Daylight savings 2012 will begin on the second Sunday of March and end on the first Sunday of November. In March, clocks are moved forward one hour from 2am standard time to 3am daylight savings time (or DST), and in November, clocks are moved back one hour from 2am DST to 1am standard time. The phrase “spring forward, fall back” is a helpful reminder of these time changes.
The reason for daylight savings 2012, like all daylight savings changes, is to increase the period of light during the afternoon while decreasing the hours of daylight in the mornings. This is why in 2012 clocks will be moved forward an hour in the beginning of spring and set backward an hour during fall. The practice of DST has its benefits and problems. Adding light to the afternoon benefits afterwork activities and also has an economic benefit to retailers that prosper during daylight hours. However, DST can be problematic for timekeeping, travel and sleep cycles.
DST was first introduced in 1895 by George Vernon Hudson, a New Zealand entomologist. William Willett independently came up with the idea of DST in 1905. As an avid golfer, Willett disliked how his afternoon golf round was cut short by early days. During 1916, Germany and its allies in WWI were the first countries to adopt daylight savings time to ensure consistent railroad times and limit coal usage.
Interestingly, not all countries will participate in the daylight savings 2012 time changes. About 70 countries worldwide participate in daylight savings, while some major countries like China will not participate in daylight savings in 2012.