Dallas-Mavs.com Forums
Old 02-18-2021, 04:33 PM   #1
SMC0007
Guru
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: uranus
Posts: 11,289
SMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Snowpocalypse and Cancungate

No fn game tomorrow. Thanks a lot Greg abbot
__________________


you just proofed how stupid you are - CRAZYBOY
SMC0007 is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old 02-18-2021, 08:04 PM   #2
mac222b
Diamond Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,162
mac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SMC0007 View Post
No fn game tomorrow. Thanks a lot Greg abbot
Don’t you mean “thanks AOC!”
mac222b is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2021, 08:40 PM   #3
SMC0007
Guru
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: uranus
Posts: 11,289
SMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by mac222b View Post
Don’t you mean “thanks AOC!”
And Bin Laden
__________________


you just proofed how stupid you are - CRAZYBOY
SMC0007 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2021, 10:27 AM   #4
FreshJive
Diamond Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4,912
FreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by mac222b View Post
Don’t you mean “thanks AOC!”
Abbot tried to blame this on windmills, and aoc tried to blame it on not having the green new deal in place. So predictable. The actual reason for the failure was that the coal, gas, and nuclear plants weren’t equipped to deal with freezing temperatures. Politicians are such shameless liars, and people who Stan them are gullible retards.
FreshJive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2021, 11:01 AM   #5
SMC0007
Guru
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: uranus
Posts: 11,289
SMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by FreshJive View Post
Abbot tried to blame this on windmills, and aoc tried to blame it on not having the green new deal in place. So predictable. The actual reason for the failure was that the coal, gas, and nuclear plants weren’t equipped to deal with freezing temperatures. Politicians are such shameless liars, and people who Stan them are gullible retards.
Yes! The overwhelming vast majority are.
__________________


you just proofed how stupid you are - CRAZYBOY
SMC0007 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2021, 03:42 PM   #6
Melonhead
Diamond Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 8,045
Melonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond reputeMelonhead has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by FreshJive View Post
Abbot tried to blame this on windmills, and aoc tried to blame it on not having the green new deal in place. So predictable. The actual reason for the failure was that the coal, gas, and nuclear plants weren’t equipped to deal with freezing temperatures. Politicians are such shameless liars, and people who Stan them are gullible retards.
It’s due to deregulation and capitalism. Texas didn’t want to be part of the US power grid so they have their own shitty one to avoid regulation and the rich can profit. Then there was no incentive to winterize and equip the resources to deal with something of this magnitude.
__________________
Melonhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2021, 02:39 AM   #7
FreshJive
Diamond Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4,912
FreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Melonhead View Post
It’s due to deregulation and capitalism. Texas didn’t want to be part of the US power grid so they have their own shitty one to avoid regulation and the rich can profit. Then there was no incentive to winterize and equip the resources to deal with something of this magnitude.
Obviously the culprit was no incentive to winterize for a very rare event. The plants had actually just spent resources summerizing, because last year a nearly similar event almost occurred with the droughts and high temperatures Texas experienced last summer. All of the plants rely on water to heat and turn the turbines. This time it froze, last summer they nearly ran out.

The point is that both Reps and Dems lied about this event to score political points, and it is easy to see it, but most people will just agree with their team. Blaming capitalism is a bit simplistic. If power was completely socialized would winterizing Texas coal, gas, and nuclear plants be a priority? I doubt it.
FreshJive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2021, 09:06 AM   #8
tap2390
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Enemy territory (SA)
Posts: 2,550
tap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond reputetap2390 has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Both sides are politicizing this, but to place the blame equally at the feet of each is false equivalency. One side has dominated Texas politics for decades now. During that time Texas has seen unprecedented growth and economic opportunity, true. During that time Texas should have modernized its infrastructure and electrical grid, also true.
__________________
tap2390 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2021, 01:33 PM   #9
EricaLubarsky
Inactive.
 
EricaLubarsky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
Posts: 35,477
EricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tap2390 View Post
Both sides are politicizing this, but to place the blame equally at the feet of each is false equivalency. One side has dominated Texas politics for decades now. During that time Texas has seen unprecedented growth and economic opportunity, true. During that time Texas should have modernized its infrastructure and electrical grid, also true.
We deserve it. We elect idiots who politicize and disregard good people who actually want to do the right thing.

