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Texas Narrowly Avoids Rolling Blackouts During Cold Snap

Linda Hardesty

Texas Energy ManageA group of electric generators in Texas took out a full-page advertisement in the Austin American-Statesman to inform the public that the Texas electric grid is in bad shape, according to an article in the New York Times.

During the extremely cold weather in Texas during early January, two North Texas power plants went offline nearly causing rolling blackouts. The event intensified a debate that’s been building in the state whether to build new power plants to increase capacity or instead to make stronger efforts to reduce energy use.  Low natural gas prices may have lessened the economic incentive to build new power plants, reports The NY Times.

Demand response is becoming more popular with industrial power users, and it is one way to ease the state’s capacity troubles. However, The NY Times reports that the growth of demand response is inhibited in Texas because the state’s grid operator does not allow most utilities to participate in the wholesale energy market.

Photo: Texas Longhorn via Shutterstock



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