Power went out in my New Orleans apartment on Saturday, August 28—the day before Category 4 Hurricane Ida crashed into Port Fourchon on Louisiana’s southern coast, 100 miles away. By Sunday night, more than a million Louisiana households and businesses were without electricity, and the entire city of New Orleans was plunged into darkness. Another 104,000 lacked power in Mississippi. On Monday, residents awoke to “feels like” temperatures that rose into the triple digits without air conditioning, fans, ice, or for many, water.
Tens of thousands of electricity workers from 40 states, with the support of the federal government, fanned out across Mississippi and Louisiana. By September 6, Mississippi’s power had been restored, though the same was