Updating the grid is not sexy and it costs money so lobbyists lobby our politicians against it.

We got ourselves this broken government and we deserve it.
EricaLubarsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2021, 07:44 PM   #10
SMC0007
Guru
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: uranus
Posts: 11,289
SMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond reputeSMC0007 has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by EricaLubarsky View Post
We deserve it. We elect idiots who politicize and disregard good people who actually want to do the right thing.

Updating the grid is not sexy and it costs money so lobbyists lobby our politicians against it.

We got ourselves this broken government and we deserve it.
SMH. I fear you're serious with this take.
__________________


you just proofed how stupid you are - CRAZYBOY
SMC0007 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2021, 03:43 AM   #11
FreshJive
Diamond Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4,912
FreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tap2390 View Post
Both sides are politicizing this, but to place the blame equally at the feet of each is false equivalency. One side has dominated Texas politics for decades now. During that time Texas has seen unprecedented growth and economic opportunity, true. During that time Texas should have modernized its infrastructure and electrical grid, also true.
The blame for this is actually at neither side, but they sure are politicizing it, because people lap this shit up. I'm for socialized medicine, but I know I can still die from cancer in Scandinavia.
FreshJive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2021, 10:53 AM   #12
EricaLubarsky
Inactive.
 
EricaLubarsky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
Posts: 35,477
EricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SMC0007 View Post
SMH. I fear you're serious with this take.
How condescending
EricaLubarsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2021, 12:15 AM   #13
Thespiralgoeson
Diamond Member
 
Thespiralgoeson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Denton, TX
Posts: 9,747
Thespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Super B View Post
Then the geniuses who are Cuban, Donnie and Carlisle dismantled the team. Would they have won another title? Maybe not, but we never got to find out what that group could have done the next season.
Nobody "dismantled" anything. I've said this a million times. This is the most enduring, most frustrating myth of the Mavs' post 2011 doldrums. Letting Tyson Chandler walk in free agency =/= "dismantling" the team. The roster outside of Chandler was not only brought back almost entirely in tact, on paper at least, it was arguably even better. It's not like we let Chandler walk and did nothing else. Vince Carter was an upgrade over Stevenson, and we brought in the reigning Sixth Man of the Year. The problem is... (in my best Stephen A Smith voice) Lamar Odom WAS ON CRACK! Seriously, if we got the player we thought we were getting in Odom, the Mavs might have made a very deep run that year.

I'm not saying letting Chandler walk was the right decision. I think history proved that it wasn't. But a full decade later, people still complain that the Mavs "blew up" their title team, and that's just not true. The truth is, the team blew itself up. They were the oldest team in the league by a pretty fair margin as I recall. Kidd was 40, Marion, Terry, and even our franchise cornerstone Dirk were all in their mid-30s.

The real failure of the MBT wasn't that they "dismantled" the 2011 team, it was continuing "plan powder" for like the next 5-6 years after they swung and missed on Deron Williams and Dwight Howard.
Thespiralgoeson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2021, 10:25 AM   #14
mac222b
Diamond Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,162
mac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond reputemac222b has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tap2390 View Post
Both sides are politicizing this, but to place the blame equally at the feet of each is false equivalency. One side has dominated Texas politics for decades now. During that time Texas has seen unprecedented growth and economic opportunity, true. During that time Texas should have modernized its infrastructure and electrical grid, also true.
This.
mac222b is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2021, 07:29 PM   #15
Thespiralgoeson
Diamond Member
 
Thespiralgoeson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Denton, TX
Posts: 9,747
Thespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by FreshJive View Post
It had nothing to do with “the grid”. It was the plants.
It wasn't any one thing. It was EVERYTHING. It was a complete lack of preparation on every single level for freezing cold. In that sense, it had everything to do with the grid.
Thespiralgoeson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2021, 06:20 AM   #16
Thespiralgoeson
Diamond Member
 
Thespiralgoeson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Denton, TX
Posts: 9,747
Thespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond repute
Default Snowpocalypse and Cancungate

Quote:
Originally Posted by FreshJive View Post
It was solely that the power plants couldn't produce enough power, because they weren't equipped to handle the temperatures. I mean, they could have let us know that, because they obviously saw this coming one to two weeks before it happened, but there wasn't time to winterize the plants at that point. What is meant by EVERYTHING?
I mean... everything. The entire energy infrastructure in the state of Texas. You say "plants" as if that's one small, specific thing. People have tried to blame one source of energy or another for political reasons. It's because the wind turbines froze... It's because natural gas pipelines froze etc.... It was every form of energy, and the infrastructure around them (i.e. the grid) failed on a spectacular level. "It was solely that the power plants couldn't produce enough power." Which plants exactly? You mean... all of them? That's... pretty much everything.

