Pandemics And Distributed Generation
Does Energy Democracy Have Meaning in a Pandemic?
John Farrell, March 16, 2020 (Institute for Local Self Reliance)
“…[These thoughts about how decentralized and democratized energy systems might help us weather things like the COVID-19 pandemic come] from my living room couch, my kids out of school and doing a “home school” schedule while my wife and I try to work. We’re trying to be kind to one another and ourselves, realizing that none of what we do will live up to our ordinary standard in an extraordinary time…[D]istributed energy like rooftop or community solar can help reduce energy bills…While almost trivial against the nature of the threat, [a savings of about $65 per month in reduced electricity use (at national average prices) is] still a meaningful monetary benefit…
Fortunately, most utilities are suspending disconnections for 30 days during the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, the need is likely to extend far beyond 30 days…[Resiliency against an extreme weather event of natural disaster] might transform under threat of a pandemic….[D]istributed energy resources can help us in a dual disaster situation by allowing us to gather in smaller numbers…Distributed energy can’t solve a pandemic, but it helps to spend a few minutes trying to make sense of how energy democracy can have meaning at a time of unprecedented disruption.” click here for more