Time in Australia

Australia uses three main time zones,Australian Western Standard Time, Australian Central Standard Time, andAustralian Eastern Standard Time.

Time is regulated by the individual stategovernments, some of which observe daylight saving time.

Australia'sexternal territories observe different time zones.

Standard time was introduced in the 1890s when all of the Dominions adoptedit.

Before the switch to standard time zones, each local city or town was freeto determine its local time, called local mean time.

Now, Western Australiauses Western Standard Time; South Australia and the Northern Territory useCentral Standard Time; while New South Wales, Queensland, Tasmania, Victoria,and the Australian Capital Territory use Eastern Standard Time.

Daylight saving time is used in South Australia, New South Wales, Victoria,Tasmania, and the ACT.

It is not currently used in Western Australia,Queensland and the Northern Territory.

History The standardization of time in Australia began in 1892, when surveyors from thesix Dominions in Australia met in Melbourne for the IntercolonialConference of Surveyors.

The delegates accepted the recommendation of the 1884International Meridian Conference to adopt Greenwich Mean Time as the basisfor standard time.

The Dominions enacted time zonelegislation, which took effect in February 1895.

The clocks were set aheadof GMT by eight hours in Western Australia; by nine hours in SouthAustralia; and by 10 hours in Queensland, New South Wales, theDominion of Victoria and Tasmania.

The three time zones became known as EasternStandard Time, Central Standard Time, and Western Standard Time.

Broken Hillin the far west of New South Wales also adopted Central Standard Time due to itbeing connected by rail to Adelaide but not Sydney at the time.

In May 1899, South Australia advanced Central Standard Time by thirty minutes,disregarding the common international practice of setting one-hour intervalsbetween adjacent time zones.

In doing so, South Australia also adopted a timemeridian located outside its boundaries – another departure from internationalconvention.

Attempts to correct these oddities in 1986 and 1994 were rejected.

When the Northern Territory was separated from South Australia andplaced under the jurisdiction of the Federal Government, that Territory keptCentral Standard Time.

Likewise, when the ACT was broken off from New SouthWales, it retained Eastern Standard Time.

Since 1899, the only major changes in Australian time zones have been thesetting of clocks to one-half hour earlier than Eastern time on theterritory of Lord Howe Island, and Norfolk Island changing from UTC+11:30to UTC+11:00 on 4 October 2015.

When abbreviating "Australian CentralTime" and "Australian Eastern Time", in domestic contexts the leading"Australian" may be omitted, however the prefix "A" is often used to avoidambiguity with the time zone abbreviations "CST" and "EST" referringto the Central and Eastern Time Zones in North America.

Civil time and legislation Though the governments of the states andterritories have the power to legislate variations in time, the standard timewithin each of these is set related to Coordinated Universal Time as determinedby the International Bureau of Weights and Measures and set by section 8AA ofthe National Measurement Act of 1960 [1] of the Commonwealth.

Australia has kept a version of the UTC atomic time scale since the 1990s, butGreenwich Mean Time remained the formal basis for the standard times of all ofthe states through 2005.

In November 2004, the state and territoryattorneys-general endorsed a proposal from the Australian National MeasurementInstitute to adopt UTC as the standard of all Australian standard times,thereby eliminating the effects of slight variations in the rate ofrotation of the Earth that are inherent in mean solar time.

All states haveadopted the UTC standard, starting on 1 September 2005.

In Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania.

and the ACT, the starting and endingdates of daylight saving times are officially determined by proclamations,declarations, or regulation made by the State Governor or by the responsibleminister.

Such instruments may be valid for only the current year, and so thissection generally only refers to the legislation.

In New South Wales andWestern Australia, the starting and ending dates, if any, are to be set bylegislation.

Western Standard Time – UTC+08:00Western Australia – Standard Time Act 2005Central Standard Time- UTC+09:30 South Australia – Standard Time Act 2009and the Daylight Saving Act 1971 Northern Territory – Standard Time Act2005 Eastern Standard Time – UTC+10:00Queensland – Standard Time Act 1894 New South Wales – Standard Time Act 1987No 149 Australian Capital Territory – StandardTime and Summer Time Act 1972 Victoria – Summer Time Act 1972Tasmania – Standard Time Act 1895 and the Daylight Saving Act 2007= Daylight saving time = The choice of whether to use DST is amatter for the governments of the individual states and territories.

