Whatever their causes, the big blackout in New York and others in California and around the nation have caused business to lose money. An advertisement for American Power Conversion, a Rhode Island firm that specializes in “power-availability solutions” for high-tech and communication businesses, estimates that downtime due to blackouts cost U.S. industry an average of $1 million an hour. The estimates of lost revenue vary by industry, according to the firm: energy, $2.8 million per hour; telecommunications, $2 million; manufacturing, $1.6 million; finance, $1.4 million.
Economists quoted in the mainstream press estimate that total costs due to the blackout were about $6 billion. For New York, costs reached $1 billion.
Additional reporting: Phoebe St John