You said it had nothing to do with "the grid," and only that it was solely "the plants." A power grid generally refers to the entire energy producing system and infrastructure. That generally includes the plants that produce the power. If you're simply trying to argue that the plants are not part of "the grid"... A: I'm not entirely sure that's true, and B: even if it is, like, who the hell cares? That's a meaningless technicality. And it's also simply not true to say that the crisis was solely due to the plants not producing enough power. It was the entire infrastructure that broke down- including the inability to move materials and supplies across the state, and perhaps most importantly, the inability to import power from other states or from Mexico, as has been done in the past.

You say it was just that "the plants" weren't winterized, as if that's independent from the grid. WHY weren't the plants winterized? Because Texas has an independent energy infrastructure (one might even be so bold as to call it a grid) that is not subject to federal regulations. Also, ERCOT itself has admitted that the entire grid was less than 5 minutes away from completely collapsing at one point, which would have led to a statewide blackout lasting for several months. I'd say that makes "the grid" very relevant here.

So yeah... it was *everything.*

Last edited by Thespiralgoeson; 03-02-2021 at 10:15 AM.
Thespiralgoeson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2021, 06:47 AM   #17
Thespiralgoeson
Diamond Member
 
Thespiralgoeson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Denton, TX
Posts: 9,747
Thespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond reputeThespiralgoeson has a reputation beyond repute
Default

https://www.texastribune.org/2021/02...treme-weather/

It had a lot to do with the grid.

Quote:
“Power companies get exactly what they want”: How Texas repeatedly failed to protect its power grid against extreme weather
Texas regulators and lawmakers knew about the grid’s vulnerabilities for years, but time and again they furthered the interests of large electricity providers.

BY JEREMY SCHWARTZ, KIAH COLLIER AND VIANNA DAVILA, THE TEXAS TRIBUNE AND PROPUBLICA FEB. 22, 20215 PM


In January 2014, power plants owned by Texas’ largest electricity producer buckled under frigid temperatures. Its generators failed more than a dozen times in 12 hours, helping to bring the state’s electric grid to the brink of collapse.

The incident was the second in three years for North Texas-based Luminant, whose equipment malfunctions during a more severe storm in 2011 resulted in a $750,000 fine from state energy regulators for failing to deliver promised power to the grid.

In the earlier cold snap, the grid was pushed to the limit and rolling blackouts swept the state, spurring an angry Legislature to order a study of what went wrong.

Experts hired by the Texas Public Utility Commission, which oversees the state’s electric and water utilities, concluded that power-generating companies like Luminant had failed to understand the “critical failure points” that could cause equipment to stop working in cold weather.

In May 2014, the PUC sought changes that would require energy companies to identify and address all potential failure points, including any effects of “weather design limits.”

Luminant argued against the proposal.

In comments to the commission, the company said the requirement was unnecessary and “may or may not identify the ‘weak links’ in protections against extreme temperatures.”

“Each weather event [is] dynamic,” company representatives told regulators. “Any engineering analysis that attempted to identify a specific weather design limit would be rendered meaningless.”

By the end of the process, the PUC agreed to soften the proposed changes. Instead of identifying all possible failure points in their equipment, power companies would need only to address any that were previously known.

The change, which experts say has left Texas power plants more susceptible to the kind of extreme and deadly weather events that bore down on the state last week, is one in a series of cascading failures to shield the state’s electric grid from winter storms, ProPublica and The Texas Tribune found.

Lawmakers and regulators, including the PUC and the industry-friendly Texas Railroad Commission, which regulates the oil and gas industry, have repeatedly ignored, dismissed or watered down efforts to address weaknesses in the state’s sprawling electric grid, which is isolated from the rest of the country.

About 46,000 megawatts of power — enough to provide electricity to 9 million homes on a high-demand day — were taken off the grid last week due to power-generating failures stemming from winter storms that battered the state for nearly seven consecutive days. Dozens of deaths, including that of an 11-year-old boy, have been tied to the weather. At the height of the crisis, more than 4.5 million customers across the state were without power.

