Sen. Matt Williams

State Sen. Matt Williams says Nebraska lawmakers have enough to deal with without addressing a ban on daylight saving time. 

This weekend, we will experience the annual “fall back” time change when we move our clocks back one hour and transition from daylight saving time to standard time.

While many people openly voice their opinions about the time change, few may know when and why we change our clocks in the first place.

George Hudson, an entomologist from New Zealand, is credited with inventing daylight saving time in 1895. But it would be several years before the idea caught on. In 1908, Port Arthur, Ontario, Canada, became the first city to adopt the time change officially.

Part of the thought behind the time change came from Hudson’s love of collecting insects and playing golf, and his desire for more daylight hours in the summer. However, the selling feature to get the rest of the world to buy into the concept was the amount of energy that could be saved.

Germany, Austria and Hungary all got on board with the plan in 1916 to save coal amid World War I. It did not take long for the rest of the world to follow suit. The United States adopted daylight saving time in 1918. When the war ended in 1918, most nations abandoned the time change, except for Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Ireland and the U.S.

In 1967, Arizona opted out of daylight saving time. Only the Navajo nation in that state continues to observe the time change. Hawaii also does not participate in daylight saving time, and never has. American Samoa, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands also do not observe the change in time.

In 2017, the Nebraska Legislature briefly considered a bill eliminating daylight saving time in the state. However, the bill never made it out of committee.

“We only have two states that don’t observe it, and 48 that do — so the problem for me is the inconsistency it would create especially with our neighboring states,” said state Sen. Matt Williams of Gothenburg. “With all the issues we are faced with, I don’t see this one having enough traction to really come up for debate.”

Though people are encouraged to set your clocks back one hour before going to bed Saturday night, the time change officially goes into effect at 2 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 3.

Contact Ellen Mortensen at ellen@gothenburgleader.com or call 308.536.6499