Feb 1, 2022 – Looking back on the Reforming Texas’ electric power sector when the 87th Legislature convened in Jan 2021, preparing for a winter storm was not in the agenda. This changed almost two months later after the devastation caused by Winter Storm Uri. The winter storm showed us weaknesses in our state’s power grid and its regulatory framework. Luckily, there was enough time for Law makers to turn up the gears and pass the bills needed to respond to the storms impact.

Although Texas lawmakers were hammered publicly for ignoring the warnings of a storm in 2011, they passed a piece of legislation that requires power plants to “weatherize” their premises to ensure they can withstand critical weather conditions. This was then left up to the Public Utility Commission of Texas to deal with. They regulate utilities and the designing of the weatherization for power plants. The Texas Railroad Commission was also left to deal with this, where they will regulate the state’s oil and gas industry.

With Gov. Greg Abbot promising Texans that we will not have any issues keeping the power on this winter, we are left a little skeptical on how prepared the Texas Government is. This comes after Abbot signed Senate Bill 2 and 3, which requires powerplants to prepare their facilities to withstand extreme weather. We need more to be done at a quicker rate the we head in to full on winter season, which means we need more from the public to speak about their experiences and suggestions to what needs to be done.

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