Texas Power Shortage

DBoon

Minister of Fire
Jan 14, 2009
1,233
Central NY
The supply/demand market is a viable option, and keeps government and tax payer dollars out of the energy market, allowing consumers to bear the true cost of the energy consumed. Our grid is reliable, and the supply and demand based market we have can, and does truly demonstrate that renewables can be built without subsidies and still be profitable. Our average pool price for 2020 was 4.5 cents/kwh, much below Texas (especially considering this is in CAD), my lights never went off last year, relating cheap electricity to unreliable electricity is a poor correlation. Relating government involvement to unreliability fits much better.
My core point is that the government in Texas is very proud to point to how little government involvement there is in Texas and then be shocked (shocked!) when things go horribly wrong with their electrical grid. And just a little bit of government involvement, as it sounds like you have in Alberta, can result in a far better market for consumers and much higher reliability, apparently (as you point out) with little to no impact on cost.
 

ABMax24

Minister of Fire
My core point is that the government in Texas is very proud to point to how little government involvement there is in Texas and then be shocked (shocked!) when things go horribly wrong with their electrical grid. And just a little bit of government involvement, as it sounds like you have in Alberta, can result in a far better market for consumers and much higher reliability, apparently (as you point out) with little to no impact on cost.
From what I see a lot of the issue comes in the form of which authority has jurisdiction. From what I can tell there are federal, and state level regulation on these facilities, compounded then with ERCOT tasked with the operation of these facilities and imposing some regulations of their own. I see a bunch of finger pointing in the months to come for who is to blame.

With the exception of stack emissions and carbon pricing, which fall under federal jurisdiction, our system is regulated by AESO. They are the one stop shop authority. If the province needs new generating capacity they seek out tenders and proposals for new capacity. If Alberta wants to increase its renewable generating capacity the Alberta government mandates the AESO to do so, AESO then offers contracts for the facilities to be built, reviewing and eventually having the best private proposals proceed.

I personally believe this to be the best system, it allows the most knowledgeable people in the field to make the decisions, instead of politicians pandering to the political flavor of the day.
 

Grizzerbear

Minister of Fire
Feb 12, 2019
912
SW Missoura
My wife's grandmother heats her house with a heat pump. She just called us yesterday evening and said that she had just opened her electric bill and it showed that she owed 900 and some odd dollars. YIKES!! Her normal bill runs around 150-200 in the winter. What's crazy is her power was shut off for a couple hours for two or three days during this billing cycle....part of a larger rolling blackout because of the energy demand and shortage. Now I don't have the same provider as her. She has liberty utilities and I'm on South West electric co-op. Liberty utilities is notoriously higher than Southwest and I mainly heat with wood so i'm not worried about my bill....but dang. I expect a lot of folks here around buffalo that are under Liberties service are to be sticker shocked in the coming weeks.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,372
Downeast Maine
My wife's grandmother heats her house with a heat pump. She just called us yesterday evening and said that she had just opened her electric bill and it showed that she owed 900 and some odd dollars. YIKES!! Her normal bill runs around 150-200 in the winter. What's crazy is her power was shut off for a couple hours for two or three days during this billing cycle....part of a larger rolling blackout because of the energy demand and shortage. Now I don't have the same provider as her. She has liberty utilities and I'm on South West electric co-op. Liberty utilities is notoriously higher than Southwest and I mainly heat with wood so i'm not worried about my bill....but dang. I expect a lot of folks here around buffalo that are under Liberties service are to be sticker shocked in the coming weeks.
I just watched the news report on the Texas state government putting a moratorium on disconnections due to non payment and stopping all billing. Seeing the countless videos of houses with ruptured pipes I just feel so bad for all those affected by the storm.
 

Grizzerbear

Minister of Fire
Feb 12, 2019
912
SW Missoura
I just watched the news report on the Texas state government putting a moratorium on disconnections due to non payment and stopping all billing. Seeing the countless videos of houses with ruptured pipes I just feel so bad for all those affected by the storm.
They need to. I can only imagine the the problems with busted pipes down there. They are woefully unprepared for such cold weather down their. A lot of houses are just built on cinder blocks with skirting....much like a trailer house. We were busy as hell thawing meters and shutting service off due to frozen and busted service lines here so I can't imagine the scale of problems down there. I bet the public entities have been working around the clock. Crappy deal down there.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,993
Northern NH
The was an article on Texas homeowners insurance I saw. They are already one of the highest states for homeowners insurance. Pure speculation is poor enforcement of building codes and standards is probably part of the mix. Much of Texas are boom towns spread over core cities with development pushed out to undeveloped counties and that is recipe for poor enforcement. Insurance companies were threatening to go even higher on rates and the state made some big changes to limit homeowner litigation and reduce payouts. No doubt this will raise the rates in the future.
 

jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
5,038
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
My wife's grandmother heats her house with a heat pump. She just called us yesterday evening and said that she had just opened her electric bill and it showed that she owed 900 and some odd dollars. YIKES!! Her normal bill runs around 150-200 in the winter. What's crazy is her power was shut off for a couple hours for two or three days during this billing cycle....part of a larger rolling blackout because of the energy demand and shortage. Now I don't have the same provider as her. She has liberty utilities and I'm on South West electric co-op. Liberty utilities is notoriously higher than Southwest and I mainly heat with wood so i'm not worried about my bill....but dang. I expect a lot of folks here around buffalo that are under Liberties service are to be sticker shocked in the coming weeks.
Check out this guy's bill
 

DBoon

Minister of Fire
Jan 14, 2009
1,233
Central NY
From what I can tell there are federal, and state level regulation on these facilities
Texas' electric grid is essentially not connected to other state grids. Therefore, since there is no interstate trade in electricity that is no federal regulation of the grid. It is completely a state-created issue. I also feel terrible for the people who have had this crisis inflicted on them, but they only have their state regulators to blame.
 
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jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
5,038
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
They may have done it to themselves on purpose, but that 'they' is the millionaires and billionaires who own utilities and lawmakers, not the poor schmucks who get $9/kwh electric bills.

Now they'll try to look like they're walking it back a little until it falls out of the news cycle, then it'll be back to figuring out how to simultaneously squeeze the little guy and make him scream and holler and vote for more. <>
 

ABMax24

Minister of Fire
Texas' electric grid is essentially not connected to other state grids. Therefore, since there is no interstate trade in electricity that is no federal regulation of the grid. It is completely a state-created issue. I also feel terrible for the people who have had this crisis inflicted on them, but they only have their state regulators to blame.
I'm no expert in US electricity regulation, nor do I care to attempt to interpret the mess that are most US regulations, so I'll take your word for it. That being said there are 5 active interconnects between Texas and neighboring states, and as of this moment 4 are transmitting electricity, surely federal regulation applies to this?


I feel bad for Texans, but some of these problems seem so obvious, at least when I live in a cold climate and expect these issues. Like seriously, who puts a water heater in an un-heated attic? How do water mains and fire hydrants freeze in a week long cold spell? Not putting anti-freeze in power plant cooling systems?

I feel this isn't a specific issue, it's a systematic design issue within many industries and disciplines in the southern states, this time it was ERCOT that got caught with their pants down.
 

DuaeGuttae

Minister of Fire
Oct 26, 2016
760
Texas
The was an article on Texas homeowners insurance I saw. They are already one of the highest states for homeowners insurance. Pure speculation is poor enforcement of building codes and standards is probably part of the mix. Much of Texas are boom towns spread over core cities with development pushed out to undeveloped counties and that is recipe for poor enforcement. Insurance companies were threatening to go even higher on rates and the state made some big changes to limit homeowner litigation and reduce payouts. No doubt this will raise the rates in the future.
I think your speculation is probably in part right. It was pretty shocking to move from Northern Virginia where I had to have a permit and inspection to change a ceiling fixture to an unincorporated part of a Texas county where there is no AHJ to do any inspections whatsoever. The ostensible reason, however, for the high homeowner's (and auto) insurance premiums is hail damage. There have been pretty costly storms in recent years, and insurance companies cite the high likelihood of hail storms as the reason for the rates.
 

DuaeGuttae

Minister of Fire
Oct 26, 2016
760
Texas
I feel bad for Texans, but some of these problems seem so obvious, at least when I live in a cold climate and expect these issues. Like seriously, who puts a water heater in an un-heated attic? How do water mains and fire hydrants freeze in a week long cold spell? Not putting anti-freeze in power plant cooling systems?
The thing is they seem obvious to you because you're used to freezing temperatures for long durations, but they really aren't obvious to people who don't have any other frame of reference. I moved to Texas a few years ago from "up North" (Virginia, which is still a southern state), and it's a whole different world down here. People look at me funny when I express displeasure about having water heaters and HVAC in unconditioned attics ("But where else do you put them?") They really can't imagine doing it differently because they've never seen anything different. Maybe because power has historically been cheap, energy efficiency just isn't as much of a thing down here.

