Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #TexasBlackout

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The @PUCTX meets @ 9:30CT today. The 1 Cmsr left is feeling lonely after a rough Senate hearing yesterday.

I'll post a link to agenda and video below but also want to focus on the need for the PUC and other agencies in TX to work with the public.

A thread
#txlege #txenergy
The video will be here at 9:30CT and the agenda is there, too.
texasadmin.com/tx/puct/open_m…

In @PUCTX proceedings, interested parties file comments. In Texas, #txlege set it up many years ago that anyone can file comments. In many states, you must have a lawyer. Not here
#txenergy
To view the comments, go to this site and enter the control number shown in the agenda:

interchange.puc.texas.gov

For example, for the filing by the Independent Market Monitor discussed so vigorously in both House and Senate yesterday, enter 51812 where it says control number
Read 27 tweets
The independent market monitor now testifying in the Senate. ERCOT's Magness and PUCT's Chair D'Andrea next.

The IMM, Bivins, testifying the $16b was NOT wrong, contradicting testimony in the House this morning.

More to come...

senate.texas.gov/av-live.php

#txlege #TexasBlackout
@NathanForTexas asks for clarification on the $16b. Is that a real number?

It's an "economic number," but $5b is the real number, is what I think Bivins said.

To say that's unclear would probably be an understatement.
#txlege.
The filing Bivins is referring to, the Independent Market Monitor's latest official position on the $3b vs. $5b vs. $16b is here: interchange.puc.texas.gov/Documents/5181…

All filings related to these topics are here:

interchange.puc.texas.gov/search/filings…

#txlege #txenergy #energytwitter
Read 5 tweets
I'll tweet this morning on the Tx House State Affairs hearing starting now. You can watch here:
house.texas.gov/video-audio/ #txlege #txenergy

Also US Senate Energy Cmte has a hearing at 9CT on enegy resiliency, esp interested to hear @patwood3 energy.senate.gov/hearings/2021/…

#TexasBlackout
They'll hear from @PUCTX Chair D'Andrea and undoubtedly have lots of questions about the $16b in charges to customer facing retailers, munis, and co-ops Feb. 18-19 that have been the source of much contention lately. Great coverage by @James_Barragan here: dallasnews.com/news/politics/…
They're taking up bills first. List is here: capitol.texas.gov/tlodocs/87R/sc…
Read 52 tweets
Check out this discussion with two #txlege leaders to hear what they're thinking about solutions for dealing with future extreme weather (aka #climatechange).

@evanasmith always asks good questions. Tune in now!

#txlege #txenergy #TexasBlackout
@GoldmanCraig, asked why the #TexasBlackout happened, said all sources of power had failures: coal piles froze, one of the two nuclear plants froze, wind turbines froze, gas pipelines froze, and solar panels had snow.

#txlege #txenergy #ttevents
@Menendez4Texas agrees and says he heard testimony that even if we had more gas plants, it wouldn't have mattered because you couldn't get gas to the plants.

#txlege #ttevents #txenergy
Read 21 tweets
ERCOT has asked to move Denton's lawsuit against its financial practices to Travis County. This a.m.'s hearing was on Zoom, but 16th District Court would not share the link with the public - you had to watch the zoom "broadcast" in court. 1/1 cityofdentonnews.com/post/update-on…
ERCOT hasn't filed an answer to the lawsuit yet. Denton has paid for electricity consumed during the rolling blackouts (an eye-popping $207m), but ERCOT wants more $$ from Denton, other city utilities and rural cooperatives. 2/
The extra charges have a fancy name, 'uplift,' but in essence what they do is take ERCOT's losses from the #TexasBlackout that other utilities can't pay and spread them around. A temporary injunction means Denton doesn't have to pay another $10m or more ... for now 3/
Read 8 tweets
IMPORTANT NOTE for journalists and others reporting on this ERCOT generator outage data & #TexasBlackout #TexasFreeze:

ERCOT's reporting method for wind capacity outages overstates the impact of wind outages on reliability by about 4x.

Here's why...
The outages reported for wind in this report are based on reductions from the "Seasonal Max MW," which is the maxim rated capacity of the wind farm in the winter. But ERCOT wisely does NOT count on wind farms to produce 100% of their output (the wind is inconstant. Duh).
As the Winter "Seasonal Assessment of Resource Adequacy for the ERCOT Region" report details, ERCOT 'de-rates' wind during winter peak load events to account for its variability. The derate differs for wind in different regions, but the average derate is ~25% of the max capacity.
Read 5 tweets
Ok time for a #EnergyTwitter crowdsource investigation: @ERCOT_ISO just released plant-level generator outage data from the #TexasBlackout. Here's a PDF ercot.com/content/wcm/li…

An Excel file is also out: dropbox.com/s/xz91kfbk0vvx…

Holler if you see anything notable! Ill do same.
No cause of outage information included though, so still requires some real guess-work as to what went wrong.

