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EU committee votes to scrap biannual clock change by 2021

Clocks go forward this year on Sunday 31 March.

Time change - Lambertikirche in Oldenburg Source: DPA/PA Images

SEASONAL CLOCK CHANGES should be scrapped by 2021, a committee of MEPs decided today. 

The European Parliament’s Transport and Tourism Committee voted to end the twice-annual practice of changing the clocks and EU states, like Ireland, must now decide which time – summer or winter – they will stick to after a report was backed by 23 votes to 11. 

Ireland South MEP Deirdre Clune confirmed today’s decision and said that member states should notify the European Commission of their choice by April 2020.

Consultation conducted by the Commission last year found that over 80% of people favoured abolishing seasonal clock changes, according to Clune. 

Last year, 1,000 people were asked on behalf of TheJournal.ie and Claire Byrne Live/Amárach Research if Ireland should stop the ritual of changing clocks twice a year with 67% of people saying ‘Yes’. 

“There are many benefits to ending the process of changing the clocks each year such as improved outcomes for road safety and economic benefits,” Clune said today. “In addition brighter evenings in winter would have a positive benefit for public health”. 

Summertime arrangements in the EU require clocks to be changed twice per year to cater for the changing patterns of daylight and to take advantage of the available daylight in a given period.

Clocks go forward this year on Sunday 31 March. 

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