As the world grapples with the unfolding human and economic toll of the coronavirus pandemic, keeping the electricity system running has become more important than ever. It's also become more complicated than ever.
Over the past month, quarantines have closed down large swaths of the global economy and forced millions to shelter and work at home. These disruptions are causing dramatic shifts in energy-consumption patterns and forcing utilities and grid operators to adjust both their day-to-day operations and long-term plans.
It's hard to predict how long these changes will last or how deeply they will alter the ongoing operations of utilities and grid operators across the country. But the past few weeks have provided some data that can help utilities and grid operators prepare for what's coming.