Focus on ~12:00am-2:00am February 15th period. That's when mass generator outages sent the Texas grid dangerously close to full system blackout. ercot.com/content/wcm/ke…
Like, what the heck was going on here with all of these natural gas plants failing over the course of two hours? Many correlated failures at multiple plants at about the same times (12:23-12:27am; 1:00am; 1:23-1:35am).
Read 8 tweets
🧵 Public Utility Commission of Texas just had a 30 minute meeting. Spent a few minutes discussing why they didn’t want to fix THEIR pricing error which forced $9000 Mwh for and how it would actually hurt consumers
In independent economic analysis found they overcharged utilities (and consumers) by $16 Billion. That this would cause bankruptcies and ERCOT CEO Magness admitted on record that this will cause generation instability (Corp speak for more blackouts) @GregAbbott_TX
This study didn’t analyze the Ancillary Services pricing model which is uncapped and resulted in ACTUAL energy prices at $20,000 per mwh at times. Over half of Georgetown, TX utility debt is from this AS pricing highway robbery #txlege
Read 9 tweets
.@GovAbbott will lobby @JoeBiden to add 54 more counties to #Texas major disaster list
#TexasBlackout

dallasnews.com/news/politics/…
Update: @JohnCornyn will join @JoeBiden and @GovAbbott in Houston on Friday.

@TedCruz is scheduled to speak to #CPAC2021 in Orlando Fri morning.
@DanPatrickTX plans to be in Austin.

dallasnews.com/news/politics/…
New details of @JoeBiden visit to Houston: he'll tour Harris County Emergency Operations Center, visit @HoustonFoodBank, and speak at @NRGPark, site of the #Texas' largest #COVID19Vaccine super site.

dallasnews.com/news/politics/…
Read 3 tweets
(1) We’re LIVE: The joint hearing between the House Committees on Energy Resources and State Affairs to discuss last week’s unprecedented #TexasBlackout is underway. Watch live here: tlchouse.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.ph… #txlege
2. “We know that today at least 32 Texans died in last week’s event. Harris County alone has confirmed at least 15 cases of hypothermia including the death of Cristian Pavón-Piñeda” - Vice-Chair @AnaHdzTx #txlege #TexasBlackout
3. “Let us all be relentless and comprehensive in shedding light on the truth as to why and what happened.” #txlege #TexasBlackout
Read 32 tweets
Hey #energytwitter, if you want to tune in to the Senate and House hearings on the #TexasBlackout, links are in next tweet. I'll tweet on it throughout the day on this thread.

Please tweet using #txlege and #txenergy, esp. if you have relevent info that could help going forward
Joint hearing House Energy Resources and State Affairs house.texas.gov/video-audio/

Senate Business & Commerce
senate.texas.gov/av-live.php
First witness in Senate is Bob Rose, meteorologist with @LCRA #txlege #txenergy
Read 223 tweets
1/ Tomorrow, the Texas House and Senate will hold hearings on the #TexasBlackout. One thing I'll be listening carefully for--and likely won't hear from many on the committees--is discussion of #climatechange.

It's beyond time we plan and adapt. A thread #txlege #txclimate
2/ The CEO of ERCOT said last week to @TexasMonthly "We don’t have any climate specialists on staff."

texasmonthly.com/news/interview…
3/ Why? As I said in the @HoustonChron “We never hear the words #climatechange spoken at ERCOT because of the politics. It’s a taboo subject. We’re using the past as a predictor of the future and we can’t do that...

houstonchronicle.com/business/energ…
Read 15 tweets
"Our job is to provide explanations, not excuses. And to find ways to prevent this from happening in the future." -- @ERCOT_ISO president Bill Magness
The slides on the @ERCOT_ISO presentation detailing what the organization does and does not do.
Here's a good breakdown of the different stages of Texas' electricity delivery.
Read 17 tweets
I think Texas needs new leaders... First Ted Cruz and now...

Texas’s Attorney General Ken Paxton and wife TX Senator Angela Paxton both fled to Utah during #TexasBlackout to avoid the freezing cold and water outage while their voters suffered.
houstonchronicle.com/politics/texas…
2) Texas’s elected leaders directly control @ERCOT_ISO — and the deregulation and lack of safety investments that led to Texas’s electricity ⚡️ crisis and humanitarian crisis.
3) The breathtaking callousness of Texas leaders is quite something to behold. It is bottomless.
Read 8 tweets
@paulkrugman 1/ See, the TX market wasn't designed for reliable cost-effective power. It's a cynical construct designed to minimize costs, maximize profits at all times for oil/gas/elec & shift all possible risk to consumers.
@paulkrugman 2/ Nothing about it is 'competitive.' There is one grid, and the elec trans/dist guys have no competition in their assigned regions. All it did was create "energy marketers" who try to lure unwary consumers with constantly tweaked Byzantine pricing plans that require...
@paulkrugman 3/ ...a spreadsheet (!) to understand. THAT enabled the growth of cos like EnergyOgre that charge you % of savings to find cheapest plan. So we have among the highest rates in the US AND we have to pay for help figuring out how not to get maximally screwed by our utility cos.
Read 6 tweets
As the snow melts in #Texas I hope we can all pause and reflect on the many implications of the #TexasBlackout.

In this THREAD I hope to address them all.

