Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

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Fel
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Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by Fel »

So, after 3 weeks, I finally have internet back in my house.

For those of you not on twitter, basically what happened was we got hit with back to back ice storms. The second one hit before the ice could even melt from the first, and they coated absolutely everything in nearly 3 centimeters of ice. Then it snowed on top of the ice, which put so much weight and strain on the trees here that most of them either had nearly all of their branches broken off of them or the trees were uprooted and fell...right over the power lines. I lost power for 10 days, there was damage to the vinyl siding of my house, and as I said, my internet was out for 3 weeks.

If you wanna see pictures of it, you can see them on my twitter timeline. It was fairly nasty.

I've lived here in this area off and on for most of my life, and we have never, NEVER, had that much destruction here in western WV from a weather event, at least not in my lifetime. There are places here that STILL don't have power, after 3 weeks, because of the sheer amount of damage to the power grid that we sustained.
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Woostaman
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Re: Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by Woostaman »

I feel you dude. I live in Texas and we basically had the same thing happen. There are a bunch of tree limbs or fully fallen trees in my yard that I have to clean up. Thankfully none of them landed on a power line and I was never part of the rolling blackouts. Pretty sure it was because I was so close to an ER and they tried to leave power alone for them. But I was out of water for about a week, I smelled pretty bad by the end of it lol.
I've only seen it this bad, at least tree wise, once before when I was a kid about 25 years ago. Lived in the country then and had way more trees falling over bc of Ice on them and ended up being without power for about 2 weeks. And the internet was out for about 10 years... ok we still had dial up but once I went to college and experienced real internet I stopped considering dial up as real internet lol.
Now that you have joined the world again internet wise I hope everything starts to get better.
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Fawks
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Re: Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by Fawks »

I'm just south of DFW. We lost power for over 32 hours total. We lost water for over 24 hours, boil water orders for at least a week and the water pressure is still not back to normal three weeks later.
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J-Man5
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Re: Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by J-Man5 »

I live NW of San Antonio and we had it decent during the snow-vid 2021 problems. But my dad was in San Antonio and lost power for the whole week. Which means no heat, no water since he is on a well. The pipes ended up freezing. The well head froze, the pressure tank froze. I somehow got him to leave on Tuesday after being out of power from that Sunday and he went home on Friday. His hotel had power since it was next door to a police substation. But they didn’t have water. They used pool water to flush toilets. He is 76 and we just lost mom in January. It was extremely hard to help him remotely since we couldn’t drive in due to ice. Shows how fragile all our systems are. Would have thought that the water systems would have had backup power at their pumps for the San Antonio Water System. I did a lot of reading on how the electrical grid works and went from proud that Texas had a separate grid to horrified. If the power consumption drops too much the 60hz cycle on the power can increase to a faster rate and if the consumption becomes greater than production it can drop to a lower Hz cycle rate. Power Generation stations will drop offline if the Hz rate goes over 0.5 Hz difference. So 60.5 Hz is too much and 59.5 Hz is too little. That’s why there were rolling blackouts or in the case of my dad’s home just plain old blackout full time for 6 days. In electrical generation since there is no storage system power generation must always nearly equal power consumption. While I am all for green renewable energy since it is inconsistent and weather dependent it makes it much harder for power generation companies to balance the grid to the 60 Hz cycle.


Hope that helps someone else understand what happened.


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Re: Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by Fawks »

I agree J-Man5. Solar and wind is great for a grid boost during the summer daytime heat but is too unreliable for a larger portion of the energy production. Yes, a larger Mega wattage of fossil fuel power went offline during the sub 10 degree weather than so called renewable energy but, the percentage of power types that was offline shows a much different reality.

I just found an article that said 32% of Wind, 25% of Natural Gas and 15% of coal plants went offline during the Big Freeze. The article did say the percentage includes plants that were already down for scheduled maintenance before the summer heat hits.

Did you know that the fed Department of Energy DEMANDED that any plant that produced any more than their allotted amount, as determined by the fed EPA, was forced to charge users $1500 per Megawatt hour. Which is around fifteen or more times the average cost of a Megawatt hour.


https://www.energy.gov/sites/prod/files ... 4.2021.pdf
Look at page 3 paragraphs (i) and (ii).
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Re: Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by J-Man5 »

Yeah our overall energy strategy situation is absolutely apes*it dumb. There is no clear answer how to do it but how it is being done today is wrong. The Dept of Energy and the EPA are pretty much fractured on how to handle anything.
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kyli
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Re: Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by kyli »

I say go full nuclear. While human error can be a problem, the technology is sound. There are multiple nuclear plants in America already. It's cheap, the risk of meltdown is almost non existent baring extreme negligence and it's the most efficient, green, energy source available. It's the best of everything except some people freak out at the thought of radiation. You know, back when AC power lines first came out, there was a campaign by the DC industry to give it a black name by claiming it was extremely dangerous and they even made sure the electric chair used AC power and then used it as part of their campaign to try to blacklist it. The blacklisted nuclear energy reminds me of that.
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Re: Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by Woostaman »

Nuclear power is sound and if the plant is built in the right place and built right it can be pretty safe but the biggest downside of nuclear is actually the nuclear waste. The vast majority of nuclear plants store this onsite and it never goes anywhere. Sure there have been attempts to make disposal facilities, the main push being the Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository but to this day it still is not used fully. And even if they did (IMO I'm not sure using this facility is a great idea either) we would have nuclear waste being shipped by train or truck from all over the USA which is just one train or truck crash away from a huge disaster. So if we went full nuclear that problem would just become 10 to 100 times worse than it already is.
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kyli
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Re: Mother Nature is a %@$^%#.

Post by kyli »

It is a problem but it isnt insurmountable. More nuclear waste bunkers spread across the country with good, safe access for waste transport. If we manage to discover safe and viable fusion in the near future, that would be great but until then, nuclear is the best option, both for the environment, and for affordability. Solar is an interesting option, but the cost of solar to both your wallet and the environment is during manufacturing the panels, and that's on top of only producing electricity half the time. It isnt as green as people think. Wind is very high maintenance and unreliable. Hydro is good but requires large scale dams which can have their own impact on the environment. Geothermal is great if you do it in the right places, like Iceland, but long term maintenance/replacement becomes expensive in most other places. Coal is cheap but dirty. Natural gas is one of the best options in my opinion, as it is both fairly cheap, and has a relatively low impact on the environment. It certainly produces some CO2 but is a lot better then most options. There are other options too I'm sure but I think I hit most of the big ones. My point is, every form of energy has its pros and cons. I think if we compare those pros and cons, nuclear energy, while admitting having one of the largest cons, but only in the case of a big accident, which can be mitigated through proper precautions, redundancy, and security, in which case, it suddenly, in my humble opinion, becomes the best option.
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