With the days getting longer, the flowers starting to bloom — at least in some parts of the province — and Major League Baseball spring training already underway, it can only mean one thing.
Daylight Saving Time is here, or at least it will be in a few hours.
On Sunday (March 14) at 2 a.m., the clocks will spring ahead one hour, as British Columbia switches from Pacific Standard Time to Pacific Daylight Saving Time.
Changing the clocks — one hour ahead in the spring and back an hour in the fall — has been a bi-annual routine for decades in British Columbia.
But it’s also a routine that many in B.C. want to end.
A provincial government survey commissioned a few years ago, saw roughly 225,000 people across the province vote in favour of a permanent move to daylight time, effectively ending the practice of bi-annual time changes.
Following the survey, the provincial government introduced legislation to eliminate seasonal time changes. Fast-forward to March 2021, and the practice still remains.
Premier John Horgan has repeatedly — even as recently as Friday — said B.C. will only abandon the practice only when Washington, Oregon and California make the move too.
Both Washington and Oregon have passed legislation to the ditch time change. Similar legislation has been proposed in California but has not yet passed.
Other provinces are also considering switching to Daylight Saving Time, including Alberta and Ontario, but only if neighbouring provinces or U.S. states join them.
There is one place in North America, however, that recently scrapped the practice of bi-annual time change.
Yukon did away with it in 2020, opting to remain in Pacific Daylight Saving Time year-round.
The change means it’s the same time in Whitehorse and Calgary during the fall and winter months — once Alberta switches to Mountain Standard Time in November.
As a result, Yukon officials rearranged flight schedules and worked with technology companies that are responsible for things such as a clock in a vehicle running on GPS.
Andrew Smith, a Yukon government analyst who worked with a range of companies and organizations to implement the change, says the territory’s work has shown it can be done with the right amount of planning and will be easier for others who follow.
“People who we have worked with in North America and around the world have also now gone through this with us, so it’s going be a lot easier for them to do implementation stuff,” said Smith. “It’ll be an easier exercise and fewer bumps in the road.”
For now, it seems only time will tell when British Columbians will no longer need to switch their clocks.