In late September Hurricane Maria knocked out power to all of Puerto Rico’s 3.4 million people. In January, 35% remain with out power. That’s over 1.19 million people who have been without power for months.
Most people are not equipped to handle a power loss for a week. They’d lose the food in their refrigerator and quickly burn through any canned and dry foods they have.
Without access to stored water, survivors would be dependent on handouts from governments or NGOs to keep them alive. That’s not a position you want to be in with your family. Watch the video below to see people, American citizens, queuing up for water and food. They have been forced to live for months without power, in the midst of trying to rebuild every other aspect of their lives.
To help mend Puerto Rico’s broken power infrastructure, the government is calling for private investment. The island’s leaders plan to sell the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority to a private company with hopes that new investment and expertise can help prevent such a tragedy from happening again.
Daniel Bases reports at Reuters:
“The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority has become a heavy burden on our people, who are now hostage to its poor service and high cost,” Governor Ricardo Rossello said in a statement. “What we know today as the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority does not work and cannot continue to operate like this.”
Less than 64 percent of homes and businesses are receiving power, according to the latest data from the U.S. Department of Energy. PREPA had promised that most of the island would have power by the end of December. The new plan calls for 30 percent of power generation to be from renewable sources.
Rossello described how the process for breaking up the company would occur in three phases, calling it a move toward a “consumer-centered model.”
Read more here.
Traumatized Puerto Ricans see uncertain, insecure future
Dark, desperate life without power in Puerto Rico
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