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October 05, 2018, Finland - "Finland THL declares support for winter time, says summer time offers no health benefits", by Aleksi Teivainen, Helsinki Times

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Big Dipper and Aurora Borealis out the airplane window.

Big Dipper and Aurora Borealis out the airplane window Photo Alexander Krivenyshev WorldTimeZone
The National Institute of Health and Welfare (THL) urges Finland to adopt winter time on a permanent basis, saying there is no research-based evidence of the positive effects of summer time.

The National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) urges Finland to shift to standard, or winter, time on a permanent basis following the expected abolition of daylight saving time across the European Union.

The European Commission in August recommended that all member states abolish the biannual exercise and adopt a time zone of their choice on a permanent basis.

THL, a Finnish research and development institute established under the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, on Thursday revealed that it submitted a statement on the issue to the European Commission in August, representing the first cogent argument in favour of one of the options for Finland.

It pointed out that adopting summer time permanently would increase exposure to light in the evenings, which causes delays in the circadian clock and leads to health issues.

"There is no reliable evidence of the health benefits of using time," summarised THL. "Using summer time has negative but no positive health effects. Summer time regulations have not been justified with any research-based evidence. Summer time regulations affecting the entire population also are consequential from a public health perspective."

The Ministry of Transport and Communications has opened an online survey to allow the public to express their views on which time zone - summer time, winter time or another time zone - should be adopted permanently in Finland. Over 120,000 Finns responded to the survey in little over 24 hours after its launch on Wednesday, 26 September.

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