How will you prepare for a future of uncertain power infrastructure?
California is a beautiful place to live with many attractive features, such as diverse terrain of mountains, ocean, and consistent climate. However, there was a very clear reason I decided to move my family to North Idaho. Wildfires caused me to relocate my family twice in ten years. One of which wiped out the water supply in my town for six months, along with frequent power outages.
While it seems to be an ideal place to live for many, the looming dangers of power outages PG&E threatens over the next decade, due to long time well known poor infrastructure, will be a determining factor on not only its resident's way of life, but also its economy. What do businesses do to stay afloat during power outages? What do people do when they need to operate power medical equipment such as CPAP machines or dialysis equipment? What about the threat of opening up the ground for looting and other crimes?
While power outages are a relatively uncommon occurrence in other parts of the country, they often last over a day in many counties of the golden state. In pure quantity, California has experienced almost seven times as many as the runner up, Texas, since 2016 according to the site poweroutage.us. While they have happened to residents using a wide variety of electric companies, the most common culprit in the case of large scale power outages is PG&E.
PG&E is the largest energy provider for much of California and, though they have been criticized often loudly in the past, recently they have fallen into even hotter water with the State of California. On the 13th of November, the California Public Utilities Commission voted for an official investigation into large shutdowns, caused by PG&E along with other power companies, the previous month that left over 2.6 million California residents without power. Between the dates of October 5th and November 1st, a total of 12 power outages occurred across the state. This investigation is not only meant to hold power companies accountable for the shut offs, but also to look into better means of regulating the danger of wildfires in the future; which are a major reason behind the power outages.
While PG&E are to blame for many of the largest power outages, there are other companies as well. If you head over to https://poweroutage.us/area/state/california you can find an up-to-date map of current power outages and a data set of the total power outages for each electricity provider.
Power outages don’t simply happen for no reason though, and there is an obvious reason for the recent spike in outages across the state: wildfires. Normally, there wouldn’t be much of a correlation between the two, but in the golden state you can thank PG&E again for creating this terrifying and destructive case of cause and effect. According to an investigation done by the Wall Street Journal, the massive power company was aware for years that parts of their extensive 18,500 mile long cable system were outdated and in need of revamping, but chose to do nothing about it. This, combined with the increasing temperatures caused by changing climate drying out the already dry California countryside, has turned much of the state into a veritable tinderbox that could burst into flame at any moment.
It is time for Californian's to become power independent of PG&E.
How is this done? Solar power is more affordable than ever right now, and here at Survival Gear Systems, we have had increasing inquiries about how to purchase and install solar power systems over this past year. Most systems can be installed either by a savvy homeowner or a local electrician. You can either rely on it for backup power, or you can use it as your main source of power. Most systems these days are all inclusive - battery, inverter, and charge controller are in one box that you hook up to solar panels. Or you can purchase any of the many portable solar units on the market to run appliances and lights during a blackout.
The other option is obviously a gas generator. While these are our top sellers because most people can hook them up quickly and easily with minimal knowledge of electricity, they are loud and take gas or propane or both. What happens when you can't get gas conveniently because gas tanks are run on electricity as well? A long term power outage could be a problem in this case, and they are not suitable for areas with high fire danger.
If you live in California, whatever you choose to do, just be prepared for a very difficult future where power is concerned and by all means, stay safe!
Article written by Desiree Jones, Founder of Survival Gear Systems, and Nicholas Oetken, writer for Survival Gear Systems, Guns.com, and many more top survivalist websites.
TOP POWER SOLUTIONS FOR CALIFORNIA HOMEOWNERS
Unlike other solar power battery backup and power systems, Humless is the only one that works with ALL GRID TYPES. You can purchase portable or backup systems, or custom total home power units like the Universal. In any case, Survival Gear Systems can hook you up with the best solution at the best prices. Prices range from $1200 to $50,000 depending on how extensive you want to get on the solar power reliance.
Lion Energy is a new company that we find to offer some of the most innovative and high quality portable power products. Based out of Utah, they offer amazing customer service and extensively test their product before it leaves the warehouse. We are offering extended kits at discount bundle prices for disaster prep, blackouts, and portable situations. These are great for temporary power outages, where you can plug and play appliances and lights without the noise of a generator. They double as off grid power for camping, operating power tools, or medical devices.
GAS & PROPANE GENERATORS
There are hundreds of Gas and Propane Generator manufacturers, but we tend to rely on the Duromax generators as the best recommendation. Their customer service is great, they ship out fast, and they are reliable units. The engine is built by Duromax and they come in some very powerful wattages, all the way up to 13000.