Some Californians Are Buying Gas-Powered Generators To Power Electric Vehicles During Blackouts

From The Daily Caller

Tesla Warns Californian Customers To Keep A Full Charge Ahead Of Roving Blackouts. Some buying

Daily Caller News Foundation logo

Chris White Tech Reporter

October 10, 2019 12:22 PM ET

Some electric vehicle owners in California are resorting to using gasoline power as the state’s power utility employs roving blackouts to avoid potential wildfires.

Tesla warned its customers Wednesday to be aware of the problems and fully energize their vehicles instead of relying on half-power. Two electric vehicle owners in the state say they are not taking any chances and will rely on gas power to run their cars if they lose power.

California’s public utility Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) begins a days-long power shutoff to curb the risk of wildfires.

“At least in the worst-case scenario I have a gas-based generator for my house and for possible charging of my car,” Chad Dunbar, a resident of Petaluma, Calif. who works in IT in local government, told The Washington Post Wednesday night. His power was still on as of Wednesday, WaPo noted.

Dunbar bought gasoline-powered generators to charge his Tesla Model 3 in case of an emergency. He fully charged his vehicle Tuesday night ahead of the planned blackouts. (RELATED: Parts Of California Go Dark To Curb Wildfire Risk)

“A utility company in your area announced they may turn off power in some areas of Northern California beginning October 9 as part of public safety power shut-offs, which may affect power to charging options,” a message from Tesla read, according to Twitter posts from customers. “We recommend charging your Tesla to 100% today to ensure your drive remains uninterrupted.”

The electric vehicle company has not yet responded to the Daily Caller News Foundation for comment.

Zlatko Unger, 35, of Redwood City looked up the availability of Tesla charger stations after he got the company’s warning, telling reporters that the station he normally uses was busier than usual.

Unger said he has a backup plan if there is a catastrophe. He would use his Kia Niro plug-in hybrid, which can shift to gasoline power once the electric battery is depleted. “If everything went haywire, we would opt to use the hybrid instead,” he said.

Power went out for 513,000 northern California homes and businesses Wednesday morning, USA Today reported. Roughly 234,000 customers were expected to lose power later Wednesday afternoon, with another 42,000 people going dark, the outlet reported.

PG&E uses a mixture of natural gas, hydroelectric energy, and nuclear energy to power homes across northern California.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Janice Moore
October 11, 2019 2:03 pm


Reply to  Janice Moore
October 11, 2019 3:21 pm

We knew this was coming, didn’t we? It was just a matter of time. Have fun, Janice.


Janice Moore
Reply to  Bob Tisdale
October 11, 2019 3:39 pm

Hi, Bob 🙂

Well… not exactly having fun these days… For the past 16 months or so, I have been, essentially, camping and it is getting kind of cold (and I have always HATED camping — I just do day hikes in the mountains). But, I will keep your kind wishes in mind for someday… cuz, BOY, do I like to have FUN! 🙂

At least I get a good laugh once in awhile, thanks to the “liberals.”

Hope all is well with you,


jo blo
Reply to  Bob Tisdale
October 11, 2019 10:10 pm

Don’t forget to buy several large gas cans – avoid making that long drive to a town that has electricity for gas pumps very often.

– a good safe place to store your pile of gas cans: nowhere near anything.

Tom Johnson
Reply to  jo blo
October 12, 2019 5:05 am

Before buying any gas cans, I would suggest that the owners first should calculate the Tesla’s “gasoline fuel economy” – miles driven per gallon of gasoline burned in the generator. I suspect that unless a gas station with electricity is situated quite close to the Tesla, there would not be enough room in the Tesla to carry all the gas cans required to keep it running normally during the outage.

Nicholas McGinley
Reply to  Bob Tisdale
October 12, 2019 3:50 pm

Several days ago I made this comment:

which included the following remark:
“Those of us who live where power has been cut off due to storms knocking out power lines and other power transmission and distribution infrastructure know how incredibly disruptive and awful it is not to have power.
We simply can not do without it and proceed with our lives as if it is not happening.
In the mean time, I am looking at the stock price of the companies that manufacture, sell, and install home generators. they typically spike when large hurricanes and ice storms cause or are expected to cause widespread outages…but this is different.”

I saw this coming from a mile away.

Reply to  Bob Tisdale
October 12, 2019 4:27 pm

My guess is the running costs and pollution from a Tesla is far below any other car even if they do have to charge from a gas generator for a couple of days.

Reply to  Owen
October 13, 2019 10:08 pm

Does your rinning costs guess factor in the higher purchase price of the Tesla plus the purchase price of the generator?

Reply to  Analitik
October 14, 2019 2:53 pm

Yes, A Tesla Model 3 will typically have the same total cost of ownership as a Camry or Accord over a 5 year period. After that the Tesla quickly becomes cheaper than the ICE car. We have a ’17 Accord Hybrid. For that, with the higher purchase price of the hybrid compared to the ICE Accord, it is probably more like 3 years even though the Accord Hybrid is very economical. The Model 3 was not available when we bought it.
Not calculated in that is the fact that Teslas hold their second hand value much better than other cars.

