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Majority of Germans wants to abolish daylight saving time

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Staff Writer |
daylight saving
Europe   More than half stated that they have difficulties falling asleep

Opposition in Germany against daylight saving time (DST) has never been higher, according to a Forsa poll for health insurance DAK.

Eighty percent of respondents voted against changing clocks twice a year, the highest result since the regular poll was started in 2013.

"Many people are suffering from the regular change", said DAK board member Andreas Storm. According to the poll, 79 percent feel tired or exhausted as a result of daylight saving time changes.

More than half stated that they have difficulties falling asleep or problems such as waking up during the night. Roughly every third respondent is also suffering from poor concentration or bad temper.

In an online poll conducted by the European Commission in August, 84 percent of respondents favored an abolishment of DST. German Chancellor Angela Merkel reacted supportively.

Never have so many Europeans taken part in an online poll", she said. A small majority voted for keeping summer time permanent. Germans were particularly active respondents to the EU poll. Out of 4.6 million responses, three million came from Germany.

Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, announced that the abolishment of DST across Europe would be stopped between winter and summer time in 2019. "The people want it, we will do it", Juncker said in German public television (ZDF). It was up to the member states to decide whether they want to have winter or summer time permanently, Juncker added.

Globally, many countries have introduced DST in order to save energy, particularly since the energy crisis of the 1970s. The practice was adapted in Germany in 1980. Recent studies have cast doubt on the effectiveness of the original aim of energy saving.

Slovakia stresses the need to apply a unified time regime to EU member states, at least among neighbouring countries in central and eastern Europe.

“From the point of view of the internal market, the most important thing is for countries not to decide individually (and differently) whether to keep to winter or summer time,” the Ministry stressed, as quoted by TASR.

The draft directive, as of now, allows the states to choose which time regime they will keep. This could lead, according to the Labour Ministry, to even bigger fragmentation of time zones within the EU.

Clocks in Europe will be put forward by one hour between Oct. 27 and 28.

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