Quantcast

15 Million in Florida Lose Power During Hurricane Irma: Utilities Say Full Recovery Could Take Weeks

Popular
Florida Power & Light lineman. Enrique Flor

Millions of people in Florida are stuck without power in the wake of Hurricane Irma, and may have to wait for days or even weeks to turn their lights on again.

Three out of four Floridians lacked power at the peak of the outage earlier this week, while over 40 percent of the state remains unable to run refrigerators and air conditioners in sweltering late summer heat.


Thousands of utility workers from across the country are traveling to Florida to help repair the state's grid and restore service, but utilities say some Floridians may not have power until after September 22.

"This is going to be a very uncomfortable time," Robert Gould, vice president at Florida Power and Light, the state's largest utility, told ABC.

As reported by the Washington Post:

"Utility companies made progress as they undertook a massive recovery effort, restoring power to some. At its peak, the Department of Homeland Security said about 15 million Floridians—an astonishing three out of four state residents—lacked power.

By early Wednesday, state officials gradually lowered the number of customers without power, dropping it to about 4.4 million from 6.5 million on Monday. Because each power company account can represent multiple people, the sheer number of residents without electricity was massive: Going by the Homeland Security estimates, at one point Irma had knocked out power to one out of every 22 Americans."

For a deeper dive:

Power: AP, New York Times, Washington Post, Reuters

For more climate change and clean energy news, you can follow Climate Nexus on Twitter and Facebook, and sign up for daily Hot News.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Smog over Los Angeles. Westend61 / Getty Images

After four decades of improving air quality, the U.S. has started to take a step backwards, as the number of polluted days has ticked upwards over the last two years, the Associated Press reported.

Read More Show Less
Photobos / iStock / Getty Images

Governors in Vermont and Maine signed bills on Monday that will ban plastic bags in their states next year, The Hill reported.

The Maine ban will go into effect next Earth Day, April 22, 2020. The Vermont ban, which extends beyond plastic bags and is the most comprehensive plastics ban so far, will go into effect in July 2020. The wait time is designed to give businesses time to adjust to the ban.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
picture-alliance / AP Images / D. Goldman

By Daniel Moattar

Eastern Kentucky's hills are interrupted by jarring flats of bare rock: the aftermath of mountaintop removal mining, which uses explosives to destroy and harvest coal-rich peaks.

Read More Show Less
Members of Fossil Free Tompkins march at a parade in Ithaca. Fossil Free Tompkins

By Molly Taft

Lisa Marshall isn't your typical activist. For one thing, she's not into crowds. "I don't really like rallies," Marshall, a mom of three from upstate New York, said. "They're a little stressful — not my favorite thing."

Read More Show Less
An oil drilling site in a residential area of Los Angeles, California on July 16, 2014. Faces of Fracking / Flickr

By Jake Johnson

A comprehensive analysis of nearly 1,500 scientific studies, government reports, and media stories on the consequences of fracking released Wednesday found that the evidence overwhelmingly shows the drilling method poses a profound threat to public health and the climate.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
sonsam / iStock / Getty Images

By Grace Francese

A new Environmental Working Group (EWG) study published in Environmental Research found that nitrate, one of the most common contaminants of drinking water, may cause up to 12,594 cases of cancer per year, but that's not its only danger: It can pose unique health risks to children.

Read More Show Less
Melt water from Everest's Khumbu glacier. Ed Giles / Getty Images

The glaciers of the Himalayas are melting twice as fast as they were in the year 2000, a study published Wednesday in Science Advances found.

Read More Show Less
EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler signs his replacement for the Clean Power Plan. Win McNamee / Getty Images

Former coal lobbyist and Trump-appointed U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler signed a rule Wednesday that officially replaces the Obama-era Clean Power Plan with a new regulation that Wheeler said could lead to the opening of more coal plants, the Associated Press reported.

Read More Show Less