But last week’s deep freeze left millions exposed — and blame must be assigned.By Mitchell SchurmanFebruary 21, 2021
After a cold front knocked out part of Texas’ electric grid a decade ago, companies were urged to winter-proof their power plants against severe weather.
It was a suggestion, not an order, because generators are independent players in Texas’ deregulated market. They alone decide whether such investments are worthy.
“We’re not an enforcement entity,” said Bill Magness, CEO of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, the state grid operator known as ERCOT.
Texas prefers to dangle a carrot: “There’s a very strong financial incentive” for generators, Magness told reporters on a conference call.
Indeed, after Texas temperatures plunged on Valentine’s Day and power supply ran short, the wholesale price of electricity jumped to $9,000 per megawatt hour, up from the usual $20 to $30 range.
Even those maximum prices weren’t enough to restore service, not during a deep freeze that knocked out 40% of generation, and the blame game has been in full swing ever since.
Read the full news article on The Dallas Morning News