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Texas's Energy Woes Have Many Calling for More Load Management

Todd Carney's picture
Writer Freelance

Todd Carney is a graduate of Harvard Law School. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Public Communications. He writes on many different aspects of energy, in particular how it...

  • Member since 2021
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  • May 17, 2022
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Utility Dive is reporting on energy shortages in Texas and the need for load management there. With Summer seemingly coming later for everywhere this year, states are just starting to face more intense heat. This has resulted in strains for TX’s grid.

Last weekend, the heat saw six major electricity suppliers in TX fall offline. TX officials called for the people of TX to conserve their energy. Although the grid did not completely fail, it is not even officially summer yet, and TX will face more intense heat, putting further strain on the grid.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) oversees energy distribution for TX, they have said that they are working on providing more energy to stave off future threats. ERCOT has been working in tandem with the Public Utilities Commission of Texas (PUCT) on these efforts.

While ERCOT was communicative about working on the issues with energy during the heat spike over the weekend, they gave no information about the energy plants that went offline. ERCOT called on Texans not to put their thermostat lower than 78 degrees and to avoid using appliances during peak hours of energy use.

Beyond the general heat, TX’s grid faces strain from population growth and crypto mining. TX has failed to keep up with these increased demands in terms of building energy distribution centers.

Some advocates are calling for TX to invest more in renewable energy because they feel it is an untapped market that could help relieve the stress on the grid. Moreover, some believe that TX’s government should be more aggressive in managing energy plants to be ready on hand to ramp up energy production. These advocates argue that the failure for TX to do this has increased overall energy costs to as much as $1 billion.

While TX has not seen anything like last winter yet, the threat of the grid going down looms and requires an innovative and aggressive approach.

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