Reply to  Owen
October 14, 2019 5:01 am

Actually, given the relatively low efficiency of a small gas powered generator compared to a large power plant and the losses from charge efficiency of the batteries your running costs will be higher. Pollution too. Small gas engines aren’t the cleanest either.

A propane of natural gas powered generator would likely be cleaner.

Reply to  VesEng
October 14, 2019 5:31 pm

Yes, higher running costs for a couple of days. Much lower running costs the rest of the year.

Reply to  Janice Moore
October 11, 2019 5:08 pm

Hi Janice!
Welcome back!

Janice Moore
Reply to  MonnaM
October 11, 2019 6:41 pm

Hi, Monna 🙂

Good to see you. Hope all is well.

Take care, up there,


October 11, 2019 2:12 pm

So let’s see when the wind blows all electricity is turned off due to fire risks. So remind me why do they want wind power again? /sarc

Reply to  Davidq
October 11, 2019 4:14 pm

What of PG&E kept up with keeping trees from getting too close to their power equipment? Where I live, the electric utility trims trees that grow too close to power lines.

Reply to  Donald L. Klipstein
October 11, 2019 9:33 pm

Well Donald that requires permits to actually cut OH MY GAWD TREES. Then there is the land access permits and the crossing of the creek permits and the requirement for the proper easement permit and the removal of the brush permit from public lands and the disposal of the cut brush permit.

When I worked for a pipeline company supplying gas to customers we would brush the right of way every 3 to 5 years under a “normal world”. Now we have to plan for three to five years just to get the permits all in order. Then after all that we had on over zealous environmental officer shut down our work crews because we crossed a creek and when we tried to show him the permit he ran our whole crew off the public land and tried to charge us. Two weeks later it turned out this Bozo either did not get the email or he did not read it. In that three ring binder FULL of permits for that brushing season the proper permit was in there and the proper access had been granted to cross that creek.

Reply to  Donald L. Klipstein
October 11, 2019 9:48 pm

You need to read the idiotic green laws preventing clearing of trees and brush in California. Kafka has nothing on them.

Reply to  William
October 12, 2019 4:16 am

A few years ago I was returning a rent car at LAX. All the agencies were in the same area but I didn’t see the sign for mine. I finally stumbled upon it by accident. I advised the person working the counter that they should put up a sign. They said they did but it was now obstructed by a tree limb. I laughed and suggested they should cut the tree limb. They said they applied for a permit to cut it but the permit was denied. Common Sense simply isn’t as common as it used to be. California is quickly becoming a third world country. And they are moving that way voluntarily.

Reply to  William
October 12, 2019 8:07 pm

As for “You need to read the idiotic green laws preventing clearing of trees and brush in California”: Does this include trimming trees without removing them? Where I live and where I work, the local electric utility is free to trim trees around their power lines. The biggest complaint I hear is that the electric utility trims trees to an ugly stubby state so that they can do that job less frequently.

michael hart
Reply to  Donald L. Klipstein
October 12, 2019 5:04 am

Yes, there’s something wrong with a state that deprives humans of the benefits of electricity because other humans don’t want to manage the trees properly. Priorities back asswards. Much of the world still cuts trees down because they don’t have access to electricity.

Reply to  michael hart
October 12, 2019 10:17 am

Deforestation is a big result of insufficient energy for the local population. Here is an image of the island of Hispaniola:

Anyone want to guess where the border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic lies?
(hint: Haiti is poorer)
Just wait til some jackass suggests that wood burning fireplaces are more environmentally friendly than fossil fuels…wait isn’t that what’s being done in the UK?

Reply to  Rocketscientist
October 13, 2019 9:25 am

Yes, in the UK wood burners are lowering the air quality in the cities and the problem is being blamed on diesel cars.

Reply to  Donald L. Klipstein
October 12, 2019 3:31 pm

CPUC (California Public Utilities Commission) sets a standard of a minimum of 10 feet of clearance. As you probably realize, you want a LOT more than that when you trim, so the trees can grow for a few years, approach 10 feet, then get trimmed again.

However, here in CA, enivronmental whackos sue to make the cut NO MORE than 10 feet, on the justification that the rules say a minimum of 10 feet, and the statement that the utility should just trim more often (like monthly). Oh, and the utility can’t increase its prices either to allow more frequent trimming.

Reply to  Davidq
October 11, 2019 9:49 pm

They are just practicing and getting ready for the implementation of rolling black outs to suppress global warming….

Reply to  Davidq
October 11, 2019 10:56 pm

I sense that this ‘preventing forest fires’ bit is a cover-up for the fact that they cannot actually supply the amount of energy needed at certain times with the absurdly inefficient sources that have been mandated by what is now essentially a communist government.

They are and will blame fake ‘global warming’ on the very problem they have created.

October 11, 2019 2:12 pm

I thought CA purchased power from WA and OR too?

Reply to  Derg
October 11, 2019 2:37 pm

Can’t get it to the people when the distribution lines are shut off to decrease the fire risk.

