Yes, the fact that electrochemical batteries don't work but human central nervous systems do is inexplicable.
In the Emberverse series the people, having no other explanation, settled somewhat sarcastically on "Alien Space Bats" did it.
That doesn't work here because it was obviously caused by people.
Also Steam power must not work because if it did then there would be steam power all over the place after 15 years. Trains, ships, even road vehicles can be powered by steam. This is a serious change to the laws of physics so profound that it can only be described as "magic"