March 9, 2012

Blackout in the grocery store

Maxx Value food store opened in my neighborhood recently, to a fair amount of neighborhood concern.
The previous tenant, Lucky Foods, is a union shop and the new one isn't.
That is a topic for another day.
People also wondered about selection, price and upkeep of the outside of the store.

The outside was repainted, the parking lot repaved with recycled asphalt, and the place is pretty spiffy inside. Prices looked good.

But the neighborhood power went out.
After about five minutes of people quietly continuing their shopping, the manager threw us all out of the store.
Now, I have waited out afternoon power outages in Colorado, where summer afternoon storms can knock power out with regularity.
I've never been told to leave, but mangers have suggested coming back in 45 minutes.

As we all walked out, probably 45 to 52 people, the manager kept saying, yes we need a generator.
Having a back up generator with cold food is a great idea.
But locally distributed energy, hosted on the grocery store property, would be a better insurance policy.
The host could get all the power in an outage (written into the host and subscriber contract) and subscribers would get some credit if the outage went on for several hours.

Community solar gardens can be reality in your neighborhood.
In California, SB 843 opens the doors to this locally distributed electricity.
Call your senator and representative and ask them to vote for 843.

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