Separating political hyperbole` from the daylight savings facts
In noting the comments recently made by the Member for Traeger, the Hon Robbie Katter, I thought it prudent to give your readers a wider view of the subject.
We in the city favour daylight savings, we also wholly agree with Mr Katter's wise words.
Mount Isa has 55 minutes of "daylight savings" built into its day, and with its summer heat, doesn't need any more.
So rather than Mount Isa's time being dictated by Brisbane and eastern standard time, it should be on a time zone of its own, one that is an hour behind Brisbane, or maybe half-an-hour centred say around a line north-south around Blackall/Barcaldine.
Queensland is a lot bigger in both north-south and east-west directions than most think, and this is why we in the south east agree with Mr Katter on this aspect.
Where we disagree is just because the 35,000 citizens of Mount Isa and other western towns and localities are so far west and have an hour of daylight savings built in is not a good reason to prevent the 3.5 million of us who live in the south east from being aligned with New South Wales, ACT, Victoria and Tasmania.
Daylight savings is not a "bank of daylight" where we "save light". It does not create a single extra second of light, nor does it fade curtains. All it does is realign how we use the light we have.
So why the problem? Because the politicians have made the timeline determination based not on a north-south line as we now see it should be but an east-west one; the QLD-NSW border.
Almost two decades ago, Griffith University did such modelling, and noted the economic losses to Qld of over $4 billion, and in so doing, also depriving the treasury of about $1billion in revenue from business turnover.
It really does not matter much which modelling is the more correct; they all paint a grim picture, especially now as we come to plan a roadmap out of the mess created by COVID-19.
What matters is that there is a huge cost to Queensland, and what is often not considered, also just as importantly, is to the northern part of NSW, where the NSW Cross-Border Commissioner noted it was an "ongoing matter of considerable concern". It's not just Coolangatta, look at Hebel in the far west.
So what can we as Queenslanders collectively all do about this ? First the political leaders have to stop leaning on this rubbish about governing for all of Queensland, and using daylight savings as the crutch. If the politicians of the south east speak for the folk of the north and the west, and the politicians of those regions also speak for you, the reader, who then speaks for the 3.5 million Queenslanders who live in the south east and are so negatively affected? Fourteen states in the US have split time zones, as do many other places around the world.
The Lord Mayor of Brisbane has made it clear Brisbane will have daylight savings by the time we host the 2032 Olympics.
So how can you help? As a local to Robbie Katter, you might have signed the petition that he has circulated as a Member of the House but now that you are in possession of a lot more knowledge, you can also sign the petition I have launched via the Speaker of the House.
And now when asked, you can acknowledge the costs and the issues caused by this in the south east, and I've explained all this with not a single reference to the lifestyle issues so often promulgated in support of daylight savings.
And if asked, you can suggest a time zone that reflects the real needs of the locality you live in, and not have Brisbane's time zone foisted upon you.
And you can tell your politicians to listen to both sides, and demand they act with fairness and common sense, lest this utter mess be allowed to continue. Because change is coming and it's only a matter of time.
- David Jones, Wynnum.