As millions of Texans endured days without power and water, experts and news organizations pointed to unheeded warnings in a federal report that examined the 2011 winter storm and offered recommendations for preventing future problems. The report by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation concluded, among other things, that power companies and natural gas producers hadn’t properly readied their facilities for cold weather, including failing to install extra insulation, wind breaks and heaters.

Another federal report released three years later made similar recommendations with few results. Lawmakers also failed to pass measures over the past two decades that would have required the operator of the state’s main power grid to ensure adequate reserves to shield against blackouts, provided better representation for residential and small commercial consumers on the board that oversees that agency and allowed the state’s top emergency-planning agency to make sure power plants were adequately “hardened” against disaster.

Experts and consumer advocates say the challenge to the 2014 proposal by Luminant and other companies, which hasn’t been previously reported, is an example of the industry’s outsize influence over the regulatory bodies that oversee them.

“Too often, power companies get exactly what they want out of the PUC,” said Tim Morstad, associate director of AARP Texas. “Even well-intentioned PUC staff are outgunned by armies of power company lawyers and their experts. The sad truth is that if power companies object to something, in this case simply providing information about the durability of certain equipment, they are extremely likely to get what they want.”

Luminant representatives declined to answer questions about the company’s opposition to the weatherization proposal. PUC officials also declined to comment.

Michael Webber, an energy expert and mechanical engineering professor at the University of Texas at Austin, said the original proposal could have helped in identifying trouble spots within the state’s power plants.

“Good engineering requires detailed understanding of the performance limits of each individual component that goes into a system,” Webber said. “Even if 99.9% of the equipment is properly rated for the operational temperatures, that one part out of 1,000 can bring the whole thing down."

Luminant defended its performance during last week’s deep freeze, saying it produced about 25% to 30% of the power on the grid Monday and Tuesday, compared with its typical market share of about 18%.

In a public statement, officials said the company executed a “significant winter preparedness strategy to keep the electricity flowing during this unprecedented, extended weather event.” They declined to disclose whether any of the company’s generating units failed during last week’s winter storms.

State officials are again promising reforms. Lawmakers have called on officials with the PUC and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, which operates the power grid that spans most of the state, to testify at hearings later this week. Gov. Greg Abbott has called on lawmakers to mandate the winterization of generators and power plants, and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said he was launching an investigation into ERCOT and almost a dozen power companies, including Luminant. Separately, the PUC announced its own investigation into ERCOT.

The Blanco Vista neighborhood of San Marcos is blanketed with several inches of snow as a massive winter weather system caus…
The Blanco Vista neighborhood of San Marcos was blanketed with several inches of snow Feb. 15 after a massive winter weather system engulfed Texas, causing widespread power outages across the state. Credit: Jordan Vonderhaar for The Texas Tribune
Texas is the only state in the contiguous U.S. that operates its own electric grid, making it difficult for other regions to send excess power in times of crisis, especially when they are facing their own shortages, as they were last week. All other states in the Lower 48, as well as peripheral areas of Texas, are connected to one of two grids that span the eastern and western halves of the country.

Because Texas operates its own grid, the state isn’t subject to federal oversight by FERC, which can investigate power outages but can’t mandate reforms. Many energy experts say the very nature of the state’s deregulated electric market is perhaps most to blame for last week’s power crisis.

In Texas, a handful of mega-utilities controlled the distribution and pricing of the power they produced until two decades ago, when the Legislature shifted to a system where companies would compete for customers on the open market. Lawmakers said the change would result in lower power bills and better service, a promise that some experts and advocates say hasn’t been kept.

But under this system, power companies aren’t required to produce enough electricity to get the state through crises like the one last week. In fact, they are incentivized to ramp up generation only when dwindling power supplies have driven up prices.

Other states with deregulated power markets, including California, have made reforms and added additional safeguards after experiencing similar catastrophes.

“The fault on this one is at the feet of the Legislature and the regulators for their failure to protect the people rather than profits, the utility companies, rather than investing millions of dollars in weatherization that had been recommended in review after review of these kinds of incidents,” said Tom “Smitty” Smith, a longtime Texas consumer advocate and environmental activist. “They have chosen not to do that because it would be too expensive for the utilities and ultimately to the consumers.”