Reply to  Stephana
October 11, 2019 7:51 pm

California’s public utility Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) begins a days-long power shutoff to curb the risk of wildfires.

Trying to avoid getting sued maybe ?

What the hell is the logic behind this? Cut power on windy days in case the poorly maintained power lines come down? WTF is going on here.

Dreaming of going to Mars but can’t even organise a reliable transmission line ?

This is insane.

richard hern
Reply to  Stephana
October 11, 2019 10:08 pm

Transmission Lines for power purchased out of state. And the State of Kalifornia has restricted tree trimming along Transmission Line ( which are under FERC control). FERC needs to step up and over rule Kalifornia on Transmission Lines.

Bryan A
Reply to  Derg
October 11, 2019 2:41 pm

I do know that sometimes they Pay Arizona utilities to take the surplus power from renewable sources.

Reply to  Bryan A
October 11, 2019 2:55 pm

And Mexico

Reply to  Bryan A
October 11, 2019 9:13 pm

Bryan A,

That is true and, other times, they pay Az. for power from the Yuma nuclear plant when the wind doesn’t blow or, blows so much they must shut windmills down or, when the sun doesn’t shine for solar.
It does make one wonder why they don’t just use nuclear themselves.

Reply to  KcTaz
October 11, 2019 10:39 pm

The Green religion. Nuclear is Bad. They have an in-state nuclear plant, they’ve accelerated its retirement. Idiots.

October 11, 2019 2:13 pm

I used to live in an area with frequent prolonged Summer blackouts, gas station pumps don’t work when they have no power, so even gasoline only buys you a few extra days, unless you are prepared to risk having a crazy amount of gasoline in your home.

If you do plan to store gasoline long term be aware you have to add biocide / stabiliser, to stop fungus from growing in the gasoline and messing up your generator. You can usually buy the chemicals you need at chandlers / boat suppliers.

Pop Piasa
Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 11, 2019 5:50 pm

Eric, in the US it’s called Stabil, or Seafoam. Gasoline has a terrible shelf life and generators are only used on occasion. If I had a buck for every story I’ve heard of portable gens not starting when needed…

Reply to  Pop Piasa
October 12, 2019 4:46 pm

The worst thing for small engines is the methanol they add, followed by the other additives that random governmental agencies insist upon.

My generator starts ok, but I do make sure to run it every couple of weeks, for at least half an hour on a decent load. And when shutting down, turn off the gas tap and let it run dry.

My generator is almost 20 years old, and still starts every time.
Last serious use was a week ago when some bozo drove off the road and took out an electricity pole carrying the supply to 3/4 of the town.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 11, 2019 8:29 pm

Same problem with diesel too.

Reply to  Patrick MJD
October 11, 2019 10:49 pm

This is why off-grid homesteads in my state use propane. Multi-hundred pound tanks, filled once or twice a year.

Reply to  LarryD
October 12, 2019 12:29 pm

Yep, I have a whole house 20 kw propane generator for those few days without sunshine in my off-grid location.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
October 12, 2019 12:47 am

But the fuel stored in my car’s tank is a great reassurance, allowing short and emergency trips for many weeks in the event of prolonged blackouts. A major reason for me not going electric.

Reply to  climanrecon
October 12, 2019 3:19 am

Juan Browne has an excellent blog. This is his take on the topic:

Note that he was warned about using 100/130 AvGas in generators because they run hot. If you have access to it, you must enlarge the jet in the carby to stop it running lean and burning valves.

BTW There is a container load of these heading your way:comment image

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Hanrahan
October 12, 2019 6:34 am

I bet if some car manufacturer offered a gasoline/electric hybrid that was designed to power your home during an electrical outage, they would be selling like hotcakes in California.

Heck, I would buy one myself, and I don’t live in California.

I don’t think it would take much to modifiy a hybrid to power a home.

The benefits would be a very quiet generator that requires nothing more than standard maintenance.

Some automobiles already supply a 120-volt plug-in connector, so some enterprising person just needs to figure out how to add a couple of more circuits and the electric generator in your hybrid can power your home.

Reply to  Tom Abbott
October 14, 2019 5:43 pm

You can already do that with most electric vehicles. Even my ’13 Volt will run a fridge and some lights for several days.

October 11, 2019 2:22 pm

The circle will be beautifully complete when we have eco-friendly oil companies powering their rigs with solar and wind.

Bryan A
Reply to  Hugh
October 11, 2019 2:43 pm

Offshore Wind??

The Norvejun
Reply to  Hugh
October 11, 2019 3:56 pm

Then the circle is completed. Equinor (statoil) are building offshore wind turbines to power their northsea riggs. The Hywind Tampen windfarm they are building will supply electric power to the Snorre and Gullfaks oil platforms., and it is even more crazy than it sounds. It will cost about half a billion $, 90% of which are public founding. The oil company get subsidies to build wind generators to generate free, zero emission power so that they can pump up oil. It is beautiful beyond belief.
In norwegian:

Pop Piasa
Reply to  The Norvejun
October 11, 2019 5:57 pm

Wow, half a billion in public funding to do what? Sounds bountiful beyond belief (for somebody, anyway). Glad that’s not where I live.

