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This paper provides a brief description of the articles contained in the July/August 2004 issue of the IEEE Power and Energy Magazine. This issue focuses on the challenges and opportunities of the global electricity market in the face of recent system failures around the world. This issue also includes an article on the breaching of a flood control dam that resulted in flood conditions and additional dam breaching. The management of the disaster recovery is a shining example of transmission system operations that prevented imminent system collapse and wide outages. It also includes an article providing a historical look at the New York City subway, which marks its centennial anniversary on October 27, 2004, and another article outlining the social and political policy transformation of the utility industry in Australia in recent years.