“We'll be opportunistic”
Three years after the 2011 storms, the Texas electric grid faced another major cold weather test when a polar vortex swept across the state. Freezing temperatures helped to knock out nearly 50 generating units at Texas power plants in the first week of 2014, bringing ERCOT perilously close to ordering rotating outages.

The event quickly faded from public attention because it was a near-miss that didn’t actually leave people without electricity or heat. But because the state had come so close to blackouts, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation, which has some authority to regulate power companies in the country, launched an investigation. The probe found similar problems to those that dogged the state after the 2011 storms, primarily equipment that failed to stand up to the freezing temperatures.

Despite the equipment failures that brought the electric grid to the brink of disaster, the polar vortex was a financial windfall for power-generation companies. In the months that followed the storm, some of the companies stressed to investors the financial benefits of the two days of cold weather and accompanying high energy prices.

“This business benefited significantly from increased basis and storage spreads during the polar vortex earlier this year,” Joe McGoldrick, an executive with Houston-based CenterPoint Energy, said in a November 2014 earnings call. “To the extent that we get another polar vortex or whatever, absolutely, we’ll be opportunistic and take advantage of those conditions.”

A CenterPoint spokeswoman said McGoldrick was the head of the company's gas marketing division, but has since left the company. She said that division was sold last year and had no role in responding to last week's storms.

"The remarks made in 2014 do not reflect the core values of CenterPoint Energy," Natalie Hedde, communications director, said.


Texas has relied on the principle that higher prices will spur greater power generation when the state needs it most, a structure that helps explain the persistence of blackouts, said Ed Hirs, a University of Houston energy expert.

In extreme weather events like last week’s freeze, prices per megawatt hour jumped from an average of around $35 to ERCOT’s maximum of $9,000.

Hirs said it’s in the power generators’ interest to “push ERCOT into a tight situation where price goes up dramatically.”

“They are giving generators incentive to withdraw service,” he added. “How else do you get the price to go up?”

Texans have already been hit with sky-high bills since last week’s event, with some climbing as high as $16,000, according to The New York Times. At an emergency meeting Sunday, the three-member PUC ordered electric companies to suspend disconnections for nonpayment and delay sending invoices or bill estimates.

Power companies weren’t the only ones that saw the 2014 event more as a success story than a sign of weakness.

ERCOT concluded that operators “handled a difficult situation well” and took “prompt and decisive actions” that had prevented systemwide blackouts. In the “lessons learned” section of its final report, the agency promoted the continuation of its winterization site visits, which are not mandatory.

Winterization efforts were paying dividends in the form of fewer generating units falling victim to cold weather, the report stated.

Federal regulators agreed. During a meeting of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners in February 2014, a month after the storm, a top-ranking official from NERC stated that the response showed “industry is learning [and] using the resources and tools available to improve their preparations and operations of the grid during a significant weather event.”

But NERC’s investigation exposed problems that would bring Texas to a crisis point last week.

In the 2014 report, NERC methodically laid out how power-generating equipment failed during the cold snap, detailing 62 examples that included frozen circulating water that caused a supply loss and moisture in the air causing valves to freeze. In all, those cold-related failures were responsible for the vast majority of lost power during the event, the agency found.

The incident also highlighted the need to improve winter performance of natural gas pipelines, which NERC found hampered the ability of gas-fired power plants to generate electricity. The agency declined to comment, saying it doesn’t discuss investigations.

Natural gas and power generation are highly dependent on each other: Natural gas processing requires electricity, which may be produced in turn by burning natural gas.

Citing preliminary figures from ERCOT that show natural-gas-fired power plants performed worse than those fueled by other types of energy during this year’s power crisis, energy experts say producers and distributors of that fossil fuel played a major role in the catastrophe.

Natural gas producers and pipeline companies in Texas are regulated by the Railroad Commission.

R.J. DeSilva, a spokesperson for the agency, declined to say whether it requires natural gas producers and pipeline companies to weatherize wellheads or pipelines. He noted that poor road conditions made it impossible for crews from natural gas companies to inspect wells and said some producers reported “the inability to produce gas because they did not have power.”

Because so many homes are heated with natural gas, fossil fuel plays a much more central role in the winter than it does in the hot summer months.

