Photo: Flickr / bnpositive
Lots of people gripe about waking up on Daylight Savings Time turnover day.They’re likely to gripe even more when they find out “Daylight Savings” is actually a misnomer.
A 2011 study by environmental researchers Matthew J. Kotchen and Laura E. Grant (via WSJ’s Real Time Economics) found switching actually cost each an Indiana resident an average of $3.29 per year in increased electricity bills, or approximately $9 million for the entire state.
Anything people save on lighting costs — savings that constituted the original goal for DST — are canceled out by increased energy use for heating and cooling.
Moving an hour of sunlight from the early morning to the evening (relative to clock time) increases electricity consumption for cooling because demand for cooling is greater in the evening and the buildup of solar radiation throughout the day means that the evening is hotter.
The researchers do not calculate the cost of ending DST and make no recommendation on what should be done.
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