Economic costs of electrical system instability and power outages caused by snakes on the Island of Guam

International Biodeterioration and Biodegradation
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Abstract

The Brown Tree Snake, Boiga irregularis, is an introduced species on Guam where it causes frequent electrical power outages. The snake's high abundance, its propensity for climbing, and use of disturbed habitats all contribute to interruption of Guam's electrical service and the activities that depend on electrical power. Snakes have caused more than 1600 power outages in the 20-yr period of 1978–1997 and most recently nearly 200 outages per year. Single outages spanning the entire island and lasting 8 or more hours are estimated to cost in excess of $3,000,000 in lost productivity, but the costs of outages that involve only parts of the island or those of shorter durations are more difficult to quantify. Costs to the island's economy have exceeded $4.5 M per year over a 7-yr period without considering repair costs, damage to electrical equipment, and lost revenues. Snakes pose the greatest problem on high voltage transmission lines, on transformers, and inside electrical substations.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Economic costs of electrical system instability and power outages caused by snakes on the Island of Guam
Series title International Biodeterioration and Biodegradation
DOI 10.1016/S0964-8305(01)00108-1
Volume 49
Year Published 2002
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Fort Collins Science Center
Description 8 p.
First page 93
Last page 100
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