(CALMATTERS) – 2020 just keeps getting better.

As many as 2 million Californians experienced one-hour blackouts on Friday and Saturday nights as the state triggered rolling power outages for the first time in nearly two decades amid a record-breaking heat wave. The sky-high temperatures, paired with gusty winds and dry conditions, exacerbated fires across the state, contributed to rare lightning storms and led the National Weather Service to issue a historic warning for a “fire induced tornado” raging through three rural Northern California counties.

A rare lightning storm crackles over Mitchell’s Cove in Santa Cruz, California around 3 a.m. Sunday morning August 16, 2020. The severe storm system rolled through the San Francisco and Monterey Bay areas early Sunday, packing a combination of dry lightning and high winds that triggered wildfires throughout the region. The National Weather Service on Sunday extended a red flag fire warning for the entire Bay Area until 11 a.m. Monday morning. (Shmuel Thaler/The Santa Cruz Sentinel via AP)

The blackouts represent yet another political hurdle for Gov. Gavin Newsom as he struggles to respond to glitchy state tech systems and get a handle on the crumbling economy even as top staff leave his administration.

The state last instituted rolling blackouts in 2001 — helping cost then-Gov. Gray Davis his job in a recall election.

The California Independent System Operator — which runs the state’s power grid — said the shutoffs were due to heat and two out-of-service power plants.

But the demand for electricity peaked at 46,800 megawatts Friday — less than the record 50,270 in July 2006, during which blackouts were avoided even as 140 Californians died amid the heat.

California relies more heavily on solar power than it did in 2006, which has cut down its fossil fuel consumption but also constrained its ability to produce energy after dark — a problem compounded by inadequate battery storage, experts say.