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Mexican Senate votes to eliminate daylight saving time

Oct. 27 (UPI) -- Mexico's Senate has voted to do away with daylight saving time, except in northern areas that border the United States. Mexico has made seasonal changes for daylight saving time ever since it was adopted in 1996.

The Senate voted 56-29 Wednesday in favor of dropping the time change with 12 abstentions.

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"This new law seeks to guarantee the human right to health and increase safety in the mornings, procure the well-being and productivity of the population and contribute to saving electric energy," the Senate said in a tweet.

If President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador signs the bill, which he is expected to do, the change will become law.

Daylight saving has long been the subject of protracted debate, with advocates arguing the extra hour of afternoon daylight is good for business while detractors argue the time changes disrupt natural sleep cycles and make commutes more dangerous on darker mornings.

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The seasonal time change was adopted by the United States during World War I to increase war productivity. The introduction of daylight savings time was accompanied by a colorful propaganda campaign by the United States government.

A poster celebrating the passage of daylight saving time in the United States. Photo courtesy Library of Congress

The European Union introduced standardized daylight savings changes in 1980, to help homogenize the European market. In 2019 EU legislators voted to scrap the mandatory daylight savings regulation, allowing each individual nation to decide how to set their clocks. The issue was largely relegated to the back burner as COVID-19 became the most pressing issue facing the EU

While most U.S. states use daylight savings time there are exceptions, including Arizona and Hawaii. However, the Navajo Nation does use daylight savings on their land within Arizona.

RELATED EU readies survey on whether to abolish daylight savings time

The U.S. Senate voted by unanimous consent to get rid of the biannual time changes and make daylight savings time the permanent standard but the legislation has become bogged down in congress.

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