Reply to  The Norvejun
October 11, 2019 6:18 pm

I’m done1

Bruce Cobb
October 11, 2019 2:30 pm

Imagine a gas-powered generator, and how inefficient it is at producing electricity. That’s probably at least twice the carbon (probably more), and then imagine the actual pollutants spewed by said generators. Not to mention the noise! Then imagine thousands, nay tens of thousands of them running. Not saving the planet so much now, are we?

Reply to  Bruce Cobb
October 11, 2019 5:00 pm

Not to worry, each has a catalytic converters and a carbon capture attachment.


Crispin in Waterloo but really in Beijing
Reply to  JohnWho
October 11, 2019 9:32 pm

Hang on JohnWho

If the purpose of turning off the electricity is to save the trees, then running a generator burning gasoline to keep things going is fine. The CO2 capture mechanism is the trees, each of which enhances its growth by about another 1% per year due to rising CO2 fertilization.

I am writing a report on how that works: more CO2, more trees, reduces the fNRB value, unless you burn them, of course.

So the generators are actually biomass enhancement devices that happen to produce a bit of electricity on the side. Though it’s not much, it’s a shame to waste it so put it into an expensive vehicle storage battery and use it for domestic travel.

I can’t see a downside.

Mickey Reno
Reply to  JohnWho
October 12, 2019 7:50 am

Don’t even joke about such things. Someone in the California State Legislature might see it.

Reply to  Bruce Cobb
October 11, 2019 6:32 pm

Hahahahahahahaha. Problem is gas pumps don’t work either. Hahahahahahahaha

Eventually someone will die as a result of this disaster.

Reply to  Mark
October 11, 2019 9:50 pm

Takes a tiny Honda to produce the few hundred watts to run a gas pump. Tesla Superchargers use 250 kw for each charging station. VERY different.

Reply to  Mark
October 11, 2019 10:12 pm

Someone has. A 60 yr. old man using an oxygen concentrator died about 12 minutes after they shut off the power.
However, no cause of death has been determined. He should have had E-tanks for back up and for travel so, not sure that the power outage caused it unless he was very unprepared. People on home ventilators would be in serious trouble if power goes out but, again, one would hope they have backup power as power can go out any time..

Reply to  KcTaz
October 11, 2019 10:14 pm

Oops, forgot the link.

Man on oxygen dies minutes after power shutdown: fire official
The Associated PressOct 11, 2019

Reply to  KcTaz
October 12, 2019 8:28 am

He did not make to his battery backup in time

Stephan Fuelling
Reply to  KcTaz
October 15, 2019 2:23 pm

Or the following (future) headline: “50 people died in their sleep when their CPAP machines stopped working during electric power shutdown.”

Nicholas McGinley
Reply to  Mark
October 12, 2019 3:55 pm

Florida mandated generators be installed in all gas stations after the disastrous events in this state of 2004.
Many people had generators, many gas stations had gas, but almost zero gas stations had a generator, meaning there was no way to sell the gas they had, even after storms had passed the roads were cleared.
Around the same time, the cost of 5 gallon gas cans went from a couple of dollars to over $20.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  Bruce Cobb
October 11, 2019 8:30 pm

You only have to go to Lagos in Nigeria to see what that actually looks, smells and sounds like.

Paul Penrose
October 11, 2019 2:32 pm

It’s almost like living in a third world country. What a disaster you are California. And the crazies there want the rest of us to emulate them. No thank you.

October 11, 2019 2:35 pm

If you think blackouts are going to be a fact of life, I suggest that a diesel generator is a much better buy. Some cheap gas generators need an oil change every eight hours. Also, the cheap ones don’t last that long. Diesels can run a very long time without servicing. link That said, the ones I was responsible for many years ago were quite noisy and unpleasant. I’m sure one of them was actively trying to kill me. Do they even sell diesel generators with crank start any more? If they do, don’t get one of those.

I would be way more comfortable with a couple of hundred gallons of diesel on my property than even a much smaller quantity of gasoline.

Reply to  commieBob
October 11, 2019 9:36 pm

The newer stand by generators for the home have the option of using natural gas (if you are tied to the gas utility) or propane if you are not. The down grade in performance is 3% to 5% running those types of fuels instead of gasoline.

JimH in CA
Reply to  commieBob
October 11, 2019 9:43 pm

The preferred generator here in the NorCal foothills is to use one that runs on propane. A number of manufacturers sell them with an automatic transfer switch, so when the power goes off, the generator is automatically started and the house switch over. When the power is restored, the process reverses.
We all have large tanks of 250 to 500 gallons, and the propane suppliers deliver with a phone call.
Over the last 3 days my generator used 1/2 gal per hour supplying a kw of load, and intermittently 3-4 kw when the well pump ran or the septic system needed to run. So I can run for 2-3 weeks without thinking of fuel.

As far as using gasoline, I buy aviation 100LL for my 2 cycle tools. It has a ‘shelf’ life of 1 yr without degrading. Also , since there is no ethanol, it doesn’t destroy the plastic fuel lines. I’ve not had any problems starting any tool after 6 months on non-use.

