Pat Shingleton: "Ben Started it and the Mayans..."
The reason for “Summer Time” or Daylight Saving Time is to make use of daylight. America’s delegate to Paris, Benjamin Franklin, first conceived the idea in 1784 and noted his reasons in an essay called, An Economical Project. London builder, William Willett, proposed advancing clocks 20 minutes on consecutive Sundays in April; lessening the same amount on four Sundays in September. Almost a hundred years after Ben’s suggestion, the U.S Department of Transportation adopted National Standard time to control train schedules. The first energy benefits of Summer Time were recognized during World War II. In closing, Mayans were known for their mastery of language, math and astronomy. In 2010, the Mayan calendar expired on the 21st of December and the Yucatan Center for Scientific Research and the University of Southampton believe that the collapse of the civilization was due to a mild drought. Scholars originally thought that a major drought caused conditions that eradicated the ancient culture. Recent data suggests that the drought caused reductions of 25 to 40 percent less annual rain. Smaller amounts meant that open water sources in pools and lakes evaporated faster than needed replacement precipitation. The Journal Science reported that the main cause was a decrease in summer storm activity. The study focused on decreasing rainfall between 800 and 950 AD and was based on rainfall changes from stalagmites and shallow lakes.