An open letter to the Governors and Premiers of the Western North American US states and Canadian Provinces

As Western Governors and Premiers, you should be aware that all Americans and Canadians who live west of the Continental Divide are at a great disadvantage time wise than their fellow citizens who reside in more easterly time zones. Those of us who reside in the Pacific Time Zone can never hope to compete economically with our eastern cousins as long as we are separated by three full hours in a business day. The West is at a great disadvantage not only economically but politically and socially because of the time differential.

Working across time zones in North America

Other countries have and are making modifications in their time zones in order to increase economic and social communications between their citizens. China which is slightly wider than the contiguous USA has concluded that the entire country should operate on a single time zone; India which technically covers two time zones has reduced them to a single time zone and Russia recently joined the growing number of countries that have either consolidated their time zones or otherwise adjusted the clock to optimize daylight.

Tens of millions of sports fans are greatly inconvenienced in the both the west and the east when watching live sports events broadcast from the eastern and western time zones. For example, to try and accommodate the west when broadcasting major national events from the east, the event must occur an hour later than it normally would. Thus folks in the east stay up late watching the event on TV and arrive an hour short of sleep at work the next morning while folks in the west leave work early to avoid the peak of the commute and rush home in the hopes of catching at least the last half of the event

The three hour time difference between the Eastern and Pacific time zones in the USA and Canada creates an even more serious problem for our respective democratically elected governments. Because of the much higher proportion of the population in both countries that live in the Eastern Time Zone, federal elections are often decided long before the polls even close in the west.

Western alienation has come about as a result of the lack of attention paid to the west by Ottawa and Washington, respectively. There are two factors that contribute to our respective federal capitals’ relative historic lack of attention to the western portions of their countries– the first being distance and the second being time. We cannot do anything about the distance but we can improve the time factor and we can do this without any cost to the taxpayer or anyone for that matter! All we have to do is eliminate one time zone and there are several ways that this can be done, the simplest of which is to simply amalgamate the Mountain and Pacific Time Zones into a single Western Time Zone.

I have included a link to my website; www.newtimezones.com . I respectfully suggest you have your research staff do a review of my site and brief you on the merits of this recommendation,

Yours truly,

Raymond A Demarchi
Retired British Columbia Chief of Wildlife

 

If you want to send this letter to the State Governors and Western Premiers, please copy this and paste it into an email and send it to (cut and paste into your To: field in your email):

hpropst@westgov.org; premier@gov.bc.ca; premier@gov.ab.ca; premier@gov.yk.ca

More on Samoa’s bold time zone move

On Fareed Zakaria’s CNN program Global Public Square (GPS June 26, 2011), Mr. Zakaria stated, “There’s much speculation about a lost decade for the United States economy. All Samoa had to do to rev up its economy is lose a day. I wish we had that option.”

Well, as a matter of fact Canada and the US do have that option! As my Website, www.newtimezones.com explains, we could greatly increase our productivity by significantly increasing the amount of time that office workers on the East and West coasts have to communicate during any eight hour period directly simply by reducing the number of time zones shared by our two countries by one zone.

My Website explains the two basic ways that this could be done and the reasons why it should be done to restore our ailing economies. The simplest way would be to amalgamate the Mountain and Pacific Time zones While a more complicated means would be to delay each time zones from east to west by one half hour thus eliminating the Pacific Time Zone. Such a move would not cost the taxpayers anything and would do much to synchronize time across both Canada and the USA.

One giant leap for tiny Samoa

Change time zone, change day and change year all in one go.

One small step for North America,  one giant leap for Samoa.

Samoa Islands

Samoa changes time zone

Tiny Samoa in the South Pacific is going to make the bold move of changing from the eastern half of the globe to the western half at midnight December 30th, 2011.

This will separate Samoa (population 182,265) from American Samoa and place it in the same time zone as New Zealand and Australia where it was before it changed to join the Americas since July 4th, 1982.

The reason  given then was so that Samoa could enjoy increased commerce with the Americas , whereas now the reason is to increase commerce with New Zealand and Australia by increasing the amount of time during the day that offices in the respective areas are open for business.

Check out this brilliant BBC explanation of world time zones

 

 

Time Zones and the NHL Stanley Cup

Time Zone Differences Take Their Toll on Stanley Cup Finalists.

Time zones do matter and especially when it comes to the NHL playoffs.   Simliar to last year’s playoff between the Vancouver Canucks and the Boston Bruins, this year the  Stanley cup final is being played out over a  greater distance between competing cities than any previous years in recent history with  New Jersey and Los Angeles spanning  2770 miles (4460 kms) and three time zones.

And although the Kings won game one in overtime on a lucky breakaway goal, it appeared that they were struggling to maintain their momentum by the third period.

After the first game win of 3-2 , in his post game interview, LA Kings’ coach Darryl Sutter said, ” We did a good job in the first period based on New Jersey, the way they’ve played in first periods in the playoffs. We knew that was going to be a challenge for us. With the travel, our guys felt sluggish yesterday.”  Of course, it was not just the travel but the jet lag associated with that travel after crossing three time zones to reach New Jersey that Coach Sutter was speaking about. And after today’s game (Saturday, June 2nd) the roles will be reversed and it will be the New Jersey Devil’s turn to suffer the effects of jet lag.

It is difficult to say which team is the most affected by the time differential. The jury is still out as to whether it is harder to adjust to time zone changes when travelling from east to west or from west to east. Suffice it to say, it depends largely on the person and how prepared both mentally and physically he or she may be for the time change.

While there is no objective data  on how the Devils or the Kings  are handling the change in between their respective time zones, the Vancouver Canucks have employed modern science to condition their team into preparing for a playoff with a team located three time zones to the east.  They have employed the services of a sleep consultant, Fatigue Science which uses a system it developed to monitor the sleeping habits of athletes who travel great distances. Researchers then run the results through scheduling software and advise the Canucks on everything from travel and practice schedules to lifestyle choices.

“Simply put, lack of sleep impacts the performance of professional athletes by slowing player reactions times during games, often making the difference between winning and losing,” Fatigue Science said in a statement.  With science at their disposal, it now seems that some teams, including the Vancouver Canucks in both the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons  turned a 40-year history of the worst travel schedule in the National Hockey League into a competitive advantage even though this year, they lost in the semi finals to Los Angeles, a team in their own time zone that may be discretely using the same science.


Millions of hours of work time lost.

NHL Boston and Vancouver fans affected by the three hour time differential in Stanley Cup playoffs.

Stanley Cup

The Prize!

The three hour time zone differential between the east and west coasts of North America was never made more apparent than to the fans watching the 2010-11 Stanley cup finals between the Boston Bruins and the Vancouver Canucks.

This year’s Stanley cup final is being played out over a greater distance than any in recent history with Vancouver and Boston spanning nearly 2500 miles (4000 kms) and three time zones with a significant impact on productive work losses.

Some Vancouver fans say they’ve adjusted their work schedules, taking an extra hour off of work to get home in time for the games, all of which were set for 8:00 pm EDT and 5:00 PM PDT. But is this true also of Boston Bruin fans who are literally losing sleep over the playoffs?

While in the west, it is still early in the evening when the games are finished, in the east it is approaching midnight by the time most fans get home from the games.

A simple reduction of one time zone would remove the loss of an hour’s work for millions of hockey fans in the afternoons in the west and the mornings in the east, another example of how reducing our time zones by one zone would benefit the economy of both the US and Canada.