Rebuilding the Electric Grid After Hurricane Maria

October 10, 2017 | Lynn Abramson, President, Clean Energy Business Network

Request for CEBN Member Comments

Two weeks after Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico, 95% of residents are still without power.  Rescue efforts, communications, fresh water supplies, and healthcare have all been impacted—and restoring power may take months. In the next few weeks, Congress will be pulling together one or more disaster relief packages to assist communities impacted by recent hurricanes. The most urgent need is to restore power quickly.  One challenge is that federal guidelines require that disaster funds be used to rebuild infrastructure similar to what previously existed. However, there may be an opportunity to rebuild the grid in a more reliable, efficient way that can protect communities from future outages.  Expertise from the private sector may be able to help inform these strategies.

Do you have ideas for reliable and efficient technology solutions to address the post-hurricane rebuilding effort? Please email us at with a few SHORT bullets on your suggestions. Feel free to include a link to any relevant case studies.

As we track this issue we’ll look for opportunities to weigh in with policymakers on CEBN members’ suggestions. These are just a handful of the ideas that have been reported in the news so far:

The CEBN also recently aired a podcast episode highlighting six members with clean and reliable energy solutions: Powering Through the Storm (9.21.17).  Add your voice to this critical conversation. Not a CEBN member yet but want to contribute? Consider joining our network here. Follow @CleanEnergyBiz on Facebook, and connect via LinkedIn to keep up with the CEBN. Follow @L_Abramson on Twitter to hear more from Lynn.


The Clean Energy Business Network (CEBN) works to advance the clean energy economy through policy, public education, and business support for small- and medium-size energy companies. Started in 2009 by The Pew Charitable Trusts, the CEBN is now a small business division of the Business Council for Sustainable Energy. The CEBN represents 3,000+ business leaders across all 50 U.S. states working with a broad range of clean energy and transportation technologies.