Inspire

This Map Shows How The World Does Daylight Savings, And Maybe Queensland Is Right?

There are two age-old debates between New South Wales and Queensland. First there’s the State of Origin (where NSW has been dominant the last two years, so let’s put that aside). Then there’s the Great Daylight-Saving-Time Debate. NSW enjoys the shift of daylight hours to more normal times, where Queensland does not observe the practice.

We at AWOL have just surfaced a map which charts the observance of daylight saving time around the world and, by the looks of it, NSW may just be in the minority here. The horror!

You can see the map in full below (or a larger version here). In the southern hemisphere, NSW, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT are only joined by New Zealand, Chile, Paraguay and some of the Pacific Island countries, like Fiji. That is to say, we’re keeping pretty lonely company.

Image: TimeZonesBoy (own work, CC BY-SA 3.0)

Daylight saving time (DST) map legend:

  • Northern Hemisphere: Observes DST
  • Southern Hemisphere: Observes DST
  • Never observed daylight saving time (dark grey)
  • Once did, but no longer observes DST (light grey)

Daylight saving time appears to be a more popular concept in the northern hemisphere though, with pretty much all of Europe, and North America following the shifted times – but huge countries like China, India, Russia and most of northern Africa having abandoned daylight savings.

Pretty telling is how many countries once used daylight saving time and abandoned it – depicted in light grey on the map.

Image: Troy Wegman / Shutterstock

While in NSW the shift in time seems to pass pretty seamlessly and means our waking lives are more squarely centred on the hours of daylight we have, turns out the impassioned resistance to daylight savings does have a few legitimate concerns. Those who rise early – such as farmers – dislike the practice because it moves their daytime away from their working hours (no because cows can’t cope). Some parents also dislike the “artificial” morning darkness their kids might have to set off to school in. Some studies even link increased tiredness – and resultant accidents such as car crashes – to the body’s ability to adapt to a different time schedule.

There will always be arguments for and against contentious issues such as this though and, for now, we in NSW are content to enjoy our summer days and long, sunny afternoons.

If you like this map, we have more where that came from! Check out this map of speed limits around the world, which languages are easiest to learn, or national animals and their conservation status.

(Lead image: TimeZonesBoy (own work, CC BY-SA 3.0))