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Daylight Saving Time

Published on November 28, 2007

On the last Sunday of March, France and many other countries “spring forward” by setting their clocks, watches and alarms one hour ahead, for a period of seven months.

"Time change" was reestablished in France in 1976. Of British origin, the idea of putting the official time one hour forward during the summer was instituted in France for the first time in 1916. Eliminated after the Second World War, it was then reinstated in 1976, following the first oil crisis in 1973. It was justified as a way of economizing energy since the Government sought an annual saving equivalent to 300,000 tons of oil.

Throughout the years, the system has been adopted by 108 countries worldwide with some variations throughout Europe. In December 2000, European Union authorities decided to continue with the system indefinitely. Daylight saving time (DST) comes into effect on the last Sunday of March and ends the last Sunday of October.

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