Light campaign urges clock change

Climate change campaigners are calling on the Government to cut carbon emissions by changing clocks to provide an extra hour of daylight in the evenings.

The Lighter Later campaign wants the UK to swap from being on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) in the winter and GMT+1 in the summer to GMT+1 in the winter and GMT+2 in spring and summer.

Culture secretary Ben Bradshaw said the change would be "good for business, good for tourism, good for the environment, improve safety and increase people's sense of well-being".

But the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) said it would continue to listen to views and evidence put to it, but that the proposals wouldn't currently be introduced.

The campaign claims that the change would save almost half a million tonnes of CO2 each year, which was equivalent to taking 185,000 cars off the road permanently.

In addition, it could save more than 100 fatalities on the nation's roads each year, consumers and businesses would use less energy, thus saving money, and 60,000 to 80,000 jobs would be created through increased leisure and tourism, bringing an extra £2.5-3.5 billion into the economy each year.

The organisation plans to deliver a letter to the newly elected Prime Minister asking for a commitment to a three-year trial by the time the clocks change again in October.

In addition to receiving backing from the culture secretary, the move is also reported to have the support of the Conservatives' tourism spokesman, Tobias Ellwood.

But some opponents of the move argue it would bring even darker mornings for people in Scotland, where the days are already shorter in winter.

As a result, it would create greater danger for children going to school and lead to an increase in road accidents, it is claimed.

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