Texas policymakers are looking for scapegoats for the February outages, but Texans have a collective inability to blame natural gas.
The official autopsy of the great Texas winter blackout of February 2021 quickly established a clear timeline of events: Electric utilities cut off power to customers and distributors as well as natural gas producers, which in turn triggered a negative feedback loop that sunk the state deeper and deeper into frigid darkness.
Texas Generation Group Suggests PUC Implement Nonbypassable Charge to Fund Generation Weatherization
In comments to the Texas PUC in a proceeding on weatherization standards, Texas Competitive Power Advocates (TCPA) recommended that the PUC adopt a cost recovery mechanism, perhaps through a non-bypassable charge, for facilities subject to new weatherization mandates for whom cost-of-service ratemaking is unavailable.
Following the events of Winter Storm Uri, Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway proposed a plan that would allow for the company to finance the building of 10,000 megawatts of new, natural gas-fired generating capacity at a cost of $8 billion. Berkshire Hathaway, being a company in business to generate profits to investors, proposes to make a profit from this enterprise as well. Its proposal would be for electricity consumers to reimburse it for the cost of building and operating the plants under a formula that would guarantee it would generate a seemingly reasonable 9.3 percent rate of return on the investment.
Michele Richmond, executive director with Texas Competitive Power Advocates, argues against the plan on behalf of the power generators of Texas in this Forbes article, written by David Blackmon.
Texas Competitive Power Advocates (TCPA) Recommendations to Prevent Future Outage Events Like February 2021
TCPA is committed to working with state leadership, industry regulators and stakeholders who have a vested interest in mitigating the risks associated with extreme weather events. The events of the week of February 14 resulted from many factors, including loss of generating resources across all fuel types.
Click below for TCPA recommendations
Generators are working tirelessly under extreme conditions with their suppliers ERCOT, and the PUC to get as many plants online and producing as possible during this unprecedented time. Click below for more information.
The COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped day-to-day life in the United States and across the globe; but despite all the changes, people continue to expect the lights and air conditioning to come on when they need them. Likewise, our healthcare institutions need reliable and resilient power for the care and safe recovery of patients. The Texas electric generators comprising the Texas Competitive Power Advocates (TCPA) membership are not immune from the impacts of COVID-19, and the industry is evolving to answer the call to ensure reliable electricity continues to be available to meet the needs and expectations of Texans.
Click here to read at gilmermirror.com
Members of Texas Competitive Power Associates (TCPA), a trade association representing power generators and wholesale power marketers in Texas and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) wholesale market, and generating nearly seventy percent (70%) of the electric capacity in ERCOT, have taken action to support the communities in which they operate. Having recognized the enormous hardships the COVID-19 pandemic has caused, these generation companies are contributing to direct relief efforts to help ease the financial burdens and supply challenges that exist both in Texas and other communities across the United States.
Read the full release here
Electric Reliability Council of Texas stakeholders voiced concern Thursday about a proposed rule that would require gas-fired generators to provide detailed information about the status and potential problems with their feedgas pipelines. Ultimately, consideration of the proposal was postponed allowing formal comments to be filed. Michele Gregg, Texas Competitive Power Advocates executive director, said her gas-fired generation members usually have long-term agreements with pipeline operators that forbid disclosure of certain types of confidential information, which may include some of the information described in NPRR 997.