When disaster hits, solar power beats coal

Image source: https://www.apnews.com/e305e492a0fc4567bdc4c7e2b4475297

Charlotte Shows How to Beat Flooding

When the remnants of Hurricane Florence settled over Charlotte during the weekend of Sept. 15, drenching the flood-prone city with a near-record amount of rain, Justin Parmenter felt one thing above all else: relief. A seventh-grade English teacher with two young children, Parmenter used to be one of the thousands of people living along Charlotte’s many creeks, which regularly top their banks. His house, six miles and a world away from the gleaming, hill-top towers downtown, stood on a low patch of land next to Briar Creek, whose waters constantly reached his property, ruining his appliances and eventually wrecking two of his cars…


When disaster hits, solar power beats coal

Within two weeks after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, Richard Birt, a Las Vegas fire captain, flew to San Juan on what would be the first of many missions to try to get the island’s 96 fire stations up and running — not by fixing the problematical grid but by using solar power.

With the encouragement of San Juan fire chief Alberto Cruz Albarrán, logistical help from San Juan firefighters, and donated equipment from the company Sunrun, within a day-and-a-half a team outfitted the flat roofs of the fire department in Barrio Obrero — one of the poorer neighborhoods in San Juan — with solar panels. The panels and connected battery meant the station could be taken off the downed grid to run the most critical equipment including its 24-hour watch office that…


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