March 1, 2016
Mother Nature keeps hammering home where we need microgrids.
Last week it happened again. More than 1.7 million electric customers lost power February 23-24 when a major storm swept the Eastern U.S. and Canada, according to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Assurance Daily.
The storm was an example of the all-to-common pounding of wind, water, ice and snow that underscores the vulnerabilities of the interconnected grid.
Eversource, which serves Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hamphire, was hardest hit in the Northeast. The utility reported that it had to remove 70 large trees and repair 100 broken poles and 30,000 feet of overhead line. In all, more than 89,000 Eversource customers lost power. In the Southeast, lights went out for more than 400,000 Duke Energy customer. And in Canada, Hydro-Quebec reported 250,000 outages.
This follows a blizzard that knocked out power in 14 states in late January and an El Nino storm that left 243,000 California and Arizona customers without lights around the same time. Thunder storms shut off power to 369,000 across eastern U.S. February 15–16. And 378,000 New Englanders lost power from a February 5 snowfall. And those are just some of the weather-related outages over the last month. For full article.