Imagine a society with no fear of power outages, where a large-scale American Blackout could never occur. Could renewable energy be the answer?
Built in the 19th century, our nation’s wooden poles and power wires are long overdue for a technologically-minded upgrade. Our nation distributes power from power plants and other large centralized sources across a sprawling grid, causing a number of large-scale power failures throughout history.
But some nations have learned better. Germany, which experienced a massive power failure in 2006, is considering shifting to a power system of the future, a decentralized “smart grid” that will obtain much of its power from local, renewable energy sources such as solar panels and wind turbines. A decentralized grid system, powered by the country’s renewable energy, could potentially protect the U.S. against further catastrophic blackouts.
Is this “smart grid” the right option for the United States? Experts believe in its potential. “A more diversified supply with more distributed generation inherently helps reduce vulnerability,” said Mike Jacobs, a senior energy analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists. Joel Gordes, electrical power research director for the anti-cyber terrorism organization U.S. Cyber Consequences Unit, said that such a decentralized grid “could carry benefits not only for protecting us to a certain degree from cyber-attacks but also providing power during any number of natural hazards.”
For now, a national power failure is a very real possibility. This nightmarish situation is brought to life by American Blackout, which explores the catastrophic consequences of a cyber attack that takes out the nation’s power for ten days.
Watch the world premiere event of American Blackout on Sunday, October 27 at 9P.