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ERCOT, PUC, and deregulation got us here


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The "what" is easily observed with the raw data and needs no editorialization.  Gas, wind and coal energy production went into the shitter in that order of magnitude.  The underlying why is going to take an investigation.  All 3 energy sources deserve scrutiny as to why they failed during this weather event.  Liberal or conservative politics about energy shouldn't come into play in that investigation whatsoever (but I am sure they will).  A huge part of our national death spiral is that no one wants to face the truth.  Instead, everyone circles their ideological wagons whenever there is an event that might jeopardize them (this, school shootings, etc...)

151630792-10225149351550379-538945421720

 

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Freezing rain is going to fuck with wind turbines.  I don't think there's a way around that.  I'm sure there are other cold weather issues that also popped up that can be addressed, but freezing rain is always going to cause problems.

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7 minutes ago, Goredho said:

The "what" is easily observed with the raw data and needs no editorialization.  Gas, wind and coal energy production went into the shitter in that order of magnitude.  The underlying why is going to take an investigation.  All 3 energy sources deserve scrutiny as to why they failed during this weather event.  Liberal or conservative politics about energy shouldn't come into play in that investigation whatsoever (but I am sure they will).  A huge part of our national death spiral is that no one wants to face the truth.  Instead, everyone circles their ideological wagons whenever there is an event that might jeopardize them (this, school shootings, etc...)

151630792-10225149351550379-538945421720

 

Goddam.  Use some contrasting colors ffs.

The other thing about this is that I believe coal power production was intended to increase by bringing offline capacity online (peaker plants).  Most Texas coal plants are partially offline on the way to being completely shuttered.

I'm not sure gas and I'm pretty sure wind were not expected to significantly increase production, but coal was.  And they all took a shit.

Edited by TwiceHorn
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This is seeming to be a "National Guard" Type event is it not?

There have to be a ton of people stuck in their homes running out of food. I would expect the National Guard to have Vehicles that could help road clear, get meals to people etc

Maybe problem is just too widespread to make it worth it.

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11 minutes ago, TwiceHorn said:

Penelope is a bigtime accountant and finance person in the energy and related sectors, I believe.

Dismiss her knowledge at your peril.

Yes it appears that OK, AR and LA are cheaper than Texas.  Which is not really surprising as having smaller populations and areas probably reduces the infrastructure cost, they are all petroleum and other hydrocarbon rich, and have to do less transport of the hydrocarbons for power generation.

I understand— Pen seems to have a very good basic understanding of the industry which i appreciate and have learned from.

I’m just trying to understand how what I’ve said (any additional costs will be an extra out of pocket cost/tax, which sucks but might just be the cost of living in TX these days) and agreeing with what you said, in that any additional costs and regulation will be potentially unpopular, while commenting that Texas is already higher than neighboring states who purport to have these insurance measures in place— which was both second hand data from folks on this thread and fleshed out from an actual chart/data)— I’m trying to understand how that makes me “F’ing stupid” or “so f’ing wrong” etc., especially when Penelope’s response to back up her initial logical fallacy (name calling/emotional irrationality) is just another logical fallacy (appeal to authority) because “you can’t trust the data, you have to be in the industry to really know the real deal, lots of ins and outs, etc.” to paraphrase our friend.

And to your point there are probably very logical reasons (some you laid out) Texas is indeed higher than our neighbors (which again I said and was told I’m a dummy), but I think to your point of Texas being higher than average is not taking into account outliers like Alaska and Hawaii, etc.

Lastly, if Penelopes response was essentially because she recognized me as a Trump voter than I question her aptitude (at least EQ) and discernment if she is as you say a true big player in the energy & utilities space— a space where Trump is popular— as those people look more like me than her.

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This is seeming to be a "National Guard" Type event is it not?
There have to be a ton of people stuck in their homes running out of food. I would expect the National Guard to have Vehicles that could help road clear, get meals to people etc
Maybe problem is just too widespread to make it worth it.

The national guard is duty socialism
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aggy Rick: We'd rather freeze than have the dang gummint tell us what to do. 

Also, usual talking points blaming wind and solar, needz moar cole, etc

 

Quote

WASHINGTON - Former Texas governor Rick Perry suggests that going days without power is a sacrifice Texans should be willing to make if it means keeping federal regulators out of the state’s power grid.

In a blog posted on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's website, Perry is quoted responding to the claim that “those watching on the left may see the situation in Texas as an opportunity to expand their top-down, radical proposals.”

“Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business,” Perry is quoted as saying. “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.”