Crispin in Waterloo but really in Beijing
Reply to  commieBob
October 11, 2019 10:08 pm


Waterloo has piped gas so generators are connected directly to the yellow pipe. When the power drops the Jenny kicks in and a contactor kicks over to disconnect the mains until it comes back.

It takes a long time to draw down the gas main in the absence of power. Natural gas engines are clean burning and need less maintenance. They can run on propane too if necessary. And butane. And producer gas from a hot canister of charcoal. Imagine a charcoal-powered Tesla. That’s rich.

Reply to  commieBob
October 12, 2019 5:47 am

Why buy a gas generator, when most people already have one sitting in their driveway or garage? Yes it is 12 v dc, but a 2000 watt or even a 3000 watt inverter will be good for most things(and less that $200), not cooking or heating or some sensitive electronics(if the inverter says modified sine wave). Refrigerator,computer and some lights are ok. Small propane camping stove is good for occasional cooking.

Reply to  Pat
October 12, 2019 9:23 am

That’s true. If you have a modern furnace, such an inverter will power that.

The thing to watch out for is the capacity of the car’s alternator. link If you’re powering a 1000 watt load, you will probably have to run the car continuously.

The other thing is the capacity of the battery. It’s probably not going to give you 1 kWh (1000 watt hours). If you drain it flat, you won’t be able to start the car again.

The inverters are relatively cheap. Watch out though. Your furnace is probably full of electronics. Try to get an inverter that gives a decent imitation of a sine wave.

Reply to  commieBob
October 16, 2019 8:52 am

You can buy a ready made kit to put a 1500W alternator in a Chevy Volt or cobble your own together. It’ll run a fridge, TV and some lights etc. for a few days on the 13kW Li-Ion battery in the car. I’m sure similar kits are available for a lot of electric vehicles and will be a lot more economical than a gas car as the gas engine uses a lot of energy simply to keep itself turning.

October 11, 2019 2:37 pm


J Mac
October 11, 2019 2:45 pm

reGretable Thunberg: “How Dare You!”

Rudolf Huber
October 11, 2019 2:55 pm

Ain’t that nuts? Diesel Teslas by proxy.

October 11, 2019 3:05 pm

Here’s pro tip for Californians – go long on bicycle futures.

Clarky of Oz
Reply to  Mr.
October 11, 2019 6:23 pm

Or mules

Reply to  Clarky of Oz
October 11, 2019 6:46 pm

Or Uber Rickshaw

October 11, 2019 3:10 pm

LOL is not appropriate. It’s a disaster. Gas is very hard to find. Many gas stations have extremely long lines. People are trying to get gas for their generators and cars. The generators are 99% for their freezers. There are not enough generators. Many existing generators turn out to not work. Markets are giving away frozen food that is about to spoil. It’s not pretty. Many millions of dollars are being lost by normal people like you and me. See the blancolirio channel on youtube for a very good rundown.

Flight Level
October 11, 2019 3:15 pm

Electric mobility: -The best way to paralyze a nation with a few mouse clicks.

Reply to  Flight Level
October 11, 2019 6:03 pm


Reply to  Flight Level
October 11, 2019 7:56 pm

Exactly, that is why they want to force electric vehicles. Population control !

Reply to  Greg
October 12, 2019 3:23 am

More like a population explosion.
Had a blackout after the last cyclone and had to talk to my wife. Seems she is a nice lady. 🙂

But you DO go to bed early.

max hugoson
October 11, 2019 3:21 pm


October 11, 2019 3:26 pm

There must be a lawyer somewhere that can file a class action. What about the DOJ Civil Rights Division?

October 11, 2019 3:30 pm

So hopefully this will wake a few people up.

October 11, 2019 3:30 pm

The Green illusion was always a manifestation of shared/shifted responsibility in response to political climate change and progressed under a blanket of privacy.

Jan de Jong
October 11, 2019 3:31 pm

Put a trailer with a generator behind your Tesla and you can go anywhere. A DIY hybrid!

Carl Friis-Hansen
October 11, 2019 3:39 pm

The article reminds me of Jeremy Clarkson, or was it “Hamster” or “Captain Slow”, in Top-Gear, when they build a battery vehicle, but would make sure not to run out of juice, so put a small extremely noisy diesel generator behind the front seats. The exhaust was piped up through the roof. I guess they had a peek inside a good old diesel electric locomotive. In the end the “Stick” died when testing it on the track, because the diesel’s exhaust broke during the race for the slowest time ever.

Geoff Sherrington
October 11, 2019 3:53 pm

The mains electricity is turned off to reduce the fire risk.
Electric car owners fire up portable generators here and there. What is the fire risk from the generator method? Is it greater than or less than the risk from transmission lines in the wind? Geoff S

Reply to  Geoff Sherrington
October 11, 2019 4:42 pm

I would think that only an idiot would let their generator burn down their home and neighborhood. Any manufacturer who sold a genset in the past decade or so that could start a nearby fire would have been sued out of business.