First let me express my sincere and profound condolences to all those Texans who have suffered devastating loss.
😔🙏
While it's been a hoot to bash someone as hateful as Ted #CancunCruz, the recent events in Texas have implications much more profound than the actions of one idiotic US Senator. I'll try to break it down into 3 sections.
2)
#TexasBlackout #DemCast #EveryVoice #FreshVoicesRise
1. #ClimateChange/US Infrastructure preparedness.
2. A little history. Why and how did this happen?
3. Performative Governance/The Blame Game!

THREAD
3)
#TexasBlackout #DemCast #EveryVoice #FreshVoicesRise
Read 35 tweets
With most outages over, wholesale prices back to normal, and some truly shocking bills coming due, the policy discussion regarding the #TexasBlackout is ramping up. Some thoughts:
"Texas has a deregulated electricity sector. They failed to keep the lights on. Therefore Texas must regulate electricity." We're going to hear this a lot. We hear the opposite argument whenever a regulatory agency is found to be asleep at the switch (ahem, @US_FDA).
This is a convenient diagnosis that results in ideologues taking turns driving us into a ditch. "You screwed up, so it's my turn to drive." There are likely to be specific causes of last week's breakdown that don't necessarily reflect systemic "markets versus regulation" issues.
Read 24 tweets
FACT:

In texas, Dildos are more regulated than the utility companies.

#TexasBlackout
Factual tweet prior:

Ted Cruz wrote: The Texas Penal Code prohibits the advertisement and sale of dildos, artificial vaginas, and other obscene devices” but does not “forbid the private use of such devices.” motherjones.com/politics/2016/…
Ted Cruz wrote in his brief: “obscene devices do not implicate any liberty interest.” And its brief added that “any alleged right associated with obscene devices” is not “deeply rooted in the Nation’s history and traditions.
The devices he was referring to are dildos
Read 4 tweets
The more I find on EOs CCP access to power grid, chinese transformers, the turbines the more this looks like a coordinated attack on Texas to sell our state out to the CCP. Read!!!
Rt.@DanielEssential
Did you know? Texas has many transformers made in China. Trump created an EO to stop purchasing any Chinese Transformers as they can embed software or harware to be remotely controlled by China 1st thing Joe Biden did is suspend EO for 90days.
Expert: Chinese Power Transformers Pose Threat
mb.ntd.com/expert-chinese…
Read 117 tweets
It takes a lot of gall -- or deliberate ignorance -- to see widespread failures of gas wells, pipelines, & power plants resulting in days-long loss of ~28,000 MW of thermal power plants, mostly gas, and say, "this proves we need more gas and coal plants!"
Some facts on the #TexasBlackouts for @KimStrassel and others peddling false narratives that do nothing but mislead and distract from the key steps Texans need to take.

1. ERCOT news release confirms 28,000 MW of thermal plant outages (mostly gas) ercot.com/news/releases/…
2. "nearly half of the state’s natural gas production has screeched to a halt due to the extremely low temperatures, while freezing components at natural gas-fired power plants have forced some operators to shut down."

texastribune.org/2021/02/16/nat…

#TexasFreeze #TexasBlackout
Read 7 tweets
Yall really going feel this Texas storm zerohedge.com/commodities/pa…
More than 4 million barrels a day of output — almost 40% of the nation’s crude production — is now offline

bloomberg.com/news/articles/…
Oil production nationwide has been cut by at least a third and in the Permian Basin of Texas, the heart of America’s shale industry, output has plummeted by as much as 65%.
bloomberg.com/news/articles/…
Read 42 tweets
How much has the #TexasBlackout cost? I've been thinking a lot about this. Planning is all about balancing risks - the risk of overinvesting and spending unnecessary $, and the risk of underinvesting and incurring the costs of losing electricity access.
How do we quantify those costs of losing access? They are largely non-monetary, especially when you think of the pain, suffering, and deaths we have seen. And then there's plenty of other damages we don't normally include, like home damage from burst pipes.
But we can try to put a price tag on the "value of lost load" (VOLL) through various methods - surveys, production functions, prior blackouts. ("What would you pay to have power?")
Read 8 tweets
I don't entirely agree with this analysis of the #TexasBlackout from @TheEconomist, but it points out several things I want to highlight:

economist.com/united-states/… /1 #cdnpoli #abpoli
1. Utilities infrastructure is not where you should be taking a "go it alone" approach. Period. Texas, like Alberta, tends to overemphasize "rugged individualism" in its politics, and can make some really stupid policy decisions as a result. /2 Image
No, the problem wasn't "unreliable" renewables - the problem was across the board - a result of failing to invest in equipment to mitigate extreme weather. /3 Image
Read 8 tweets
What is the alternative to a failed, for-profit, mostly private power grid that leaves millions to freeze? #TexasBlackout
1. A federally owned supergrid that allows energy to be imported from regions of the country that have an excess of solar, wind, and other energy at that time....
2. Publicly owned, democratically controlled utilities that are directly accountable to the people they serve and invest in grid maintenance and high staffing levels.

3. An end to utility shutoffs for non-payment and programs to prioritize power restoration to the vulnerable.
Read 5 tweets

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