Texas’s power grid, run by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, or ERCOT, occupies a unique distinction in the United States in that it is not under the oversight of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission because it does not cross state lines.

That has long been a point of pride with Texas politicians who in the 1990s chose to deregulate the state's power market and allow power companies, not state regulators determine when and how to build and maintain power plants.

That system has fallen under scrutiny in recent days as millions of Texans are left without power following an unusual cold snap. Following a near identical episode a decade ago, federal regulators warned Texas it needed to take steps to better insulate its power plants.

But there is little indication that happened, prompting criticism of ERCOT from Texas Republicans and Democrats alike.

Perry, former president Donald trump's energy secretary, however, blamed the rolling blackouts on the rise of wind and solar energy in Texas.

“If wind and solar is where we’re headed, the last 48 hours ought to give everybody a real pause and go wait a minute,” Perry said. “We need to have a baseload. And the only way you can get a baseload in this country is [with] natural gas, coal, and nuclear.”

That argument has been made by numerous conservatives in the midst of the blackouts. But it does not line up with early reports indicating the majority of the lost generation was natural gas plants not wind turbines, which actually performed better than grid regulators had anticipated, said Michael Webber an energy professor at the University of Texas.

 

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10 minutes ago, BrazilHorn said:

This is seeming to be a "National Guard" Type event is it not?

There have to be a ton of people stuck in their homes running out of food. I would expect the National Guard to have Vehicles that could help road clear, get meals to people etc

Maybe problem is just too widespread to make it worth it.

Doesn't every police department have tanks these days? Use those to deliver food, and let the cops dole out a little stick time to keep them satisfied 

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2 minutes ago, Doc Sam Beckett said:

Doesn't every police department have tanks these days? Use those to deliver food, and let the cops dole out a little stick time to keep them satisfied 

Good point. There has to be some way to leverage all of their toys to actually benefit citizens in need.

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18 minutes ago, DonkeyCigars said:

I understand— Pen seems to have a very good basic understanding of the industry which i appreciate and have learned from.

I’m just trying to understand how what I’ve said (any additional costs will be an extra out of pocket cost/tax, which sucks but might just be the cost of living in TX these days) and agreeing with what you said, in that any additional costs and regulation will be potentially unpopular, while commenting that Texas is already higher than neighboring states who purport to have these insurance measures in place— which was both second hand data from folks on this thread and fleshed out from an actual chart/data)— I’m trying to understand how that makes me “F’ing stupid” or “so f’ing wrong” etc., especially when Penelope’s response to back up her initial logical fallacy (name calling/emotional irrationality) is just another logical fallacy (appeal to authority) because “you can’t trust the data, you have to be in the industry to really know the real deal, lots of ins and outs, etc.” to paraphrase our friend.

And to your point there are probably very logical reasons (some you laid out) Texas is indeed higher than our neighbors (which again I said and was told I’m a dummy), but I think to your point of Texas being higher than average is not taking into account outliers like Alaska and Hawaii, etc.

Lastly, if Penelopes response was essentially because she recognized me as a Trump voter than I question her aptitude (at least EQ) and discernment if she is as you say a true big player in the energy & utilities space— a space where Trump is popular— as those people look more like me than her.

Didn't you already try out this golly gee whilikers innocence act on @Bama Chick ?

Stop being a condescending prickhole. And Penelope is right, you're dumb as dirt. 

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18 minutes ago, DonkeyCigars said:

I understand— Pen seems to have a very good basic understanding of the industry which i appreciate and have learned from.

I’m just trying to understand how what I’ve said (any additional costs will be an extra out of pocket cost/tax, which sucks but might just be the cost of living in TX these days) and agreeing with what you said, in that any additional costs and regulation will be potentially unpopular, while commenting that Texas is already higher than neighboring states who purport to have these insurance measures in place— which was both second hand data from folks on this thread and fleshed out from an actual chart/data)— I’m trying to understand how that makes me “F’ing stupid” or “so f’ing wrong” etc., especially when Penelope’s response to back up her initial logical fallacy (name calling/emotional irrationality) is just another logical fallacy (appeal to authority) because “you can’t trust the data, you have to be in the industry to really know the real deal, lots of ins and outs, etc.” to paraphrase our friend.

And to your point there are probably very logical reasons (some you laid out) Texas is indeed higher than our neighbors (which again I said and was told I’m a dummy), but I think to your point of Texas being higher than average is not taking into account outliers like Alaska and Hawaii, etc.

Lastly, if Penelopes response was essentially because she recognized me as a Trump voter than I question her aptitude (at least EQ) and discernment if she is as you say a true big player in the energy & utilities space— a space where Trump is popular— as those people look more like me than her.

