In October 2022, as every year, the time has to be changed. At this time we switch from summer time to winter time – this is the change that will allow you to sleep an extra hour in the morning. It will therefore be necessary to move the hands back one hour. You have no doubt heard that the abolition of the time change has been voted on at European level. Alas, for the time being, the subject is slipping – and the energy crisis which is hitting Europe following the war in Ukraine should postpone any change around this measure on the continent for the next few years.
On what date does the change to yesterday’s time take place?
Like every year, the French switch to winter time in the night from Saturday to Sunday, the last weekend of October. This year, the time change and the transition to winter time will therefore take place on the night of October 29 to 30, 2022.
For practical reasons, the time change always takes place at 3 am. This is the time when the change has the least impact and poses the least risk. No train runs at three in the morning and international road / maritime / air traffic is at its minimum in mainland France.
The fact that the change takes place on the night of Saturday to Sunday is also a way of reducing the impact of the change as much as possible. Sunday at 3 a.m., so it will officially be 2 a.m. The following Monday, if your body wakes you up at the usual time, you will therefore have the good surprise when looking at your alarm clock to be able to stay under the duvet for an extra hour.
Switching to winter time: should the hands move forward or backward by one hour?
As we told you, the passage from summer time to winter time is usually the least unpleasant, since it is, basically, the one that allows you to sleep an extra hour in the morning. (until your body gets used to this new schedule). With the onset of winter, in fact, the days are getting shorter, and the sun tends to rise later in the morning.
By shifting everything by an hour, including your time of arrival at work, it is above all a question of taking advantage of more sunlight and using less artificial lighting. The goal is therefore that your sunrise and start of the day do not take place in the dark, but after sunrise. That is why When switching to winter time, the hands must be moved back one hour..
This means that you haven’t changed the time on your alarm clock and that your alarm rings at 7 a.m., it will actually be 6 a.m. and you can therefore close your eyes a little longer for a little respite in the arms of Morpheus. Fortunately in 2022, most electronic devices are connected and change the time automatically so as to limit any possible confusion as much as possible.
However, you will have to manually change the time on all analog (dial) clocks, whether electric or not.
When do we go back to summer time?
Daylight saving time always occurs on the last Sunday of March. In 2023, the transition to summer time will therefore take place on the night of Saturday March 25 to Sunday March 26, 2023. At 2 a.m., it will officially be three o’clock. This means that all watches and other analog dials will have to be set back one hour. And that you will have one hour less sleep.
You will nevertheless have the pleasure of enjoying longer days, and waking up systematically with the sun. .
What is the time change for?
The time change allows, according to its promoters, energy savings by making the most of a match between human activities and sunshine. This is a fairly old idea, developed at a time when street and workplace lighting relied heavily on incandescent lamps.
The problem with these lamps is that they waste more than 80% of the energy consumed to produce light. The rest is emitted in the form of heat or radiation outside the visible spectrum (UV, infrared, etc.). For several decades, however, these lamps have been pushed out in favor of other much more efficient light production methods, such as LEDs, fluorescent lamps or CFLs.
At the same time, France has opted to turn off or remove most road lights – with studies showing this forces drivers to be more vigilant and reduces the number of accidents. Therefore the expenditure on public lighting is now much lower, which is pushing a growing number of people to want the abolition of the time change.
Is the time change bad for your health?
One of the reasons cited by critics for the time change is its supposed effect on health. Indeed, some find the transition to summer time, in particular, unpleasant. But apparently there are numbers confirming a rise in health problems correlated with the change.
A 2016 study from the American College of Cardiology states that the risk of suffering a heart attack increases by 25% on the Monday following this change. However, it is necessary to qualify because other serious studies only show an increase in risk of around 5%. Also, the time change is similar to the effect of a tiny jet lag.
The kind of jet lag that happens, for example, when you visit Great Britain or Portugal. According to the scientific literature, these small shifts have a negligible effect on health – however unpleasant they may be. The real effects of the time change occur beyond three hours of change. For example if you go from Paris to New York by plane.
When will the end of the time change take place?
Three years ago, the European Parliament voted for the end of the time change as of 2021. And during a consultation, the French validated 84% of the end of the time change (with a preference for stay on summer time). But as we can see, we are in 2022, and we still have to change the time! So what happened?
The problem is that between the start of discussions on the subject and now, a series of burning news has come to the fore. We can cite COVID-19, the difficulties linked to Brexit… then the start of the outbreak of war in Ukraine which completely reshuffles the maps of energy supply in Europe.
In such a context, the abolition of the time change is not a priority. Especially since the measure can still, even in a limited way, allow essential energy savings when winter is coming and big questions remain around supply, in particular gas.
Therefore, work on the end of the time change has stalled for the time being. They can resume at any time, but there are strong reasons to believe that this issue will not be brought back to the table until at least the end of the war in Ukraine.