I was shocked when shopping for houses that most didn't have gutters. To me that was the equivalent of not having windows or something, but gutters are a real-estate "upgrade" here. My husband and I have been slowing upgrading. Gutters were our summer project. My realtor down here was from this area and was really surprised to hear that gutters are taken for granted on most homes in Virginia. Gutters aren't exactly on topic, but it just stands out in my mind because of how shocked our realtor was by my perspective. A lot of perspective is based on experience, and I had never experienced houses with no gutters, and a lot of Texans haven't experienced cold like that before and definitely not for that duration.

I have limited experience living in Texas, and other parts of the state perhaps do things differently from how they do in my county (it's considered South or South central). At least here it's just a given that the air temperature may sink to freezing on occasion, but the ground just doesn't freeze. When it does freeze, it's short-lived, and everything warms up the next day. Attics don't freeze because of heat from the house. That definitely wasn't the case this time around, and I think it's great to be prepared as it may well happen more, but I can see how the average individual really wasn't going to be prepared for what just happened.
 
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ABMax24

Minister of Fire
The thing is they seem obvious to you because you're used to freezing temperatures for long durations, but they really aren't obvious to people who don't have any other frame of reference. I moved to Texas a few years ago from "up North" (Virginia, which is still a southern state), and it's a whole different world down here. People look at me funny when I express displeasure about having water heaters and HVAC in unconditioned attics ("But where else do you put them?") They really can't imagine doing it differently because they've never seen anything different. Maybe because power has historically been cheap, energy efficiency just isn't as much of a thing down here.

I was shocked when shopping for houses that most didn't have gutters. To me that was the equivalent of not having windows or something, but gutters are a real-estate "upgrade" here. My husband and I have been slowing upgrading. Gutters were our summer project. My realtor down here was from this area and was really surprised to hear that gutters are taken for granted on most homes in Virginia. Gutters aren't exactly on topic, but it just stands out in my mind because of how shocked our realtor was by my perspective. A lot of perspective is based on experience, and I had never experienced houses with no gutters, and a lot of Texans haven't experienced cold like that before and definitely not for that duration.

I have limited experience living in Texas, and other parts of the state perhaps do things differently from how they do in my county (it's considered South or South central). At least here it's just a given that the air temperature may sink to freezing on occasion, but the ground just doesn't freeze. When it does freeze, it's short-lived, and everything warms up the next day. Attics don't freeze because of heat from the house. That definitely wasn't the case this time around, and I think it's great to be prepared as it may well happen more, but I can see how the average individual really wasn't going to be prepared for what just happened.
I get that, and maybe it shouldn't be up to the homeowners, those that write and enforce the code should maybe have some foresight on these events too. I know we have a lot of items written in building codes to cover improbable events, never the less they are still there, and costs are incurred every year by builders to follow them.

I would be quite surprised if there aren't changes to the Texas building code out of this. There will be a lot of head scratching and rethinking on part of many agencies. As we say at work, "lessons cost money, the best ones cost lots".
 

stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
501
Eastern Long Island NY
... they really aren't obvious to people who don't have any other frame of reference. ....
They really can't imagine doing it differently because they've never seen anything different.
Having lived in different states, countries, continents, one can see that some places are less used to look at other places with an open mind than other places...

It is the willingness to learn, the willingness to accept that maybe others have it figured out in a better way that is in short supply in most of these situations.

And yes, then there is the cost aspect, where small government (not inspecting, not imposing code), implies that the cost of mitigatable risks is rolled onto the less-governed (or "more free") people - that, evidently, then complain when that cost comes knocking on the door...
 
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SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,372
Downeast Maine
I'm no expert in US electricity regulation, nor do I care to attempt to interpret the mess that are most US regulations, so I'll take your word for it. That being said there are 5 active interconnects between Texas and neighboring states, and as of this moment 4 are transmitting electricity, surely federal regulation applies to this?


I feel bad for Texans, but some of these problems seem so obvious, at least when I live in a cold climate and expect these issues. Like seriously, who puts a water heater in an un-heated attic? How do water mains and fire hydrants freeze in a week long cold spell? Not putting anti-freeze in power plant cooling systems?