However, during World War I and World War II all states and territories useddaylight saving time.

In 1968 Tasmania became the first state in peacetime touse DST, followed in 1971 by New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, SouthAustralia, and the Australian Capital Territory.

Western Australia and theNorthern Territory did not adopt it.

Queensland abandoned DST in 1972.

Queensland and Western Australia have occasionally used DST during the past 40years during trial periods.

The main DST zones are the following:(Australian) Central Daylight Time – UTC+10:30, in South Australia(Australian) Eastern Daylight Time – UTC+11, in New South Wales, the ACT,Victoria, and Tasmania.

During the usual periods of DST, thethree standard time zones in Australia become five zones.

This includes theareas that do not observe DST: Western Australia, the Northern Territory, andQueensland.

The change to and from DST takes placeat 2:00 am local standard time the appropriate Sunday.

Until 2008, DSTusually began on the last Sunday in October, and ended on the last Sunday inMarch.

However, Tasmania, given its latitude further south, began DSTearlier, on the first Sunday in October, and ended it later, on the first Sundayof April.

On 12 April 2007, New South Wales,Victoria, Tasmania, and the ACT agreed to common beginning and ending dates forDST from 2008.

DST in these states and South Australia began on the firstSunday in October and ended on the first Sunday in April.

Western Australia wasthen the only state to use DST from the last Sunday in October to the lastSunday in March, but it abolished DST in 2009.

= Anomalies = The town of Broken Hill, is in farwestern New South Wales.

Unlike the rest of New South Wales, Broken Hill observesAustralian Central Standard Time a time zone it shares with South Australia andthe Northern Territory.

As mentioned above, at the time standard time wasadopted, Broken Hill was linked to Adelaide by rail, not Sydney.

Lord Howe Island, part of the state of New South Wales but 600 km east of theAustralian mainland in the Pacific Ocean, uses UTC+10:30 during the wintermonths, but advances to UTC+11:00 in summer.

A compromise between Western and Central time, unofficially known as CentralWestern Standard Time, is used in one area in the southeastern corner ofWestern Australia and one roadhouse in South Australia.

Towns east of Caigunaon the Eyre Highway, follow "CWST" instead of Western Australian time.

Thetotal population of that area is estimated at 200 people.

This area didnot change when South Australia introduced DST.

During the WesternAustralian trial of DST from 2006 to 2009, this area also sets its clocksahead one hour during summer.

This time zone is not officially recognized.

The Indian Pacific train has its own time zone – a so-called "train time"when travelling between Kalgoorlie, Western Australia and Port Augusta,South Australia – which was at UTC plus 9:00 hours during November 2005 when DSTwas observed in the eastern and southern states.

= External territories = Australia's external territories followdifferent time zones.

= Special events =In 2000, all of the eastern jurisdictions that normally observe DST— New South Wales, Victoria, the ACT, and Tasmania — began DST early becauseof the Summer Olympic Games held in Sydney.

These jurisdictions moved to DSTon 27 August 2000.

South Australians did not change their clocks until the usualdate, which was 29 October 2000.

In 2006, all of the states that followedDST delayed their return to Standard Times by one week, because of theCommonwealth Games held in Melbourne.

DST ended on 2 April 2006.

= National times = There are situations in which anationwide time is in effect.

In the case of business activities, a nationaltime can be used.

For example, a prospectus for the issue of stock in acompany would usually set the closing time for offers at some location as thetime when offers must be received, regardless of the source of the offer.

Similarly, tenders for their sale of stock usually set out the time at agiven location by which they must be received to be considered.

Anotherexample is the Australian Stock Exchange which operates on Eastern Standard Time.

On the other hand, Federal legislation yields to state-regulated standard timesin many diverse situations.

