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Eastern European Summer Time

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Eastern European Summer Time (EEST) is one of the names of UTC+3 time zone, 3 hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time. It is used as a summer daylight saving time in some European and Middle Eastern countries, which makes it the same as Arabia Standard Time, East Africa Time and Moscow Time. During the winter periods, Eastern European Time (UTC+2) is used.

Since 1996 European Summer Time has been observed from the last Sunday in March to the last Sunday in October; previously the rules were not uniform across the European Union.[1]

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Once a year in the spring, countries all over the world put their clocks forward one hour in order to “save daylight”. Countless millions of people lose an hour’s sleep, and it’s all the fault of one man: Kaiser Wilhelm II, he of the extraordinary facial hair. Well, it’s true that the Germans were the first to introduce daylight savings time, on 30th April 1916 as part of the war effort. And not just Germany: Austria-Hungary did the same. And then Britain and France thought that it was such a great idea, that they immediately followed suit. Why did they do this? It was to save fuel. The logic was that because people would go to bed an hour earlier, they wouldn’t need so much artificial light in the evenings, thus saving oil. But although the Germans and Austro-Hungarians were the first to actually implement the idea, they didn’t come up with it. It was first suggested in 1895 by a Brit living in New Zealand called George Vernon Hudson. And even he was inspired by Benjamin Franklin, who, over a century previously, had noted that a lot of people were wasting a lot of precious fuel on artificial light. It would help, he said, if people got up earlier in the morning and went to bed earlier in the evening. So to help save fuel in the First World War, several European countries actually did it. And then, after the war, most of them dropped it again, because it had been very unpopular. Most. Well, half. Great Britain kept daylight savings time. France did eventually drop it, after numerous protests from farmers, in 1922. And re-introduced it in 1923. Various places experimented with the idea. In the US and Canada, this was done on a local level, which could be really confusing: there were even some cases of cities where some neighbourhoods had daylight savings time, and some didn’t. Not until the second half of the 20th century did daylight savings become a regular thing in a large number of countries. Mostly, it was a response to the oil crisis of the 1970s — remember, the original idea was to save fuel. But even now that the oil crisis is over — and in any case we are using more renewable energy — we still have daylight savings time. And increasing numbers of people are asking the question: “Why?” Well, it may be because these days we are increasingly concerned about conserving energy. The problem is that there doesn’t seem to be very much evidence to show that daylight savings time actually saves energy. As far back as 1916, the first year this was tried, experts were saying if there was an effect, it was negligible. In fact, when daylight savings time was introduced to Indiana in 2006, energy consumption rose by 1% — possibly because people were running their air-conditioners for longer. And a year previously, the German government had confirmed that daylight savings time had almost no effect on energy consumption. Pretty much nobody these days thinks that changing the clocks is a good idea. According to one quote doing the rounds of the internet at the moment, an unnamed Native American is supposed to have said: “Only a white man would cut the top off his blanket, sew it to the bottom, and think that he has a longer blanket.” But until governments can be persuaded to stop messing with our clocks twice a year, we’re stuck with it. The German government, while conceding that daylight savings time is basically pointless, isn’t prepared to change the status quo without the rest of the EU. And so, for now at least, if you live in the EU, you need to know that the clocks go forward one hour on the last Sunday in March, and back again on the last Sunday in October. For absolutely no reason. Thanks for watching. If you’d like to send me a postcard, here’s the address. And don’t forget to visit my website and follow me on Twitter and Facebook. Also, if you’d like access to special bonus content and help with the costs of running this channel, please consider making a small monthly donation on Patreon.


The following countries and territories use Eastern European Summer Time during the summer:

In one year 1991 EEST was used also in Moscow and Samara time zones of Russia. Egypt has previously used EEST from 1957–2010 and 2014–2015. Turkey, has previously used EEST from 1970-1978 EEST, Moscow Summer Time from 1979–1983, and EEST from 1985-2016.

Colour Legal time vs local mean time
1 h ± 30 m behind
0 h ± 30 m
1 h ± 30 m ahead
2 h ± 30 m ahead
3 h ± 30 m ahead
European summer
European summer

See also


  1. ^ Joseph Myers (2009-07-17). "History of legal time in Britain". Retrieved 2009-10-11.
  2. ^ Ukraine to return to standard time on Oct. 30 (updated), Kyiv Post (October 18, 2011)
This page was last edited on 1 January 2019, at 17:42
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