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How many places have part-hour time zones?

A Bell, Shrewsbury

Seven countries currently use so-called offset time zones--zones that aren't aligned on hourly boundaries.

Australia arguably has the most complex system, and it's regularly debated in the country's parliament. The government would like to simplify the whole system, but the rural lobby has successfully stymied such a move.

Australia's time zones are split not just along lines of longitude, but across latitudes, providing three basic time zones: GMT+8, GMT+9.5 and GMT+10. During summer, the total grows to five: Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia don't observe Daylight Saving Time (DST), the equivalent of British Summer Time, but the southernmost states do, advancing by an hour. Just to complicate things even further, Lord Howe Island, located off the coast of New South Wales, bucks the trend of moving time forward using DST in the summer. Its regular time of GMT+10.5 actually moves back by half an hour.

In Canada, the easternmost state of Newfoundland is 3.5 hours behind GMT. The other countries with offset time zones are: India (GMT+5.5), Iran (GMT+3.5), Afghanistan (GMT+4.5), Myanmar (GMT+6.5) and Nepal, which has opted for a time zone that isn't even aligned to a half-hour boundary, but is five hours and 45 minutes ahead of GMT.

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Author:Edwards, Chris
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2006
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