Markey: 10 Years Later, DST Extension Still Delivering Savings, Smiles
Markey included Daylight Saving Time extension in 2005 Energy Policy Act
Washington (March 6, 2015) – Ten years after the passage of the 2005 Energy Policy Act that increased the portion of the year covered by Daylight Saving Time (DST), Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), who authored the extension, said it was more welcome than ever at the tail-end of a particularly harsh winter for many Americans.
As part of the 2005 energy bill, then-Rep. Markey and Rep. Upton amended the Uniform Time Act of 1996 to increase the portion of the year that is subject to DST, providing longer hours of daylight and helping consumers cut back on peak-hour electricity usage.
“In the last ten years since Congress passed the DST extension, there are few years where it is more welcome than following this harsh, cold, dark winter,” said Senator Markey. “Millions of Americans, especially those in my home state of Massachusetts, were kept indoors from record-breaking snowfall and cold, and hopefully this extra hour of evening light will give them a chance to get back out into the world again.”
The Markey amendment extended the duration of DST in the spring by changing its start date from the first Sunday in April to the second Sunday in March, and in the fall by changing its end date from the last Sunday in October to the first Sunday in November.
The amendment required that the Department of Energy prepare a report evaluating the impact of the extended DST program. The key findings of the DOE report, issued in October 2008, included:
• The total electricity savings of Extended Daylight Saving Time were about 1.3 Tera Watt-hour (TWh). This corresponds to a reduction in total use per individual of 0.5 percent per each day of Extended Daylight Saving Time.
• These savings translate to $498 million in electricity savings and reduced oil usage of 2.9 million barrels of oil.
• During Extended Daylight Saving Time, electricity savings generally occurred over a three- to five-hour period in the evening with small increases in usage during the early-morning hours.
In 1985, Rep. Markey also partnered with Rep. Carlos Moorhead (R-Calif.) to extend DST by three weeks.
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