Daylight saving time, not saving as much energy as it used to

The daylight saving time practice in Mexico has been reducing its impact on energy conservation efforts since 2013
Daylight saving time, not saving as much energy as it used to
Noé Cruz Serrano
Mexico City
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The benefits of the daylight saving time (DST) in Mexico's economy and energy conservation efforts have decreased in the last five years.

Setting forward our clocks by one hour in April and then backwards one hour in October is increasingly reflecting less and less the goals pursued by the implementation of this measure.

According to estimates of the Electric Power Savings Trust Fund (FIDE), obtained from data of the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) and the assessment of the Electric Research Institute (IIE), the results in electric power conservation went from 1,244 GWh in 2013 to 885.7 GWh by the end of 2017, which means the savings in electric power have fallen by 29 percent.

Five years ago, the amount of electric power saved was equal to the demand required by 740,000 households for 12 months yet by the end of 2017, it was only equal to 571,000 households – considering an average consumption rate of 258 kWh every two months.

In economic terms, authorities from the Energy industry in Mexico estimated that the daylight saving time would save the country MXN$ 1.6 billion yet last year it only reached the MXN$ 1.3 billion* for household users.

Moreover, according to the information of the FIDE, CFE, and IIE, in 2013 the DTS saved 772,000 oil barrels, which prevented the emission of over 560,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide – one of the main gases behind the greenhouse effect – yet in 2017, it is estimated only the emission of 402,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide was prevented.

Figures include the savings estimated in Mexico's Northern border region, where daylight savings time is set to match that of the border region of the United States for practical reasons.

*1 kWh = MXN$ 1.4805


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