For example, it yields in setting the normal workingtimes of Federal employees, the recognition of public holidays, etc.

TheFederal government also relies on local times for Federal elections, so that thepolls in Western Australia close two or three hours after those in the easternstates.

Also, documents to be filed in a Federal Court may be filed based on thelocal time.

The effect of this is that if there had been a failure to file alegal document on time in an eastern State, that document can sometimes stillbe filed in Western Australia.

IANA time zone database The 13 zones for Australia as given by zone.

Tab of the IANA time zone database.

Columns marked * are from the zone.


Debate, trials and referendums = Queensland = Queensland has had a particularlyinvolved debate over daylight saving time, with public opinion geographicallydivided.

A referendum on DST in 1992, following a three-year trial, and wasdefeated with a 54.

5 percent negative vote.

The referendum result displayed adistinct trend – that public opinion on DST in Queensland is geographicallydivided, with the negative vote being strongest in northern and westerndistricts, while the positive vote being strongest in the southeastern region.

Since the early 2000s, there have been a number of petitions submitted toLegislative Assembly of Queensland, lobbying for the introduction ofdaylight saving time or for another referendum to be held.

A petition in2006 was signed by 62,232 people.

In response to these petitions, thenQueensland Premier Peter Beattie commissioned research to find out if itshould be re-introduced into Queensland.

Around this time, Premier Peter Beattiepredicted that daylight saving in Queensland would increase the rate ofskin cancer in the state, an assertion for which there is no evidence,according to the Queensland Cancer Fund.

In October 2007, thegovernment-commissioned research was presented to the new Premier Anna Bligh,who ruled out holding a new referendum, despite the report indicating that 59percent of the residents of Queensland and 69 percent of those in southeasternQueensland to be in favour of adopting daylight saving.

In December 2008, the Daylight Saving for South East Queensland politicalParty was officially registered, to advocate for the use of a two-time-zonesystem for DST in Queensland, with most the State using standard time.

Thisparty contested the March 2009 Queensland State election with 32candidates, and it received about one percent of the statewide primary vote.

In early 2010, the DS4SEQ political party approached the independent member,Peter Wellington, to introduce a private member's bill for DST.

Since Mr.

Wellington agreed with the principles of the DS4SEQ proposal, specifically thedual-time-zone system, he drafted the DST for southeastern QueenslandReferendum Bill of 2010 and he submitted this bill to Queensland Parliament on 14April 2010.

Wellington has called for a referendum to be held at the next Stateelection on the introduction of DST into southeastern Queensland under thedual-time-zone system.

In response to this bill, the Premier ofQueensland, Anna Bligh, announced a community consultation process, whichresulted in over 74,000 respondents participating, 64 percent of whom votedin favour of a trial, and 63 percent of whom were in favour of holding areferendum.

The decision announced by the Premier on 7 June 2010 was that herGovernment would not support the bill because rural Queenslanders wereoverwhelmingly opposed to DST.

The Bill was defeated in Queensland Parliament on15 June 2011.

= Western Australia =Western Australia has also had a particularly involved debate over DST,with the issue being put to a referendum four times: in 1975, 1984, 1992, and2009.

All of these proposals to adopt DST were defeated.

Voters registered anegative vote of 54.

6 percent in the 2009 referendum, the highest percentagefor all four of these referendums.

Each referendum followed a trial periodduring which the state observed DST.

The first three followed a one-year trial,while the 2006 Western Australian Daylight Saving Bill 2006 instituted atrial of DST beginning on 3 December 2006, and lasting for three years.

See also List of time zonesDaylight Saving for South East QueenslandDaylight Saving for South East Queensland Referendum Act 2010Queensland daylight saving referendum, 1992Notes References The Australian National Time System National Standards Commission LeafletNo.

8, January 2003.

Linked via Wayback machineNSW Legislative Council Hansard, 2 March 2005Daylight Saving Petitions Daylight Saving Time History of daylightsaving time implementation dates at the Bureau of Meteorology website.

External links Information on time zones from officialGovernment web site Daylight Saving for South EastQueensland political party Official DS4SEQ website.

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