“When all this began, millions of Texans wrapped their pipes to keep them from freezing, and the Railroad Commission didn’t order — has never ordered — the gas companies, the gas producers and gas pipeline companies … to wrap their pipes to protect them from freezing,” said Smith, the consumer advocate.


After days of scrambling to address the myriad crises that pummeled his city last week, former longtime state Rep. Sylvester Turner — now mayor of Houston, the state’s largest city — had a message for his former colleagues.

“You need to dust off my bill, and you need to refile it,” the Democrat said during a press conference Friday, referring to legislation he filed in 2011 that would have required the PUC to ensure ERCOT maintained adequate reserve power to prevent blackouts. “Because it’s not about just holding hearings.”

The state’s deregulated market is to blame for the crisis, according to some experts who say the catastrophe shows that the system ultimately prizes profits over people. But some of the architects of the system are doubling down.

In a blog post published last week on the website of U.S. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry suggested that the current disaster was worth it if it keeps rates low and federal regulators from requiring changes to the system.

“Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business,” said Perry, who was governor from 2000-15 and presided over the early days of energy deregulation in Texas. “Try not to let whatever the crisis of the day is take your eye off of having a resilient grid that keeps America safe personally, economically, and strategically.”

Perry, who returned to his job on the board of Dallas-based pipeline giant Energy Transfer LP after serving as energy secretary in the Trump administration, received at least $141,000 in campaign contributions from Luminant’s former parent company, TXU Corp., between 2002 and 2009, when he was governor.

On Saturday, Turner warned about the soaring residential utility bills that Texans would be getting in the coming weeks. In 2012, when Turner was still a state representative, he wrote a letter to the then-chairman of the House State Affairs Committee, raising concerns about PUC rule changes that increased the price caps companies could charge for power to $9,000 per megawatt hour.

Those price caps remain the same today.

This time, Turner called on lawmakers to pursue substantive reforms that don’t simply “scapegoat” ERCOT, referring to the increasing calls for an investigation into the council, including by Abbott. “You must include the Public Utility Commission in these reforms because they provide direct oversight over ERCOT, and all of those commissioners are appointed by the governor,” Turner said.

In 2013, Turner attempted, unsuccessfully, to pass a measure that would have replaced the governor’s appointees on the PUC with an elected commissioner. The same year, he tried to salvage a measure that would have increased the administrative penalty for electric industry participants that violate state law or PUC rules.

The Texas Sunset Advisory Commission, which audits state agencies every 12 years to determine how they can better function or if they should be abolished, recommended in 2013 that the PUC exercise additional oversight of ERCOT, including a review and approval of annual budgets and annual review of “PUC-approved performance measures tracking ERCOT’s operations.”

One of the recommendations called on the PUC to increase the administrative penalty to $100,000 a day per violation, stating that the $25,000 daily penalty “may not be sufficient for violations that affect grid reliability, which can cause serious grid failures, such as blackouts.”

Lawmakers passed a bill during that year’s legislative session that adopted many of those recommendations, but the change in penalties was left out. An amendment by Turner to restore the higher fee in the bill failed.

Another former Democratic lawmaker who now leads a major Texas city similarly tried and failed to pass legislation that would bring greater accountability to the state.

In 2015, Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson, then a state representative, authored a bill that would have required state agencies, including the PUC, to plan and budget for severe weather using state climatologist data.

“It would have forced state agencies to prepare for an event like what just happened and to account for that in their agency plans,” Johnson said during a Thursday press conference addressing the crisis. “It was quite unfortunate, because we can’t say that it would have prevented this situation but certainly may have.”

Then, two years ago, facilities owned or controlled by utilities regulated by the PUC were exempted from legislation that requires the Texas Division of Emergency Management to “identify methods for hardening utility facilities and critical infrastructure in order to maintain essential services during disasters.”

The bill’s author, Republican state Rep. Dennis Paul, declined to comment. State Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr., who co-sponsored the measure, said he did not know why the PUC was exempted.

For the past two decades, consumer groups have fought without success for a larger role in how the state manages its power grid. Giving residents a stronger presence on the ERCOT board would have forced the agency to take the lessons of extreme winter storms in 2011 and 2014 more seriously, said Randall Chapman, a ratepayer attorney and longtime consumer advocate.

