Skip to comments.How to Survive: Lessons from Puerto Rico
Posted on 10/08/2017 11:20:39 AM PDT by Kaslin
The takedown of the Puerto Rican power grid by Hurricane Irma will, we hope, provide a teaching moment. The United States power grid is vulnerable, and the consequences of a widespread failure, especially if lengthy, will be a disaster of monumental proportions. This should not be a new realization. Serious analysts such as the Foundation for Resilient Societies and the EMP Commission have been warning us for a long time. The warnings have been ignored or even actively opposed by the electric power industry.
America's electric grid can be brought down by sabotage or by natural forces, such as the hurricane in Puerto Rico. Hurricanes have limited geographic scope, but solar storms can affect the entire country. As was shown by the Puerto Rican experience, without electricity, credit and debit cards don't work. Cash becomes king. Without electricity, communications become dubious.
Among natural threats to the electric grid, solar storms are perhaps the most serious. A solar storm causes the Earth's magnetic field to move and induce large direct currents in long conductors, such as power lines and communications cables. The 1859 Carrington Event was so powerful that some telegraph operators were electrocuted by voltages induced in the wires. Fortunately, in 1859, the power grid did not exist. A smaller March 1989 solar storm crashed the Quebec power grid and destroyed a large power transformer at the Salem nuclear generating station in New Jersey. If the 1989 solar storm had been as severe as the Carrington Event, much of the North American grid could have gone down for months or years.
(Excerpt) Read more at americanthinker.com ...
I did not know.
But better stock up on hot sauce...
“Certainly, there is no shortage of food. At any time, there are enough corn and soybeans stored in the Midwest to feed the entire country for five years.”
Every electric company should have lots of spare parts. Buy now, save on higher prices in the future.
I’m not sure why lines are still strung up on poles when a bunch of it could be buried under ground? Especially in areas of high wind.
First, don’t be dirt poor.
This article is right in your wheelhouse, is it not?
Because burying high voltage transmission and distribution line is very, very expensive compared to putting them up on poles.
>>Im not sure why lines are still strung up on poles when a bunch of it could be buried under ground? Especially in areas of high wind.
Because the customers don’t understand business or electricity. They want everything and want it now and think it should be free because “it’s a necessity”. Underground comes with flooding problems (the transformers are on the ground). Above ground comes with wind problems. Then there are the transmission voltages that make 100% underground impossible.
Undergrounding also becomes a problem when water, sewer, reuse, storm drains, cable, and telephone are also underground. This is why new subdivisions are easily undergrounded, but a retrofit is very costly.
You bet. Sooner or later, all the power goes out and stays out.
Tell that to their Public Utilities Commissions.
Puerto Rico’s power company was $9 billion in debt before this year’s hurricanes, and is plagued with power outages just because the grid is old. The PR power company gives away power free to government and the politically connected.
How much are YOU willing to pay for an underground grid in PR? PR isn’t going to pay for it.
How can we lecture others not to go into debt when the Federal Government leads the way in that department?
This goes against what responsible like you and I do but let me spell it out for you...
Leverage the crap out of everything, borrow as much as possible, default on your obligations and let someone else clean up the mess.
That’s how the world works now.
One man who was a farmer had put in a solar greenhouse. 50% of it survived. Solar might be the way to go....but of course not totally.
>>Im not sure why lines are still strung up on poles when a bunch of it could be buried under ground? Especially in areas of high wind.<<
Several reasons. Two of the bigger ones are (1) buried cables lose power, and (2) while a buried cable is less likely to go out in a storm, if it DOES go out (say because of flooding, rodent chewing, digging, etc), it can take ten times as long to find and fix the problem.
Here’s a presentation on the issues:
Certainly, there is no shortage of food. At any time, there are enough corn and soybeans stored in the Midwest to feed the entire country for five years.
True, but with inoperable microwave ovens 1/2 the country would starve.
Basic Prepping 101:
Start with loss of electricity and Prep from there...
That would lead to some very hard times, indeed!
As you so often remind us.
This article did identify problems quite well, but the solutions were for the most part really bad.
The authors point about national power grid vulnerability was spot on, but the suggested “solution” was just another added level of problems. Yes, the power grid is vulnerable. But why continue to put our eggs in that rickety basket? Smaller grids with redundancy and distributed generation are a much better plan. In a world without power, the people with microgrids and working solar arrays will perservere.
As for requiring everyone to have 30 days of food and water on hand, I think that’s a great goal. But are we going to form a prepper police to enforce a legal requirement to do so? Are we going to fine and jail folks because they don’t have enough beanie wienies in their pantry?
I'm sure the insects have figured this out by now.
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