Though the fact that petroleum burns may be all that is needed to spread another Zohnerism.

Reply to  AWG
October 11, 2019 9:22 pm

A smoker flicking a cigarette into combustible brush in high winds is all it takes.

Gatlinburg TN suffered major fires a few years ago.

Better management of underbrush and trees seems to be the answer. That requires private property and a legal system.

October 11, 2019 3:58 pm

Do you remember a few years ago when some clever Spaniards used diesel powered generators to fire up WW II antiaircraft searchlights which they would shine on solar panels to generate “solar” electricity all night long which would get them substantial government subsidies.

Gunga Din
October 11, 2019 4:09 pm

Any bets that the next brilliant CA law will be to demand all gas generators be replaced with battery powered generators?

Hmmm … maybe an idea for a spoof petition or poll?

ferd berple
Reply to  Gunga Din
October 11, 2019 5:47 pm
October 11, 2019 4:30 pm

Second day.
Cell phones should be out of power. Eyes downward phone addicts should be going into withdrawal.

A couple more days and they’ll be ready to rethink their belief of a world without fossil fuels.

Reply to  ATheoK
October 11, 2019 8:12 pm

Cell phones mostly draw power from their batteries at an average rate of half a watt to a watt. Make that a couple watts for heavy use. This means power needed to charge the phone’s battery is about half a watt to a watt or two, averaged over a day, a few watts for some heavy users. A solar panel and suitable switchmode buck regulator (a kind of DC to DC converter) that can fit in a briefcase is enough to meet the demands of most cellphones, even with a multiple charges power pack.

Reply to  Donald L. Klipstein
October 11, 2019 9:28 pm

Exactly zero percent of the people suffering even understand the words you wrote. It seems like gibberish to anyone without a rudimentary understanding of electronics. Many people suffering are pissed that their solar roof arrays won’t work…because they are connected to “the grid” without the ability to switch into an independent node.

Watermelons have become totally disconnected from climate reality. They don’t care about the environment, they just want POWER!

Reply to  ATheoK
October 12, 2019 1:52 pm

Be interesting to see how long the cell tower infrastructure stays up, and how they sustain power.

Interesting challenge for the distributed 5G future, I am guessing that will just crash.

Russ Wood
Reply to  yarpos
October 14, 2019 7:28 am

With the electrical ‘load shedding’ happening in South Africa, combined with simple system breakdowns due to poor maintenance, we’re used to periods of no power. Problem is when power-outs occur in succession, and the batteries in the cell base towers run flat. Apparently the batteries need a couple of days of steady power to charge fully, and if they don’t get it… Also, our local criminals have found that if they STEAL the batteries, they have a market for ‘uninterruptible power’. Either way, bye-bye to 24-hour communications!

October 11, 2019 4:38 pm

I’m curious if it is legal to charge a Tesla from a diesel generator fueled by tax-exempt agricultural fuel.

Reply to  AWG
October 11, 2019 5:26 pm

Interesting question. I don’t see how it could be illegal, but they would probably find a way.

Abolition Man
Reply to  icisil
October 11, 2019 7:26 pm

Illegal to use ag diesel in non-ag uses. You can’t use ag diesel for for home genset either. Worked on a number of estates in Woodside, CA area that installed whole house backup gen sets. No one ever asked about ag diesel, but of course it was in Woodside!$$$$$$$$

Reply to  AWG
October 11, 2019 6:27 pm

I suspect that the set of farmers owning Teslas is empty.

J Mac
Reply to  commieBob
October 11, 2019 6:52 pm

‘Organic’ farmers fit well into the virtue signalling set.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  AWG
October 11, 2019 8:34 pm

In the UK, and CA it seems, it is illegal to use red diesel (Agricultural diesel) in non agricultural engines. However, in the UK now it is legal to use used cooking oils in vehicles driven up to 2000 miles p/a. I guess that could be used in a generator.

Interesting here in Australia I started seeing ads on TV for small, domestic gen-sets, about 2 years ago. An American ad, voices dubbed over. I guess that company knows what is coming to Australia in the not too distant future.

October 11, 2019 5:11 pm

The next step in the story would be putting the two-stroke generator on a small trailer.
Towed by the electric car.
Charging while you discharge.

Reply to  Bob Hoye
October 11, 2019 6:35 pm

Brilliant Bob.
This will be a winner in CA.

Nigel Sherratt
Reply to  toorightmate
October 13, 2019 1:58 am
David L. Hagen
October 11, 2019 5:21 pm

Californians demanded and achieved Back to Nature
California’s Dark Ages

Why the progressive paragon is living like it’s 1899. …
Credit Suisse has estimated that long-term contracts with renewable developers cost the utility $2.2 billion annually more than current market power rates.
California Goes Dark, Intentionally
PG&E customers pay among the highest rates in America. But the utility says inspecting all of its 100,000 or so miles of power lines and clearing dangerous trees would require rates to increase by more than 400%.

