Power Shift

Power Shift


The sun was still shining when Marcia McWilliams lost power in her New Orleans East home. She had been cooking steaks on her stovetop on Sunday, August 29th, just before Hurricane Ida would tear through the city, and was planning to hunker down in her two-story house with her husband, elderly uncle, and granddaughter. But the blackout had arrived early. Up and down the block, neighbors ventured outside to check in with each other. “We’re all looking at each other like, ‘What’s going on?’ The sun was shining!” McWilliams says.

An aging network of power lines connects McWilliams’ home and her neighbors’ to energy sources outside of the city. Ida’s hurricane-force winds started severing those connections soon after the storm made landfall…

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