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We’re being kept in the dark more often

August 18, 2012

Power outages are way up, in large part the result of an aging power grid. Price tag to fix? $1.5 trillion.

In 2011, Americans experienced a combined 104,406 hours of power outages across the country (4,435 incidents), up 67 percent in just three years. Our 6,400 power plants and 18,150 generating units have about 99.97 percent reliability. The dark time equals about 26 seconds per day, every day – enough to cost businesses and families billions each year, from lost productivity to melted ice cream.

But what would it cost to modernize? See today’s slide show for the answer and much more, then see “What do Others Say?”, below, for a range of views on what to do.

(CORRECTS previous post from "uptime" to "reliability") -- 8.20.12

(CORRECTS "99.7 percent reliability" to "99.97 percent reliability." -- This changes dark time from 5 minutes to 26 seconds per day and loss of power from 2.5 hours to 2.6 hours each year.) -- 8.21.12