Every year, from March to the end of October, daylight saving time is implemented in Israel, by adjusting the time one hour forward, providing an extra hour of light during working hours. While in Europe daylight saving time is 211 days a year, and in the United States 239 days a year, in Israel daylight saving time is 182 days on average (the exact dates change from year to year).
Here are some reasons and benefits for switching to daylight saving time:
Energy saving – Adding daylight to the day in the afternoon reduces the use of industrial lighting. This includes savings in street lighting and public facilities, which leads to improved energy efficiency and economic savings for the authority.
Tourism – Foreign and domestic tourism are a means of growth for the local economy. Extra hours of light brings more tourists to public facilities, beaches and swimming pools, restaurants and malls, which provides a boost to the local economy.
Leisure culture – Adding an hour of light each day contributes to improving the quality of life and well-being of the individual, encouraging more family and community leisure time. Daylight saving time allows for a better family life, because upon returning from work, there is still light outside, so parents can go out for an activity with their children. The residents also participate more in recreation and leisure activities in public spaces, which on the one hand helps the local businesses and the economy, and on the other hand requires the local authority to address the need for leisure and entertainment activities in public spaces.
Transport – Adjusting the clock to correspond with European countries helps to increase road safety and improves energy savings. Daylight saving time is also important in the fight against road accidents, because it is always preferable to travel during daylight.
Employee output – Organizations report an increase in employee output during the months of daylight saving time compared to a decrease in winter, as there is a direct link between daylight hours and sunshine and the influence they have on the mood, activity level and efficiency of employees.
It is important to note that these advantages involve parameters which are non-quantifiable and there is no measurable benefit, and therefore some argue that where there are benefits of daylight saving time, there are also disadvantages due to the dark early-morning hours.
The local authorities in Israel are the ones who implement government policy, with the transition between the clocks being one of the parameters that affect the local authorities and require them to prepare accordingly.
The responsibilities of the local authority with regards to daylight saving time include:
• Changing and adjusting lighting in streets and public areas
• Coordinating with the electricity company to check reserves and ensure a steady supply of electricity in the city.
• Checking and adjusting work schedules, with an emphasis on city-improvement employees as well as cleaning and maintenance employees, who work in outdoor conditions.
• Expansion of leisure activities for residents
• Emphasis on road safety during the period of switching between clocks.
• Adjusting hours of operation in religious institutions such as kindergartens, synagogues, mikvahs, etc.
It is important to note that advanced technologies and innovative developments of systems that benefit local authorities in Israel, help increase energy efficiency, maintain safety and public order, improve resident services and offer optimal control of lighting and other systems in the city whilst maintaining flexibility and the ability to adapt according to demand, and without being obligated to correspond to any particular time zone. At the MiC Innovation Center, you can discover more about smart lighting and energy systems, management of commercial buildings, solutions in the fields of transportation, parking, cyber security and cameras, garbage and water, and a variety of innovations that enable savings and increase efficiency, that do not depend on changing the clock and make a significant contribution to the city in many fields.