Because you are comparing apples and oranges.  First, both Louisiana and Oklahoma are magnitudes smaller in population than Texas.  Second, neither of those states have significant renewables (which is more expensive than conventional power production) nor do they have a renewable mandate, which Texas does.  Third, both Louisiana and Oklahoma are utility only states, which is a completely different model.

Again, you need to look at Texas prices compared to prices in MISO, NYISO, and PJM if you want to get closer to an apples to apples comparison.

And I think you are stupid because of how obtuse you are.  However, if you voted for Trump and support Trump, welp, that just speaks for itself.

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And You are like a child, wandering into the middle of a movie...
I'm not here to gum up this thread with facts about the energy industry; Penelope is putting on a clinic in that regard.

I'm just here to insult you for being such a goddamn moron as evidenced the parade of stupidity you've left in the CR. And it seems that bama chick had you pegged.
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Just now, Gourmand said:

I'm not here to gum up this thread with facts about the energy industry; Penelope is putting on a clinic in that regard.

I'm just here to insult you for being such a goddamn moron as evidenced the parade of stupidity you've left in the CR. And it seems that bama chick had you pegged.

A child. A movie theater. Gourmand.

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6 minutes ago, PenelopeWitherspoon said:

Because you are comparing apples and oranges.  First, both Louisiana and Oklahoma are magnitudes smaller in population than Texas.  Second, neither of those states have significant renewables (which is more expensive than conventional power production) nor do they have a renewable mandate, which Texas does.  Third, both Louisiana and Oklahoma are utility only states, which is a completely different model.

Again, you need to look at Texas prices compared to prices in MISO, NYISO, and PJM if you want to get closer to an apples to apples comparison.

And I think you are stupid because of how obtuse you are.  However, if you voted for Trump and support Trump, welp, that just speaks for itself.

That's my issue with wind energy in a nutshell.  It's more expensive, and it's unreliable.  We have tried to keep rates low by going all in on natural gas (which is cheap now, but has it's own reliability issues as we are seeing).  We've also been skipping the insurance payments, so to speak, an increasingly risky proposition given our increasingly risky power mix. Now it will require a very expensive fix that we will all pay for.

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Just now, JohnLocke said:

That's my issue with wind energy in a nutshell.  It's more expensive, and it's unreliable.  We have tried to keep rates low by going all in on natural gas (which is cheap now, but has it's own reliability issues as we are seeing).  We've also been skipping the insurance payments, so to speak, an increasingly risky proposition given our increasingly risky power mix. Now it will require a very expensive fix that we will all pay for.

Wind and solar can be more reliable with energy storage.  Texas, as the leader in wind energy in the US (third in the world I believe), should be helping shepherd the way.  We should be engaging with folks like ole Elon to try and help come up with solutions.  Texas can still be the energy capital of the world post oil and gas, but they are abdicating their place because of shitty state leadership.

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14 minutes ago, PenelopeWitherspoon said:

 Second, neither of those states have significant renewables (which is more expensive than conventional power production) nor do they have a renewable mandate, which Texas does. 

oklahoma has committed a lot of money to wind energy and a lot of their electricity is generated from wind power.  in 2018 44% of their total energy was produced from wind and solar. 

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The grid collapsing and people freezing to death is good, actually, because it is making people aware of how dangerous it would be, hypothetically, to have a Green New Deal.  

But in all seriousness, this is making me aware of how dumb Abbott is. When Rick Perry left I was like, bring on the next right wing nut, but at least he can't be that dumb. Abbott is just not competent. 

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4 minutes ago, JohnLocke said:

That's my issue with wind energy in a nutshell.  It's more expensive, and it's unreliable...

All innovations are expensive and unreliable early.  The development of the airplane didn't end with this (obviously engineered by an aggy).

AsOq1I.gif

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Has there been any discussion on the seemingly haphazard way the blackouts have been instituted?  I can believe and understand that taking down city circuits that draw the most demand is more efficient than shutting off 9 farmers in van zandt county, but how is it not organized in groups and waves that are efficient and predictable?  Where are the shutdown points?  Is it not all controlled remotely via central command or network of regional command stations?  
the neighborhoods I’ve read posts about where half gets power back and half doesn’t, why aren’t they alternating?

is it that difficult for each city to be split into X groups, and roll power to each group one at a time for an hour or two?  That way each group would have power for an hour or two then go without for (X-1)*hours of power while the other groups get their time?  That would not only give people enough power to maintain some semblance of climate control and cooking ability, but it would be a schedule that could be planned for. 
 

