Daylight saving time could become permanent in Ontario
Ending daylight saving time would mean it would be light at night longer through the entire year. (The Canadian Press)
TORONTO -- Ontario could put an end to bi-annual clock changes and permanently adapt daylight saving time if a new private member's bill, which the government supports, passes.
On Wednesday, Ottawa West – Nepean MPP Jeremy Roberts tabled The Time Amendment Act, which would "clear the road for Ontario to end the bi-annual process of changing our clocks" and implement permanent daylight saving time.
The bill has already passed the second reading in legislature at Queen's Park.
If the bill passes it means it would remain lighter for longer in the evening throughout the entire year.
On the other hand though, the sun wouldn't rise in the Greater Toronto Area until nearly 9 a.m. around Christmas, meaning the commute to school and work for many would be in the dark.
The change would only come into effect if the state of New York and province of Quebec also follow suit.
"There are several studies that show that increased evening daylight actually gets people out shopping, so it helps our small businesses," Roberts told CTV News Toronto on Wednesday.
Roberts also said Ontarians are "tired of watching the sun set while they are still at work."
"Permanent daylight saving means people who work a standard day shift – and kids who go to school during the day – get more daylight at the end of the day, and it will make Ontario a safer and happier place."
He said that past proposals to end the time change have been met with resistance because of the "logistical difficulties" without Quebec and New York following suit.
"This bill addresses these issues by ensuring that the Attorney General has discretion in when they will implement this change," he said.
Daylight saving time for 2020, which began on March 8, will end in Ontario on Nov 1 at 2 a.m.
Why do we have Daylight Saving Time?
According to Patricia Lakin-Thomas, a professor at York University, the whole tradition started at the end of the 19th century when someone wanted to play golf later in the afternoon during the summer.
She said daylight saving time has come and gone throughout the years. She said it disappeared after the First World War, and returned during the Second World War.
She also said the "rumours" of saving energy are baseless.
"The energy saving never came about," she said. "It's a good question why we hold on to it, everybody is irritated by the switch."
Most Canadian provinces observe daylight saving time, but Saskatchewan decided to not follow the herd and uses only standard time year round.