Thursday, August 02, 2012
By: J. D. Heyes
[NaturalNews] India, unique in many ways, is now known for something else: the world’s largest power outage.
About 670 million of the country’s one billion people were left without power this week when three of the country’s power grids failed in rapid succession. The outage, which lasted hours, forced businesses, hospitals and public buildings to rely on back-up generators.
Needless to say, the outage infuriated – and embarrassed – most Indians, but many reportedly took the mishap in stride, simply because losing power (though not nearly on as wide a scale) is a fairly common occurrence in this would-be Asian powerhouse that is trying to obtain first-world status, if only it had enough reliable electricity to do so.
Though businesses, factories and airports relied on generators, some households had to rely on backup systems that were powered by truck batteries, The Associated Press reported. But hundreds of millions of the nation’s poor weren’t really affected, since they had no electricity in the first place.
No big deal – but yet, it is a big deal
Some Indians – used to such inconveniences we Americans would never tolerate – took the situation in stride.
“The blackout might have been huge, but it wasn’t unbearably long,” Satish, owner of a coffee and juice shop in central Delhi, told AP. “It was just as bad as any other five-hour power cut. We just used a generator while the light was out, and it was work as usual.”
The huge outages are becoming even more common than normal, however. The massive outage was the second record-breaking outage in as many days; the country’s northern power grid failed on Monday, which left about 370 million people without power for most of the hot, sweltering day. That collapse was blamed on Indian states which apparently drew more than their power allotment (can you imagine such an allotment system going over very well in the U.S.?).
The following day, the northern grid collapsed once more, officials said, which led to a cascade of failures on subsequent grids in the east and northeast, robbing 20 of India’s 28 states of power.
“I can understand this happening once in a while but how can one allow such a thing to happen two days in a row?” frustrated shop worker Anu Chopra, 21, told the BBC. “It just shows our infrastructure is in a complete mess. There is no transparency and no accountability whatsoever.”