Life or Death: Making Texas Energy Unreliable and Unaffordable

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Feb 7, 2023, 6:45:12 PMFeb 7

Life or Death: Making Texas Energy Unreliable and Unaffordable

Today - "Texas can't thrive on a wind and solar-only energy future. When we
need it most, wind and solar can't deliver enough to make a significant
difference," tweeted State Sen. Tan Parker (R-Flower Mound) on February 2,
2023. "Oil and gas will continue to be the main energy source for our state and
nation for the foreseeable future."


Big energy, bureaucrats, and elected officials versus hard-working citizens.

Robert Montoya and Jessie Pennington | February 7, 2023

Actions speak louder than words. Despite the established narrative, public
servants are making Texas? electrical grid more unreliable and unaffordable,
potentially putting Texans? lives and livelihoods at risk.

The Era of Energy Liberation

As previously reported in Part 1 of this investigative series, the year-to-year
actions of Texas public servants have created an environment where our state?s
power grid?s downward trajectory is being whitewashed.

From October 2021 to October 2022, Texas? average electricity rate spiked
higher than the national residential electricity rate: 17.8 percent compared to
14.4 percent. This information was gathered by the website Save On Energy.
Texas wasn?t ranked as having the cheapest electrical rates, nor the most
expensive, in the nation; rather, it came too close to joining the list of
those states with the largest annual increases.

Increases in Texas electricity costs appear to be a trend. The website Electric
Choice reports that from September 2020 to September 2021, Texas was one of 22
states where the average electricity rates increased. The other states? rates
saw decreases.

This did not happen in one legislative session, or even three; it?s the result
of a series of actions over the course of decades. Those actions held severe
consequences for Texans, because in the modern Western world, electricity is
not a question of mere convenience. It is more than just not being able to
charge your smartphone or stream videos.

Electricity maintains safe climates in homes and apartments, particularly
during times of extreme weather conditions.

This is a life or death issue, and increasing grid reliance on unreliable
energy sources is a recipe for disaster.

But, Texas was not always on this path. In his 2022 white paper, subject matter
specialist Bill Peacock recalls the positive and productive history of the
state?s era of energy liberation.

It was the 1990s, and Texas had teamed up with other states in liberating
energy markets. They were attempting ?to get cheap electricity out of cheap
natural gas? by swapping ?political rate setting? with customer-empowering
market competition. ?The details of what would be sold and how it would be
priced were left to the ingenuity of buyers and sellers,? economist Robert
Michaels stated.

In short, the customer became king. Of all the states in this electric
liberation alliance, only Texas went all the way.

The benefit for customers was that the power generators would bear the cost for
building new power generation. Such an environment would make building too much
generation, or building unreliable generation, unattractive.

?Under the old regime, consumers had to pay for new power plants whether or not
they were needed,? Bill Peacock wrote in his 2022 white paper ?The Decline and
Fall of Reliability, Affordability, and Competition in ERCOT.? ERCOT is an
acronym for the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, the state bureaucracy
that regulates the state?s power grid.

Peacock?s study noted that in order for the new customer-is-king market to
work, the state ?allowed on-peak energy prices to reach extremely high levels.?
That sounds shocking, but the competition that came with this market forced
energy generators ?to become more efficient and brought substantial
improvements in grid reliability.?

Energy generators were now accountable and responsible for their actions. This
accountability resulted in an improved grid.

But not all energy generators liked this accountability and responsibility.

The Great Reset

Texas public servants, after long years of work, had finally made the energy
customer king. They had done so by shifting from a government-regulated system
to a market one. A true free market makes businesses accountable and
responsible for their decisions. They own the consequences, both good and bad.

But already efforts were underway to undo all of this.

It was 1999, and the sun was setting on Democrat rule in Texas. George W. Bush
was in his second term as governor, and in the process of running for
president. Democrats held the Texas House with a six seat majority, but
Republicans had the Texas Senate with a slim one vote majority.

Peacock?s research finds that it?s in this environment that state lawmakers
started to nervously reset from energy liberation. They passed ?numerous
antitrust measures,? due to fear of ?potential? price gouging by large
companies that deliver large quantities of energy.

This turned out to be only the beginning.

In 2007, state lawmakers almost took Texas? energy market to the polar opposite
of the customer being king. Their attempt to completely annihilate the presence
of any competition, reducing energy customers to serfs, barely failed because
of a technicality.



February: Soooo Hot!

