Springing Forward

Trent Ernst


Did you remember to spring forward on Sunday? Did you then wind up at work/church/wherever you had to be an hour early?

I managed to convince my wife to show up to work an hour early the first year we live in Tumbler Ridge, but only the once.

Tumbler Ridge, and the rest of the Peace Region feels like the odd duck out when it comes to Daylight Saving Time, but, as you scratch past the surface, this whole DST thing is far more complicated than it appears.

Everywhere in Canada celebrates DST, with the exception of the Saskatchewan, the BC Peace and the East Kootenay. So Fernie, Cranbrook Golden and Invermere are do not observe DST, either.

Which is odd, because, officially, whether a province observes DST is a provincial decision. So why are there these regions that don’t, when the province does, and places that do when the province doesn’t?

Let’s go back to Saskatchewan. Saskatchewan is geographically within the Mountain Standard Time zone, but, because the word “mountain” cannot be used to describe anyplace in Saskatchewan, the province decided to go with the central time zone.

This means that clocks in most of the province match clocks in Winnipeg during the winter and Calgary and Edmonton during the summer.

However, the city of Lloydminster gets a special exemption.

Lloydminster and the immediately surrounding region in Saskatchewan observe Mountain Time year-round, with officially sanctioned seasonal daylight saving time (which in the summer, puts it in sync with the rest of Saskatchewan). This is to keep clocks on the Saskatchewan side in sync with those on the Alberta side;.

Confused yet? It gets better. On the other side of the province, the small, remote towns of Denare Beach and Creighton unofficially observe Central Daylight Time during the summer, thereby keeping the same time as larger neighboring Manitoba communities.

Coming back to BC, did you know that the city of Creston, which is in the East Kootenay, observes DST year round, unlike any other community in the East Kootenay.

Even better, the town of Creston observes Mountain Standard Time year round.

Considering that Calgary is the nearest major city to Creston, that makes some sort of sense, except for the fact that as soon as you leave town in summer, you have to change your clocks.

Which leads us to the whole “Daylight Saving Time is stupid” argument. Heck, most people don’t even say it right, calling it “Daylight SavingS Time,” which is wrong.

Of Canada’s ten provinces and three territories, four provinces and one territory have exceptions to their DST rules.

In the USA, wherein most of our DST headaches originate, there are up to thirty bills introduced to do away with DST each and every year.

Then again, doing away with DST would cause its own problems. If the state of Kentucky were to adopt Standard Time year-round, which was proposed this year, and the state of Tennessee, which is proposing to adopt DST year round, that would mean that two locations less then five minute’s drive apart would be separated by a two hour time difference.

Russia did away with DST in 2011, but there’s already a proposal to reinstate it, because Russians aren’t happy waking up in the dark.

It’s not a problem that is easily solved, but I for one am glad that, while most of the rest of the county is trying to remember if they are supposed to spring backwards or forward, I can just sleep that extra hour away.

We got a note from FWE asking if we could clarify that Teck has identified rural communities in BC, like Tumbler Ridge, as areas of opportunities for female entrepreneurs (as written about two weeks ago). The grant is available across the province, and not solely for women in Tumbler Ridge.