Roger Knights
Reply to  David L. Hagen
October 12, 2019 3:32 am

“But the utility says inspecting all of its 100,000 or so miles of power lines and clearing dangerous trees would require rates to increase by more than 400%.”

Not if convict labor is used (including parolees).

October 11, 2019 5:30 pm

Hasn’t California banned backup generators yet?

Reply to  Glenn
October 11, 2019 6:10 pm

I hear that’s next on the docket, once they tie up loose ends on violating 2nd amendment rights.

Frederick Michael
October 11, 2019 5:38 pm

Charging from a 30 amp, 240 volt outlet, you get between 14 and 22 miles of travel per hour of charging.

The largest generator you can buy at Home Depot could support this load, but would need to be refilled with gas every hour or so. Imagine trying to completely charge a Tesla overnight.

Reply to  Frederick Michael
October 11, 2019 9:53 pm

Go to youtube and see that Tesla’s don’t like being charged from small generators and will shut down the charging because of changes in frequency and voltage from simple governor controlled generators.

Philip Verslues
October 11, 2019 5:41 pm

The best way to end the insanity is to cut off electricity to California law makers everytime you cut electricity to California’s citizens.

F. Ross
Reply to  Philip Verslues
October 11, 2019 9:03 pm

Precisely the right idea! And especially Gov. Newsom.

Kent Gatewood
October 11, 2019 5:52 pm

Are there air pollution restrictions on home gasoline powered generators in California?

Alec Rawls
October 11, 2019 5:53 pm

That’s what they get for using a combination of “renewables” garbage and NIMBY activism to shut down virtually all expansion of local generating capacity. The power is coming from the desert and from other states, which means it comes over the dangerous fire-prone cross-country distribution lines.

A small Thorium plant or two in every city (with a micro-mini for Paradise) and they would not need the cross-country lines at all. Not only would this get rid of most of the fire risk but it is also the long term solution to grid stability: get rid of the grid. Rely on local generation and only even activate the interconnections for emergency purposes.

But noooooo, CA only wants solar from SW deserts or hydro from WA (as if buying from Bonneville actually affects the amount of hydro used by the nation, when in fact it only raises the price). Eco morons.

October 11, 2019 6:05 pm

You need not turn out the lights when leaving California.

Mark Broderick
October 11, 2019 7:10 pm

“Oxygen-dependent man dies 12 minutes after PG&E cuts power to his home”


October 11, 2019 7:52 pm

This is just the beginning, folks! PG&E got mandated to put in a ton of solar and wind and was mandated to pay top dollar for each. In a couple of years, Diablo Canyon goes dark and with it nearly 10% of the state’s base load.

PG&E got dinged 30 years ago on the Campbell Complex fire when a major transmission line heated up on a hot day when most had their A/C going full-blast and that line dipped to an encroaching tree and 60,000 areas of brush and timber got cooked.

The CPUC knew back then of all the infrastructure issues yet chose to start the conversion to “green” and renewable, but renewable doesn’t include hydro in the state’s definition, so I’m told.

FWIW, the same unaccountable political appointees running the CPUC are the same political “experts” as one would find at CARB, the “inventors” of the CARB-approved gas cans that spill more gas on the ground than they keep out of the environment….

Reply to  Лазо
October 12, 2019 3:06 pm

I got one of those CARB gas cans & while I was at it I also got a regular old fashioned filler spout that was hanging nearby. Replaced the junk part as soon as I got home & have had no problems with spillage. That worked out well because I took the time to read a bunch of reviews when I was looking for a gas can.

October 11, 2019 7:57 pm

Unless I’m wrong, didn’t the power companies request to put the power lines underground but the people thought it was too expensive and the politicians vetoed it? It may be more complicated than my explanation but isn’t that what happened years ago and gets repeated often?

Roger Knights
Reply to  markl
October 12, 2019 3:35 am

“Unless I’m wrong, didn’t the power companies request to put the power lines underground but the people thought it was too expensive and the politicians vetoed it?”

The legislature passed it but His Jeryness vetoed it. That was within the past 12 months, maybe 6 months.

John Robertson
October 11, 2019 9:19 pm

And we thought this was a joke
“Mommy,what did people use for lights before candles?”
Nice to see California leading the way…into darkness.

October 11, 2019 9:51 pm

It serves the voters of California right that they are suffering from voting in these Global Warming Kooks.
This is what happens when you agree with these climate change politicians.
LOL lol HA HA HA HA etc.
But it is too bad that it is northern CA that are having these blackouts. They didn’t vote for the Global warming Kooks like LA and San Fran…. It should be LA that should be having their electric turned off, and San Fran too !!!

October 11, 2019 9:52 pm

So a number of years ago the governor Brown of California made a statement. “Look how much California has reduced its power production emissions compared to our neighboring states.” The truth behind that lie is that the company I worked for installed 185 LARGE Gas turbine generators in sites all along the border of California in those neighboring states to satisfy the increased power demand. PG&E was importing that power across the state lines into California and keeping the emissions in the state of origin. Looks good on paper but just think if these units were located across the state where the power is needed then you could have maybe kept the lights on in more areas and been able to not disrupt the whole northern part of the state to satisfy a lawyers pipe dream.