Study: India's "Cold Waves" Have Increased Over The Past Decade

Summer Snow Clips Australia

Arctic Outbreaks For Asia

Europe And North America-With All-Time Record Cold Forecasts

Heavy Snow Sweeps Northern India
Summer "Cold-Snap" Grips Eastern Australia
Record Cold From Canada To Trinidad
Full-Blown Arctic Outbreak To Engulf Europe Starting Sunday

January: Soooo Hot!

Stations Across Antarctica Log Coldest January Temperatures Ever
Utah "Sinks" To -62F - State's Coldest Reading Since 2002
Asia's All-Time Lows
"The Stratosphere Has Suddenly Become Very, Very Cold"
Fierce Freeze Persists In Siberia
All-Time Cold Records Continue To Fall Across Japan
Snow In Mallorca
South Pole's Clear Cooling Trend
Heavy Snow For Europe
Historic Totals Across Western U.S.
Nunavut School Lowers "Cold Weather Cutoff" To -60C (-76F)
"Unprecedented" 170-Strong Herd Of Bison Spotted In Poland
Algeria Sees Rare Snowfall
157 Afghans Now Confirmed To Have Frozen Dead In "Coldest Winter On Record"
Benchmarks Busted In U.S.
*All-Time* Records Continue To Fall Across Japan
Record Lows And Deadly Snows Sweep Japan
Iceland's Coldest December For 50 Years
Cold Arctic Skies Produce Rare "Polar Stratospheric Clouds'
New National Record Low Set In China
All Korean Stations Fall Below Zero
Heathrow's Coldest Jan Temp Since 1987
UK National Grid "Rewarding" Brits For Switching Off Power
Cold Records Fall Across U.S.
"Piercing" Arctic Outbreak Looms
China Suffers -50C (-58F) For First Time In 54 Years
The Russian Towns And Cities Enduring All-Time Record Cold
Kyrgyzstan's Lake "That Never Freezes Over" Just Froze Over
Arctic Blasts For Europe And North America
Central America Endures Record Cold
China Forecast First -50C Since 1969
At Least 100 Killed In Afghanistan's Big Freeze
Major Winter Storm Clatters Plains, Midwest
Antarctic Ice Sheet Posts Record SMB Gains
Arctic Air Encases Europe
Russia's Freeze Intensifies (-80.9F)
Eighth Cold Wave Day Hits Delhi
Record Snow Strikes Arizona And Nevada
Busted: HadCRUT Data Tampering
Historic Cold In Cuba
Records Fall Across India, Pakistan And Iran
Heavy Snow Transforms European Landscapes
33 Feet And Counting: California Town Buried In Snow
Heavy Snow In South Korea
Russia Logs Coldest January Temperature Since 1982
Arctic Air Hits Europe, Delivers Feet Of Snow
Cooling Australia
Asia's Record-Breaking Arctic Outbreak Reaches Indian Ocean
Alerts Issued In India, China, Taiwan and Others
Big Freeze To Return To Europe (Just In Time For Davos)
U.S. To Be Pummeled Again Later In The Month
Extreme Freeze Intensifies Across Asia-Iranian's Told "To Bundle Up"
"More Snow Than Forecast" Buries European Slopes-Even More To Come
U.S. Agri Exports To China Smash Records
Sydney's Longest Spell Of Days Below 30C In 140-Years; Coldest Start To A Year
Since 1982 In São Paulo, Brazil; + Historic Snow In Western U.S. Helps Drive
Northern Hemisphere Snow Mass *Further* Above 1982-2012 Average
Siberia's Coldest Temperature Since 2002
Host Of Records Felled ACROSS Transcontinental Russia
California's Snowpack Highest In 40 Years
Heavy Snow "Causes Chaos" In Oslo
Extreme Freeze Begins Across Vast Areas Of Russia/Asia
Frigid Decembers For North America, Australia, Parts Of Europe, And Asia
Cold 2022 For The South Pole
Historic Snowfall In SD And MN
Twin Cities" Snowiest Start To Winter In 30-Years
Earth's Average Temperature Dropped *AGAIN* In December, Now Down 0.66C From
2016 Peak
Scandinavia's Cold December
If Global Warming Is Real And "Catastrophic", Why Are The Deserts Greening?
UK Avalanche Kills One
Extreme Freeze To Engulf All Of Russia
Mughal Road Blocked By 3-Feet Of Snow
Sydney Failed To Reach 32C In 2022 (First Year In Books Dating Back To 1859)
Greenland's Jakobshavn Glacier Continues To Grow

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