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This press release from Chile's Ministry of Energy was published using an automatic translation system.
Making the best decision thinking about the welfare of the people and considering all the possible variables was the message that the Energy Minister, Susana Jiménez, transmitted last May announcing that during August the Government of President Sebastián Piñera would define the time zones for the next four years.
The change of time that took place last Saturday, August 11, was the last one established in Supreme Decree 253 of 2016, which obliges the Government to define the new time regime of the country. This decree established winter time (UTC -4) for three months, between the second Saturday of May and the second Saturday of August, and the rest of the summer time (UTC -3).
During the last three months, the Ministry of Energy consulted more than 40 representatives of public and private institutions, civil society and specialists, to gather technical and scientific background on the impact of time zones on health, education, productivity, security, telecommunications, transport and energy efficiency, among others.
The new schedule: Five months of winter and seven of summer
"We have decided as Government that from 2019 the winter schedule (UTC -4) will be increased to five months, from the first Saturday in April to the first Saturday in September, which will allow for more light in the mornings. practically to zero the days when the sun will rise after 8 in the morning, between the regions of Arica and El Maule, which will benefit 12.6 million people, equivalent to 70% of the population. from the regions of Biobío to Aysén there will be many more days with light in the morning, "Energy Minister Susana Jiménez announced at a press conference in the company of Undersecretary Ricardo Irarrázabal.
The Secretary of State emphasized that this "is relevant because science has shown that having natural light in the morning is very important for the wellbeing of people and, especially, for the growth and learning of children. our Government, have a priority attention and special care ".
Undersecretary Irarrázabal added that scientific evidence has shown that initiating daily activities without natural light has a negative effect on the health, concentration and performance of people, especially children and adolescents, who naturally wake up naturally due to their biological cycle. later than adults, and require natural light for better learning. Susana Jiménez also stressed that summer time will start on the first Saturday of September of each year, which will also allow for more light in the afternoon.
"This is important so that people can enjoy public spaces and recreational activities, which is part of our culture and tradition when spring begins," Jiménez said.
The Region of Magallanes and the Chilean Antarctic will maintain their summer schedule throughout the year, as decided by citizens in 2017, but the Government will promote a Regional Dialogue Table to gather their opinion on this.
"I want to emphasize, in addition, that this new time regime will remain unchanged during this government, so we want to give peace to the population," said Minister Jiménez.
The undersecretary explained that the announcement is made eight months in advance so that the population is duly informed, and all the actors make their decisions in a planned manner, especially those related to technologies, productive activities and air transport.
55 days in Santiago amaneció after 8am with winter schedule that ended on Saturday 11 The time zone that governed until Saturday August 11 meant that in the Metropolitan Region there were 55 days when the sun came out after 8 o'clock in the morning . In Arica they were 5 days, in Tarapacá (10), Antofagasta (28), Atacama (40), Coquimbo (55), Valparaíso (63), Rancagua (57), Maule (66), Biobío (77), Araucanía (76) ), Los Ríos (80), Los Lagos (78), Aysén (76) and Magallanes (75).