I feel this isn't a specific issue, it's a systematic design issue within many industries and disciplines in the southern states, this time it was ERCOT that got caught with their pants down.
You are absolutely right about the Southeast, but it also applies to everywhere else in the US as well. OSHA and other regulatory bodies exist, but none of them actually enforce anything. I haven't lived in Canada, but in the US a lot of people will look the other way, especially if money is involved. I experienced this in Italy, the UK, Germany, and every other European country I've been to/lived in, so I can only assume Canada is the same way.
 

Brian26

Minister of Fire
Sep 20, 2013
574
Branford, CT
So in Texas when prices hit like $9k a mwh that is passed on directly to rate payers?

Here in New England during high demand in summer prices will skyrocket as well from like $100 mwh to $1k. I have never heard of anyone paying that rate. Your price is the same year round.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,372
Downeast Maine
So in Texas when prices hit like $9k a mwh that is passed on directly to rate payers?

Here in New England during high demand in summer prices will skyrocket as well from like $100 mwh to $1k. I have never heard of anyone paying that rate. Your price is the same year round.
I think they are on a variable rate plan in Texas, which is to say the costs are pushed to the consumer. In New England we just pay high rates all the time regardless of energy spikes.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,993
Northern NH
That depends on what state in New England you live in

California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Texas were the only deregulated states in 2017 (the most recent list I found quickly). People in the other regulated states do not understand what the fuss is about as their states set the costs and there is no consumer competition. Deregulation was a key part of the "Reagan revolution" but when California had the Enron assisted power debacle, many states pulled back from it. So someone in Vermont and a lot of other states doesnt have the option to buy from a competitive supplier. They pay more but are isolated from extreme events.

The basis for deregulation is to split the power cost from the transmission cost. That doesnt work if the utility owns the power plants so the utilities had to sell their power plants to private entities. Most if not all states required utilities to offer a "standard offer" to residential customers to keep it simple. These standard offers are usually fixed power rates for either an entire year or sometimes a winter and summer period. The utility signs a contract for guaranteed fixed price power. The firms selling the power has to supply power at this price, if they do not there are contractual penalties but the devil is in the details. That fixed cost for power is a risk on the seller so they price in that risk . The ratepayers may object to these high rates for risk free power so someone in the chain will suggest "sharing that risk" between the parties. The firms running that standard offer are regulated utilities and they are guaranteed a profit so any risk they share ultimately gets handed to the ratepayer base.

So with deregulation all sorts of competitive suppliers will pop up to sell power for what they represent is less than the standard rate. Many offer teaser rates and fine print. To an uneducated consumer that fine print can be a big problem. In the case of the lowest cost supplier in Texas their business model is act as broker between the consumer and the wholesale power market. They just charge a fee to act as broker so the consumer owns all risk with varying power prices. The prices are usually lower and the consumer forgets about the risk as 95% of the time they are saving money. In this case the risk was quite large for what was a event that was probably in the .001% range. This willing acceptance of risk is now coming back to the person who took on the risk and they do not like it. No one forced them to sign the deal. So the political approach is raise public outrage, and then demand the evil companies eat the high prices while offering the same evil companies some back room deal to get reimbursed with public funds. Lawyers will also go for class action saying that the offers did not have adequate disclosures in their publicity of the risks.

The state of Maine has been doing a study of their competitive power market versus the standard offer contracts and they keep coming to the conclusion that the private competitive rate plans cost the consumers more in the long run. Consumers sign up for teaser rates but inevitably the rates go up. The biggest supplier has been caught and fined for several consumer violations but they are glad to pay the fines as their profit exceeds the cost of the fines.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,372
Downeast Maine
That depends on what state in New England you live in

California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Texas were the only deregulated states in 2017 (the most recent list I found quickly). People in the other regulated states do not understand what the fuss is about as their states set the costs and there is no consumer competition. Deregulation was a key part of the "Reagan revolution" but when California had the Enron assisted power debacle, many states pulled back from it. So someone in Vermont and a lot of other states doesnt have the option to buy from a competitive supplier. They pay more but are isolated from extreme events.

The basis for deregulation is to split the power cost from the transmission cost. That doesnt work if the utility owns the power plants so the utilities had to sell their power plants to private entities. Most if not all states required utilities to offer a "standard offer" to residential customers to keep it simple. These standard offers are usually fixed power rates for either an entire year or sometimes a winter and summer period. The utility signs a contract for guaranteed fixed price power. The firms selling the power has to supply power at this price, if they do not there are contractual penalties but the devil is in the details. That fixed cost for power is a risk on the seller so they price in that risk . The ratepayers may object to these high rates for risk free power so someone in the chain will suggest "sharing that risk" between the parties. The firms running that standard offer are regulated utilities and they are guaranteed a profit so any risk they share ultimately gets handed to the ratepayer base.