Just more stupid Left wing environazie tricks.

October 11, 2019 10:40 pm

The last Democrat that messed with our electrical supply got thrown out of office.

October 12, 2019 1:20 am

Juan Browne, an airline pilot who comments on aviation matters, produced a video about the PG&E cuts in Nevada City. Illuminating.

Roger Knights
Reply to  Perry
October 12, 2019 3:50 am

Here’s a tip for the policy-makers or supermarket executives: Require supermarkets to have backup generators to keep their freezers cold.

I suspect owners of homes with solar panels will lobby for an option to disconnect from the grid and operate independently. (Why wsn this option offered from the start?)

Reply to  Roger Knights
October 14, 2019 5:38 am

The option to run independent of the grid will require batteries, controllers, and maintenance. The costs will be much higher and there will be ongoing costs to replace batteries, etc.

Most homeowners will not understand the maintenance requirements and so the systems will become dysfunctional and perhaps unsafe.

Reply to  VesEng
October 14, 2019 7:33 am

You are correct that running appliances from solar requires battery backup. These systems are commonly available from Tesla, Generac and others and require 0 maintenance.
Those that have electric vehicles can also run mission critical appliances from their car. Even my ’13 Volt can run a fridge for a few days.

Michael Jankowski
Reply to  Perry
October 12, 2019 10:09 am

Around 6:30 he mentions city water being a “gravity feed so it’s ok.” Well there has to be some power to deliver the water…doubtful they live off of snowpack melt that flows down to a treatment plant at a high elevation that flows down to the city. And power is required to treat the water…lots of power.

Reply to  Michael Jankowski
October 12, 2019 11:54 am

Nevada City is at the lower edge of the Nevada County Water District, which extends to the Pacific Crest. They generate power from the reservoirs, and there’s no reason they can’t use gravity feed for the western towns. Now up on the crest, they need pumps, but hardly anyone lives there.

William Haas
October 12, 2019 2:51 am

The State of California should install a free solar powered changing station for everyone with an electric car for free in the State of California. I would also like the State of California to give me a free electric car and appropriate solar changing station so that I can help reduce CO2 emissions. The charging station must include a battery that can be used to charge up the electric car during the night. Anything installed on my property I must own free and clear with no added taxes in any form. I cannot afford to pay anything for it but am willing to do my part to reduce fossil fuel usage.

October 12, 2019 3:06 am

Even dumber than the French Shadoks !

Steve Richards
October 12, 2019 6:35 am

Heard on Fox NEws: +++California to legislate against fossil fueled emergency generators. Only renewable emergency generators will be permitted for home use.+++

October 12, 2019 8:42 am

So it begins just as it has in South Australia. They’ll wriggle and squirm and use all the weasel words they can to avoid the blame for their lunar prescriptions but when the lights go out the game is up. Just a matter of time as you can’t hide the truth forever. Transport and electricity running on solar wind and batteries is pure fantasy from technical and economic illiterates.

Little shampoo bottles in hotels and motels the burning issue of the day eh? Nero fiddling while Rome burns. There’s a fallacy of composition that we can all sue our communal power supplier anymore than we can sue our own Govt.

Chris Hoff
October 12, 2019 10:36 am

For puttering around town a flex-fuel hybrid is probably the best bet for contingencies. I’m hoping Liquid Piston’s rotary design becomes a success, that would make for an even better hybrid vehicle.

October 12, 2019 12:02 pm

Nevada City is at the lower edge of the Nevada County Water District, which extends to the Pacific Crest. They generate power from the reservoirs, and there’s no reason they can’t use gravity feed for the western towns. Now up on the crest, they need pumps, but hardly anyone lives there.

October 12, 2019 12:11 pm

An old high school friend of mine still living in the foothills of the Cascades bought and installed a 20kw gas generator earlier this year when it was evident that PG and E was going to shut off power under certain conditions. He has cruised through the many power outages. Just what is the job of PG and E if it is not to provide cheap, Reliable, I mean Reliable. Er hum, Reliable power to its customers?

Nicholas McGinley
October 12, 2019 3:07 pm

In other news, a video has turned up showing that a smoldering garbage truck was the cause of at least one major fire in California.
Of course this has grave implications, as it now appears that, going forwards, all waste removal activity will cease during fire weather events to avoid a repeat.
Next up: Cars can cause fires…

October 13, 2019 3:19 am

First, let me qualify: I am neither pro nor anti-EV. I am an engineer who has had more than a few V8 powered vehicles in the garage and at the same time dabbles in e-mobility at work. I feel pretty close to the middle. It seems to me charging an EV with a gas or diesel powered generator isn’t as ironic as I originally thought. Imagine if there was a gas shortage. Could we all somehow conjure up gasoline for our V8s by plugging in an electric refinery? These EV owners are just being resourceful.

Johann Wundersamer
October 21, 2019 4:47 pm

There’s a strong attractor binding the words Tesla+Energy+Fear / kinda Tesla dark matter:

%d bloggers like this:
Verified by MonsterInsights