Manifesto Multilinko
Interesting links and notes on updates to my main website.

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Monday, July 24, 2006
power blackouts across America

I didn't realize that there have been massive power outages across the US.
I only did a search when I read that a data centre in LA had been down
(which is a bit of an issue in and of itself, since the whole point of a data centre is that it has backup power so that it never goes down).

Anyway, in the amazing non-conservation ("a private virtue"), non-Globally-Warming US,
severe weather (thunderstorms mostly) + power drains = power failure.

As a side note, just consider how much of our civilization depends on the weather being good, most of the time. Want to fly somewhere? No problem, sail into the clear sky. Want to put up some infrastructure? No problem, sunny days.

Plus which, is it just me, or is the fact that people are drawing so much power that the wires are literally melting perhaps a sign that conservation might be useful?

So, here's what popped up in Google News:

CNN - St. Louis struggles without power - July 24, 2006

Almost 300,000 electric customers in the St. Louis, Missouri, area remained in the dark Sunday night, four days after the first of two severe thunderstorms battered the region amid a lingering heat wave, a utility spokesman said.

Daily Journal - Power outages continue, but with cooler temperatures - July 23, 2006

Many [St. Louis] area residents were still without power Saturday and could continue to be until Monday or Tuesday.

As of 4 p.m. Saturday, 6,500 residents were without power in the Ironton-Potosi area. Mike Cleary, spokesperson for Ameren, said there were 347 without power in St. Francois County.

Cleary said unfortunately, they were not making as much progress as they had initially hoped. He said some of these lines are in rough rugged area and the damage is extensive.

New York Times - Restoration of Power in Queens Remains in Doubt - July 23, 2006

Tens of thousands of northwest Queens residents faced a seventh day without electricity today and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said that he could not estimate when the power would be restored.

Hopes for a full restoration of power this weekend was shattered by new barrages of severe thunderstorms and the discovery of more extensive damage to the underground power grid. - Another Day, Another Power Record Set - July 23, 2006

The Southland heat wave caused record power usage Saturday in the San Diego area, along with power outages, reported 10News.

Saturday afternoon, demand for SDG&E electricity in San Diego and southern Orange counties peaked at a record 4,502 megawatts, and about 74,000 customers were without power, said Peter Hidalgo of San Diego Gas & Electric.


Utility officials blamed the outages on the weather, saying the heat was causing people to use more electricity, which in turn was putting too much stress on old equipment.

Wires have "literally melted," Donovan said, and transformers have blown. - Power outages, heat blanket Valley - July 23, 2006

San Francisco Chronicle - State's power supply starting to feel strain from record heat wave - July 23, 2006

California basted Saturday in a heat wave described by meteorologists as unprecedented, breaking temperature records and pushing the state within a hair's breadth of a power crisis.


As California sizzled in the record heat wave, state regulators declared a Stage 1 power emergency, urging all residents to cut back on their electricity consumption to avoid potential blackouts.

Somehow, the conclusion appears to be that there is a need for more... supply.

Reuters - Record U.S. power demand points to supply need - July 23, 2006

Electricity grids in California, Texas, the Midwest, the Mid-Atlantic, New York and New England set all-time record peaks during the week as consumers cranked up their air conditioners.

America - "Making Ourselves a Third World Country, So the Terrorists Can't Win"

UPDATE: On another note, Cut to the Chase

makes an excellent point, which is that Baghdad is also ridiculously hot, and it has been without steady power now for years, post-invasion. Which doesn't seem to bother the American Powers that Be at all.