Ready for a Wild Hurricane Season? Renewable Microgrids Are

Wild Hurricane Season Renewable Microgrids lower emissions economic development

Community members in areas with increasingly extreme weather like Florida, Texas, and Puerto Rico are fed up. Every couple of years a powerful storm hits, causing extended power outages, putting safety at risk, and damaging buildings and key infrastructure. Though it is a matter of when, not if, these storms will come again, as soon as the clean-up is finished, leaders move energy resilience and preparedness to the back burner and the cycle continues with the next storm.

But there is a way to lessen the blows. Energy technologies like solar and battery storage have proven time and again to provide reliable power, and now they are more affordable than ever. So why aren’t leaders scaling them up for resiliency ahead of impending extreme weather?

While hurricane season did not officially begin until June 1st, this pattern started to play out this Spring. Take Texas, for example. Last month, thunderstorms, powerful winds, and flood-inducing rain knocked out power to over 800,000 people and caused seven casualties. After the storm, temperatures climbed to over 90 degrees, and those that were without power could not run their air conditioning in the stifling heat. Just a couple of weeks later, more extreme weather hit Texas. Having to deal with multiple storms is not unique to Texas — in Florida, there were three named hurricanes over two months in 2020.

Unfortunately for the over 60 million people that live in hurricane-affected geographies, more weather events like this are likely on the way. Forecasts from leading experts for the 2024 season are “daunting.” High ocean temperatures along with weather affected by the El Niño and La Niña patterns led the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to their highest May prediction of hurricanes ever. Given increasing ocean and air temperatures, stronger weather events have become the new normal.

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