So with deregulation all sorts of competitive suppliers will pop up to sell power for what they represent is less than the standard rate. Many offer teaser rates and fine print. To an uneducated consumer that fine print can be a big problem. In the case of the lowest cost supplier in Texas their business model is act as broker between the consumer and the wholesale power market. They just charge a fee to act as broker so the consumer owns all risk with varying power prices. The prices are usually lower and the consumer forgets about the risk as 95% of the time they are saving money. In this case the risk was quite large for what was a event that was probably in the .001% range. This willing acceptance of risk is now coming back to the person who took on the risk and they do not like it. No one forced them to sign the deal. So the political approach is raise public outrage, and then demand the evil companies eat the high prices while offering the same evil companies some back room deal to get reimbursed with public funds. Lawyers will also go for class action saying that the offers did not have adequate disclosures in their publicity of the risks.

The state of Maine has been doing a study of their competitive power market versus the standard offer contracts and they keep coming to the conclusion that the private competitive rate plans cost the consumers more in the long run. Consumers sign up for teaser rates but inevitably the rates go up. The biggest supplier has been caught and fined for several consumer violations but they are glad to pay the fines as their profit exceeds the cost of the fines.
The Maine system was a big shock having moved here from NC, which doesn't have the best reputation for their power companies either.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,993
Northern NH
The Maine system was a big shock having moved here from NC, which doesn't have the best reputation for their power companies either.
If you are in eastern maine, its the backwaters of the power market.
 
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jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
5,038
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
The thing is they seem obvious to you because you're used to freezing temperatures for long durations, but they really aren't obvious to people who don't have any other frame of reference. I moved to Texas a few years ago from "up North" (Virginia, which is still a southern state), and it's a whole different world down here. People look at me funny when I express displeasure about having water heaters and HVAC in unconditioned attics ("But where else do you put them?") They really can't imagine doing it differently because they've never seen anything different. Maybe because power has historically been cheap, energy efficiency just isn't as much of a thing down here.

I was shocked when shopping for houses that most didn't have gutters. To me that was the equivalent of not having windows or something, but gutters are a real-estate "upgrade" here. My husband and I have been slowing upgrading. Gutters were our summer project. My realtor down here was from this area and was really surprised to hear that gutters are taken for granted on most homes in Virginia. Gutters aren't exactly on topic, but it just stands out in my mind because of how shocked our realtor was by my perspective. A lot of perspective is based on experience, and I had never experienced houses with no gutters, and a lot of Texans haven't experienced cold like that before and definitely not for that duration.

I have limited experience living in Texas, and other parts of the state perhaps do things differently from how they do in my county (it's considered South or South central). At least here it's just a given that the air temperature may sink to freezing on occasion, but the ground just doesn't freeze. When it does freeze, it's short-lived, and everything warms up the next day. Attics don't freeze because of heat from the house. That definitely wasn't the case this time around, and I think it's great to be prepared as it may well happen more, but I can see how the average individual really wasn't going to be prepared for what just happened.
I have lived in southern Georgia twice, and I've never seen a water heater in an attic... (HVAC, yes.) Is it really common there?

Forget cold temperature, what happens when the tank rusts out, or the expansion tank is insufficient? Do they install them on shower pans and run a drain line?

If you don't have it contained and drained, common sense says that you will eventually get a $10,000 repair and mold remediation bill from a $300 appliance just due to normal water heater life cycle issues.
 
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jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
5,038
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
That depends on what state in New England you live in

California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Texas were the only deregulated states in 2017 (the most recent list I found quickly). People in the other regulated states do not understand what the fuss is about as their states set the costs and there is no consumer competition. Deregulation was a key part of the "Reagan revolution" but when California had the Enron assisted power debacle, many states pulled back from it. So someone in Vermont and a lot of other states doesnt have the option to buy from a competitive supplier. They pay more but are isolated from extreme events.

