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August 5, 2020

Almost half of Eversource's CT customers reporting outages

Photo | Eversource/via Twitter Eversource said Tropical Storm Isaias caused major tree damage across Connecticut.

Nearly half of Eversource's Connecticut customers have been affected by power outages due to Tropical Storm Isaias, with almost 622,000 outages reported to the electric utility.

The storm tore through Connecticut and much of the East Coast Tuesday afternoon into Wednesday morning, and Eversource's line and tree crews have been responding to outages and damage caused by the storm, the company said. Outages have affected about 48% of the utility's customers.

Getting customers' power up and running is especially important amid the COVID-19 pandemic, said Eversource Vice President of Electric Operations Mike Hayhurst, who also acknowledged that enhanced sanitization and social distancing among the crews could slow repairs.

“With many customers still working remotely during this challenging time, we recognize how important it is to have reliable power,” Hayhurst said. "Our team will work around-the-clock to restore power as quickly and safely as possible – yet some restorations may take longer as we work to ensure the safety of our employees and customers.”

Gov. Ned Lamont late Wednesday morning declared a state of emergency in response to widespread power outages caused by Tropical Storm Isaias. The governor's office said the declaration authorizes Lamont to order certain actions to accelerate the state's response.

“I remain in consistent communication with municipal leaders and utility officials so that we can move resources to where they are most needed at this time," Lamont said in a statement. "I continue to have regular communications with our emergency operations center, which is managing both the response to this storm and our continued response to COVID-19.”

Eversource is encouraging customers to report any downed power lines by calling 9-1-1, and to report power outages online at, or by phone at 800-286-2000.

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August 5, 2020

First I want to extend my hopes that most of you have power or will soon. That being said, this weather event (sometimes hurricane, sometimes extreme storm) we have just experienced has left approximately 715,000 of customers without power. Don't get me wrong, this is very bad and comes close to the numbers in 2011 when what is referred to as The Two Storms occurred. This is particularly important for a number of groups be they aged or suffering from conditions that require power for devices to keep them alive.

This may also just be a whiff of what enhanced climate change may have in store for us and a primary reason we need to begin in earnest to decentralize the electric grid as opposed to the highly centralized grid we have today. It seems that building the same old grid back "stronger" did not work too well as a tactic and costed us a huge amount of money. The article below reenforces this need with its numbers which may not even be complete as it is only for the two major power providers and we have some independent providers not counted herein. For anybody wanting more information on what decentralization entails, I can send you a pictorial primer on grid security considerations...and I have much more available.

August 5, 2020

After spending millions of dollars, if not hundreds of millions of dollars, to "harden" the grid since the famous Two Storms of 2011, we have experienced yet another record-making outage event. To "harden" connotes brittleness and it appears that is exactly what we have in this still highly centralized system.

For decades now I have endorsed the work of energy guru Amory Lovins who suggested maximizing energy efficiency AND using microgrids in what he called the "soft path". Regulators, some business interests and legislators alike fell for the utility line for any number of reasons. But with climate change promising any number of similar surprises it is time for the utilities to really be regulated for a change and make the move to a system that is not only decentralized for safety and resilience but for economy as well. If it takes allowing far more competition than we have today, then so be it and let the dinosaurs fall where they may.

Joel Gordes
Energy & Environmental Security Strategist

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