also, any functions that are deemed untouchable like city services buildings and hospitals and such should have emergency generators- because if they cannot lose power under any circumstances then they need to be prepared for unintentional power failure. Aaaaaaand if they have emergency generators, they should be able to handle some of the load of rolling blackouts, even if they aren’t as frequent as the residential.   I’d hope that if you told a police station, water treatment facility, jail, or hospital that they will lose power for 2 hours starting the next day from 7-9 pm they could accommodate that, or reply about the robustness of their backup capabilities (we have enough fuel to run our gennys for an hour only). 
 

this bullshit where some people are dark for 24-60 hours straight is unacceptable, and it doesn’t appear to be localized to any particular metro area in Texas. 

Edited by Pato del Muerto
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The new talking point I’ve seen now that reports indicate the bulk of the outages are from thermal plants going offline is that the problem is that we spent money to invest in renewable energy instead of upgrading thermal options. Some people just want to move the goalposts to fit their ideological narrative of “renewable energy bad, fossil fuels good”.

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20 minutes ago, Gourmand said:

I'm not here to gum up this thread with facts about the energy industry; Penelope is putting on a clinic in that regard.

I'm just here to insult you for being such a goddamn moron as evidenced the parade of stupidity you've left in the CR. And it seems that bama chick had you pegged.

Donkey is a NowThis sock?

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1 minute ago, gsoda3 said:

do you know if subsidies are usually calculated in per unit energy cost?  

Most likely not.  The majority of the subsidies are Income Tax Credits given to qualifying facilities.  And those generally go to offset the cost of building the unit.  

 

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How much of this is a failure of imagination?  Its clear that the tools available to mitigate this disaster were not sufficient as well as the scenario planning.  With the loss of generation, I cant help but think about the challenger o rings failure.  No getting around weather being one of, if arguably not the most significant variable driving demand, but in a world that is seeing much more extreme temperature on both ends, it seems clear that the current design has areas that need improvement.  I'm not sure a capacity market is a cure all, but definitely seems to be something that should have been implemented long ago.  

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6 minutes ago, PenelopeWitherspoon said:

Most likely not.  The majority of the subsidies are Income Tax Credits given to qualifying facilities.  And those generally go to offset the cost of building the unit.  

 

Also, to add on, I believe they also get some nice accelerated depreciation, so that also helps out.

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30 minutes ago, Gourmand said:

I'm not here to gum up this thread with facts about the energy industry; Penelope is putting on a clinic in that regard.

I'm just here to insult you for being such a goddamn moron as evidenced the parade of stupidity you've left in the CR. And it seems that [b]bama chick had you pegged.[/b]

Maybe that's his fetish.

Edited by Aqua Buddha
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1 minute ago, disgustipated said:

How much of this is a failure of imagination?  Its clear that the tools available to mitigate this disaster were not sufficient as well as the scenario planning.  With the loss of generation, I cant help but think about the challenger o rings failure.  No getting around weather being one of, if arguably not the most significant variable driving demand, but in a world that is seeing much more extreme temperature on both ends, it seems clear that the current design has areas that need improvement.  I'm not sure a capacity market is a cure all, but definitely seems to be something that should have been implemented long ago.  

Capacity market would be a good first step.  You also have to remove any price caps from the energy market itself (i.e. the 9,000 per hour cap that is in place now).  I would also like to see more ancillary services come online to help with these.  Customers could sell the right for ERCOT to take their energy offline in the case of a grid emergency.  These already exist in ERCOT (Balancing Up Loads), but I am not sure that individual retail customers can take advantage of this. I believe in PJM they can, so why not monetize that as much as possible.  Hell, individual houses (i.e. retail customers) who have distributed generation (i.e. solar panels or a wind turbine) and are producing more than they can consume should be able to sell into the grid as well (I know there was talk that they could, but I am not sure if they can actually).  

Texas as a state needs to start investing heavily into battery tech and energy storage research.  There is zero reason they should not be leading in this given their investment in wind.

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2 minutes ago, High Plains Drifter said:

 

I live in Texas, have solar panels, and sell back onto the grid any excess. My provider (Green Mountain) pays me the same rate that it charges me. My total electric bill last year was 7 dollars and change.

 

 

Just now, kevwun said:

I know someone who put in solar panels.  I do believe they sell excess power to their provider now.

Good to know.  I thought you were able to, but I wasn't 100% sure.  My dad has flirted with solar panels or a small wind turbine for years.  He has the perfect setup for it.

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