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Victoria’s power outage could have been far worse. Can we harden the grid against extreme weather? [Video]

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Wind Energy News

As winds of up to 150km/h raced through the state, transmission towers near Geelong toppled and the grid went into chaos.

Six of these giant towers toppled, causing havoc on the grid (jacquifelgate.)

That makes it comparable to Victoria’s last grid-crippling storms in October 2021.

But this power outage could have been much worse. It speaks to the urgent need to harden our grid against the more frequent extreme weather expected under climate change.

It was very hot in Victoria on February 13. Fires raged in central Victoria, claiming dozens of houses. When a cool change arrived, it brought extreme winds.

At about 12.35pm, Australia’s largest windfarm, Stockyard Hill, disconnected from the grid, as a grass fire threatened its grid connection.

As it happens, the loss of the windfarm was actually a lucky break.

At 2.08pm, six of Victoria’s highest voltage transmission towers (500 kiloVolt) were toppled by extreme downdrafts.

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