Time zones

I know time zones aren’t totally geographically drawn and If you ask me, it’d be totally stupid to disregard political, administrative and economic characteristics (e.g. it would be idiotic to separate a country as small as Switzerland into two time zones just because westernmost parts of the country should geographically be GMT). However, current time zone divisions are extremely stupid in some cases. Lemme just to make a short analysis (yeah, when time zones are considered, this is short).

North America
A few US states and Canadian provinces are divided into two time zones where that’s totally unnecessary – only Ontario, Quebec, Canadian territories (expect Yukon which is in only one time zone 🙂 ) and Alaska are geographically wide enough to be divided into several time zones. I guess Texas is big enough to be in two time zones, but I’d put the whole state in Central Time Zone. True, Canadian territories are also quite wide, but, like Alaska, they’re so north that there’s no need for many time zones. Current time division of Canadian territories is fine. Now, what is also stupid is some part of a state or province/territory observing DST and some not. For example, Arizona and Quebec (if you ask me, whole Arizona should abolish DST since most of the state doesn’t observe it and the state is real south while whole Quebec should observe DST ’cause most of the province does) Well, the thing that makes the most sense to me is making a local time zone for Quebec (GMT-4:30). However, it’s logical to have (most of) Quebec in sync with the most populous parts of both Canada and the US, so the current time zone division should be fine. Ontario, another quite “wide” province, should either be divided into two time zones more “fairly” (a lot more province territory should be Central Time) or the province should be Eastern Time altogether (if Thunder Bay, which is a lot more to the west than Chicago, is Eastern Time, what’s the point of having a few minor settlements in the Central Time Zone?!). Suffice it to say, I’m for (a more fair) time division of Ontario. Oh, there is Newfoundland with its GMT-3:30. Now why the fuck isn’t it in the same time zone with (most of) Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island?! Even more stupid is the division of Labrador – most of the region is GMT-4, but the southestearn tip is GMT-3:30. Basically, the GMT-3:30 time zone should be abolished altogether and the province Newfoundland and Labrador should totally be placed in GMT-4:00.
Now, let’s talk about Greenland. Surely it’s not populated much, but its inhabitants must be taken into account. Yeah, it is the biggest island on the planet and, geographically looking, it should be divided into several time zones. However, since it’s not populated much, a single time zone should be used to make life of the Greenland inhabitants easier. Basically, I’d abolish all time zones, but GMT-3.

Okay, France, Monaco, Andorra, Spain and Benelux (i.e. the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg) have no place doing in CET (GMT+1). They say the economy keeps them in CET. Pure bull shit – first of all, there are the UK, Ireland and Portugal in GMT and they’re all developed countries; secondly, if all the mentioned countries switched to GMT, well each country would have six additional business partners (there’d still be plenty of developed countries in CET – e.g. Switzerland and Germany). So the economic reason is gone with the wind. In addition, if they’d switch to GMT (where they belong), the quality of life (mostly human and their pets’ since outdoor animals don’t care about time zones anyway) would improve ’cause GMT is natural for most parts of those countries (an exception is e.g. easternmost France) and thus the life would be healthier.

It is totally stupid for a country as vast as China (especially in width) to be in a single time zone. I mean what, does it like dawn at 10 AM in Urumqi just because whole China “must” be in a single time zone and Beijing (and surrounding places) is the privileged city?!

At first I thought things are pretty good in Australia, but come to think about it time zones of Australia are kinda messed up. First of all, all of Queensland should introduce DST, so the state is in sync with NSW, ACT, Victoria and Tasmania. Why the whole state? It’d be even more stupid if the state was (unnecessarily) divided into two time zones. The Northern Territory and South Australia should both use GMT+9. The difference with the most populous parts of Australia might be longer (i.e. 1 hour instead of 30 minutes), but it would be easier to convert local time to other times (including Eastern Australian Time). Moreover, such division would be more logical – time in Australia would be GMT+8, GMT+9 and GMT+10 (i.e. the difference of each time zone would be 1 hour – 1 hour ahead of Perth and 1 hour behind of Sydney when DST is off). Furthermore, DST in South Australia should be abolished to align the times of the Northern Territory (Northern Territory and South Australia would be one time zone) and Western Australia (the difference between West Australia and its eastern neighbours would always be an hour). Other anomalies should also be fixed. Basically, in my opinion, mainland Australia should be divided like this – Western Time (GMT+8) should include Western Australia; Central Time (GMT+9) should include Northern Territory and South Australia; and Eastern Time (GMT+10) / DST (GMT+11) should include Queensland, NSW, ACT, Victoria and Tasmania.
Why DST in Eastern Time and not in Western and Central? Simple: most of the Eastern Time Zone already applies DST – it is quite easier only for one state (i.e. Queensland) to adapt than for 4 of them (i.e. NSW, ACT, Victoria and Tasmania). Likewise, it’s quite easier for South Australia to adapt to the Northern Territory and Western Australia. Furthermore, the immense heat of central Australia is easier to withstand during night, so it makes sense that central parts of Australia have less daylight during most of human activity. Even northernmost South Australia is pretty much central Australia. Moreover, to maintain time sync of South Australia and Northern Territory, South Australia is the one that should abolish DST.

A little more about DST now. DST observance is totally up to a country/territory. It seems useful to me only in temperate latitudes. Just be coherent with DST – let’s take the mentioned Arizona as an example. I think the whole state should abolish DST. That’s my opinion. For all I care, the whole state can observe DST, but it’s totally stupid to have the state (a single administrative entity) divided. Just like Australian time zones should be in DST sync. Same shit is in Canada where some parts of a province/territory observe DST and some don’t. I mean such things are unbelievable to me – someone close to you (a relative or a friend; maybe even best bud) lives just a few metres away in the same province (US states and Canadian provinces/territories are equal to European countries) and you have to adjust your clock for every bloody visit…
Furthermore, I think DST applying should be aligned on each hemisphere respectively (i.e. the DST beginning and ending should be on the same date in North America and Euroasia on one side and in South America, Africa and Oceania on the other).

I agree that local population’s opinion is the most important when dividing areas in time zones, but some basic logic ought to be used.

Speaking of time:
Posted on March 6th, 2012 at 17:05 GMT
Use Time Zone Converter to quickly convert the time


6 thoughts on “Time zones

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