Adobe Stock/Simon Kraus

Generating more electricity than 2,000 homes can use, the 700,000 individual solar panels near Babcock Ranch in Punta Gorda, Florida, proved resilient as Hurricane Ian pummeled the state. Sustaining minimal damage and maintaining power, the community's Babcock Neighborhood School has become an official shelter and refuge for victims of the storm.

As utilities scramble to restore power across the state, Babcock residents say September storms showed that America’s energy infrastructure is not well-equipped to handle worsening extreme weather events. Hurricane Fiona ravaged Puerto Rico’s power grid when it made landfall there on September 18. Now, Ian has left millions of people in the dark in Florida.

Babcock residents say their neighborhood is a model for urban development in a climate change-ravaged future.

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