more efficient use of daylight.

The idea is that by moving standard geographic time forward by one hour during the summer, the hours of human activity will align better with the hours of maximum sunlight.

However, studies have shown that this change can actually result in higher energy consumption.

There Are Many Opinions

The practice of changing the time seasonally has been controversial since the very beginning. While some argue that it has a positive impact on the economy and energy savings, others disagree and deny. In Poland this topic is brought up in relation to each successive election.

Proponents of changing the time seasonally often cite the following arguments:

  • Energy savings: By shifting the time on clocks, people are able to take advantage of the extra daylight in the evenings, which can result in lower energy costs for lighting and heating.
  • Health benefits: By being able to be active outdoors later in the evening, people can improve their health and well-being.
  • Reduction in traffic accidents: shifting the time on clocks can lead to fewer traffic accidents because drivers are less likely to be on the road during the darkest hours.

On the other hand, opponents of changing the time seasonally often raise the following points:

  • Illusory energy savings: any potential energy savings are offset by the fact that people tend to get up earlier in the summer and turn on lights in the morning.
  • Coordination challenges: the effort required to coordinate the time change and rearrange equipment and schedules can offset any potential energy savings.
  • Insufficient time difference: one-hour time difference in the winter is not enough to compensate for the lack of sunlight in the morning and afternoon.

Why is Giving Up Time Changes Problematic?

One significant issue with changing the time seasonally is the impact it can have on computer systems. Most computers are programmed to adjust to the time change twice a year and are generally able to handle the shift without major issues. However, the increasing reliance on computerization in various aspects of life can make the time change more challenging.

Another issue is the potential for communication problems between countries that observe the time change and those that do not. Time-sensitive activities such as financial transactions, ticket purchases, and stock market trades rely on systems that are synchronized on an hourly basis. If the time is not consistent across countries, it can lead to potential errors.

Additionally, changing the time seasonally can cause problems with the human body’s adaptation to the time shift. This can lead to health issues such as sleep disturbances and an overall decline in well-being.

What Do The Numbers Say?

A study conducted by the National Bureau of Standards in the United States in 1976 found that energy savings were not as significant as expected (actually, a 1% reduction was expected).

When parts of Australia adopted the time change in 2000, they didn’t observe a reduction in energy consumption. Even worse – morning consumption actually increased. These findings suggest that the impact of daylight saving time on energy consumption may not be as significant as previously thought.

There have been numerous studies, and those conducted in the United States and Australia have found that the expected energy savings have not been realized.

In fact, some studies have proven that energy consumption may actually increase. These findings suggest that the impact of daylight saving time on energy consumption is not certain and may vary depending on a number of factors.

While the impact of daylight saving time on energy consumption may be uncertain, there have been some other positive effects:

  • Increased sales: Retail stores have reported increased sales due to the extended hours of daylight, as more people are able to shop during the clear evening hours.
  • Improved traffic safety: The extra hour of daylight in the evenings lead to fewer traffic accidents.

Which Countries Change The Time?

The list of countries that observe daylight saving time is quite extensive and includes more than 60 countries. Most of them are located in Europe, but there are also the United States, and Canada. However, not all countries around the world implemented daylight saving time.

The exceptions in Europe include Iceland, Russia, and Belarus. In addition, most countries in South America and Africa do not practice that solution. These countries generally follow standard time all year.