“It would have changed things entirely,” Chapman said. “Residential consumers are the ones who have been through outages before. They are the ones with the broken water pipes, the ones freezing in their homes. They would be demanding answers.”

Chapman said the groups were stymied when the Legislature agreed to reserve only a single seat on the ERCOT board for a representative of residential consumers. In comparison, eight seats, including alternates, are filled by representatives of energy retailers, power generators and investor-owned utility companies.

“Residential consumers need a stronger voice over at ERCOT,” Morstad of AARP Texas said. “Decisions are made every week that affect the health and safety of millions of Texans. You need a strong voice there to call B.S. when companies aren’t following through on winterizing or other things that are critical to reliability of the electric system.”

In 2011, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar co-authored a bill while serving in the state Legislature that would have increased the size of the ERCOT board and allowed for more consumer representation. It didn’t pass.

Hegar said the failures displayed in the last week once again bring the significance of representation to the forefront.

“As a result of this extremely unfortunate event where so many people were out of power and now have damage to their homes and their businesses, there needs to be a broader range of representation on the board and to bring those voices as we move forward in trying to decide what we want our electric grid to be,” Hegar said.
Thespiralgoeson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2021, 01:33 PM   #18
EricaLubarsky
Inactive.
 
EricaLubarsky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
Posts: 35,477
EricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond reputeEricaLubarsky has a reputation beyond repute
Default Snowpocalypse and Cancungate

Consolidated discussion

Last edited by EricaLubarsky; 03-02-2021 at 01:52 PM.
EricaLubarsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2021, 02:37 PM   #19
FreshJive
Diamond Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4,912
FreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond reputeFreshJive has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thespiralgoeson View Post
I mean... everything. The entire energy infrastructure in the state of Texas. You say "plants" as if that's one small, specific thing. People have tried to blame one source of energy or another for political reasons. It's because the wind turbines froze... It's because natural gas pipelines froze etc.... It was every form of energy, and the infrastructure around them (i.e. the grid) failed on a spectacular level. "It was solely that the power plants couldn't produce enough power." Which plants exactly? You mean... all of them? That's... pretty much everything.

You said it had nothing to do with "the grid," and only that it was solely "the plants." A power grid generally refers to the entire energy producing system and infrastructure. That generally includes the plants that produce the power. If you're simply trying to argue that the plants are not part of "the grid"... A: I'm not entirely sure that's true, and B: even if it is, like, who the hell cares? That's a meaningless technicality. And it's also simply not true to say that the crisis was solely due to the plants not producing enough power. It was the entire infrastructure that broke down- including the inability to move materials and supplies across the state, and perhaps most importantly, the inability to import power from other states or from Mexico, as has been done in the past.

You say it was just that "the plants" weren't winterized, as if that's independent from the grid. WHY weren't the plants winterized? Because Texas has an independent energy infrastructure (one might even be so bold as to call it a grid) that is not subject to federal regulations. Also, ERCOT itself has admitted that the entire grid was less than 5 minutes away from completely collapsing at one point, which would have led to a statewide blackout lasting for several months. I'd say that makes "the grid" very relevant here.

So yeah... it was *everything.*
My definition of the grid was the power transmission and delivery system. It may be wrong. The point of failure was the power plants. Specifically the coal, gas, and nuclear plants. Solar and wind are supposed to be variable, and their outages were within the planned ranges during the event, and they were also brought back up quickly, so they weren’t the culprit. I didn’t see anywhere that there was a structural inability to bring in power from Oklahoma and Mexico. I’ve read the opposite, that they maintain it so they can sell energy to those locations. Maybe you have a source.
FreshJive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2021, 01:03 PM   #20
sefant77
Guru
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Brasil
Posts: 15,390
sefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Texas Talibans

Yeah that sums it up
sefant77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 09:55 AM   #21
Murphy3
Guru
 
Murphy3's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: sport
Posts: 39,375
Murphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond reputeMurphy3 has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by sefant77 View Post
Texas Talibans

Yeah that sums it up
F off...that sums it up.
Murphy3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 10:20 AM   #22
sefant77
Guru
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Brasil
Posts: 15,390
sefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond reputesefant77 has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Murphy3 View Post
F off...that sums it up.
Hah... I stopped long time ago caring about your irrelevant ass.

Now f off to your taliban boys
sefant77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump




All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:59 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.