The basis for deregulation is to split the power cost from the transmission cost. That doesnt work if the utility owns the power plants so the utilities had to sell their power plants to private entities. Most if not all states required utilities to offer a "standard offer" to residential customers to keep it simple. These standard offers are usually fixed power rates for either an entire year or sometimes a winter and summer period. The utility signs a contract for guaranteed fixed price power. The firms selling the power has to supply power at this price, if they do not there are contractual penalties but the devil is in the details. That fixed cost for power is a risk on the seller so they price in that risk . The ratepayers may object to these high rates for risk free power so someone in the chain will suggest "sharing that risk" between the parties. The firms running that standard offer are regulated utilities and they are guaranteed a profit so any risk they share ultimately gets handed to the ratepayer base.

So with deregulation all sorts of competitive suppliers will pop up to sell power for what they represent is less than the standard rate. Many offer teaser rates and fine print. To an uneducated consumer that fine print can be a big problem. In the case of the lowest cost supplier in Texas their business model is act as broker between the consumer and the wholesale power market. They just charge a fee to act as broker so the consumer owns all risk with varying power prices. The prices are usually lower and the consumer forgets about the risk as 95% of the time they are saving money. In this case the risk was quite large for what was a event that was probably in the .001% range. This willing acceptance of risk is now coming back to the person who took on the risk and they do not like it. No one forced them to sign the deal. So the political approach is raise public outrage, and then demand the evil companies eat the high prices while offering the same evil companies some back room deal to get reimbursed with public funds. Lawyers will also go for class action saying that the offers did not have adequate disclosures in their publicity of the risks.

The state of Maine has been doing a study of their competitive power market versus the standard offer contracts and they keep coming to the conclusion that the private competitive rate plans cost the consumers more in the long run. Consumers sign up for teaser rates but inevitably the rates go up. The biggest supplier has been caught and fined for several consumer violations but they are glad to pay the fines as their profit exceeds the cost of the fines.
Long Island is an area of New York. So in theory there's little in the way of regulation, but it's an island, and the local deregulated operator is also a complete monopoly... you cannot choose between power companies in any way, shape, or form.

Also, as is traditional for local enterprises, it is chummy with the highly corrupt local politicians, and as such charges astounding rates and still "loses" money every year.

If you're thinking that I am an embittered local exaggerating for dramatic effect... well, here is a screenshot showing their understanding of what the purpose of their business is (from their 2020 SEC filing):


SmartSelect_20210223-113304_Drive.jpg

In English: "We take huge losses so that our highly dubious personal investments don't lose money, and use that money to buy politicians to prop up the utility business that we just looted, so the taxpayers can have rates double the national average AND pay for our thievery in their tax bills. Every time this generates outrage we will shout bankruptcy and sell out to a different LLC and probably not even have to rearrange our pencil drawers, let alone move offices.")
 

walhondingnashua

Feeling the Heat
Jul 23, 2016
350
ohio
Here we see just another example of the cost of climate change. I live in the middle of natural gas world and have family members in the natural gas industry. I have mentioned before that we are getting new schools built from a tax abatement on a very clean natural gas power plant. So I hear plenty about how "Going Green" and how "The Tree Huggers" are going to kill the economy. I am more than empathetic because I can see the worry on my in-laws faces now there is an administration that with a different perspective. BUT...

the financial costs of natural disasters are skyrocketing . All of the increased flooding in the south, increase in tornados, a close to 0% agricultural yield in South Dakota in 2019 because of flooding and now this unique event in Texas. Insurance companies are big business too. We are about to see a fight between 2 major economic and political players (fossil fuel vs insurance) the average American is going to be a pawn in the game.
 

ABMax24

Minister of Fire
Here we see just another example of the cost of climate change. I live in the middle of natural gas world and have family members in the natural gas industry. I have mentioned before that we are getting new schools built from a tax abatement on a very clean natural gas power plant. So I hear plenty about how "Going Green" and how "The Tree Huggers" are going to kill the economy. I am more than empathetic because I can see the worry on my in-laws faces now there is an administration that with a different perspective. BUT...
I work in the natural gas industry as well, and I've thought the same. Reality is we can't replace it yet, and there's a lot of talk in Canada about using natural gas to produce hydrogen, and storing the carbon underground in the form of CO2. I'm not too concerned about my job yet, events like what has happened it Texas prove this more than ever. The vast majority of electrical systems rely on fossil fuels for backup when the sun don't shine and the wind don't blow. Those fuels have to come from somewhere.

Maybe the US can subsidize it's way to 100% renewable energy, but at the rate the Federal Reserve is printing money the US will cause another financial crisis in the process.
 
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