A woman rides her bicycle toward Broekzijdse Molen windmill as the sun sets between the villages of Abcoude and Driemond, near Amsterdam, Netherlands, Saturday Oct. 29, 2011.

Europe deliberates if it should keep daylight saving time

To save on energy this winter, European nations are trying to decide if it's time to get rid of daylight saving time. But if they make different decisions, it could make keeping track of time across the continent quite chaotic.

The World

A woman rides her bicycle toward Broekzijdse Molen windmill as the sun sets between the villages of Abcoude and Driemond, near Amsterdam, Netherlands, Oct. 29, 2011. The Dutch will switch back from daylight saving time in the night of Saturday Oct. 29 to Sunday Oct. 30.

Peter Dejong/AP/File photo

Europe is looking for any way to save energy this winter, with the war in Ukraine disrupting supplies across the continent.

One idea has been to make daylight saving time permanent. That would require countries not to "fall back" in November. Keeping the afternoon longer would mean that people will also wait longer to turn on their lights in the evening, which would save on electricity.

But ending the semi-annual clock change is trickier than it seems, in part because, while some studies suggest that energy is saved by sticking to the summer schedule, the flip side is that, depending on when people wake up, they could just be turning the lights on earlier in the morning.

In either case, the European Union’s 27 member states are each free to decide their own way forward. And if they all choose differently, keeping track of time in Europe could become chaotic.

Not as dramatic, though, as this daylight saving spoof movie trailer!

Related: Why sleep experts say it’s time to ditch daylight saving time

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