Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said that “no one can guarantee” the state’s electrical grid won’t want planned power outages forward of inclement climate.
“No one can guarantee that there won’t be a load shed event,” Abbott said at a press convention.
The governor previously said that “everything that needed to be done was done to fix the power grid in Texas.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said “no one can assure” power outages won’t happen again as the state prepares for freezing and inclement weather, despite previous assurances the grid had been upgraded and fixed.
Abbott held a press conference on Tuesday alongside officials from the Public Utility Commission of Texas, Texas Department of Transportation, the Texas Division of Emergency Management, and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) to address the electrical grid’s reliability as part of the state prepares for freezing temperatures.
The National Weather Service warned of freezing rain and cold temperatures beginning Wednesday afternoon in central Texas, bringing at least 2 inches of sleet and snow with it.
And while the governor noted that each of the state’s agencies will be on call during the inclement weather to try and “robustly reply” to any needs during the freeze, he admitted he could not guarantee that “load shed” events will not occur.
A load shed event occurs when the demand for electricity outweighs the available supply, resulting in rolling blackouts as the operators of the electrical grid try to avoid the system’s collapse. Texans experienced load shedding on a large scale in 2021 when at least 2.8 million individuals went with out power throughout a lethal winter freeze that killed at least 246 people.
“No one can guarantee that there won’t be a load shed event,” Abbott said at the press convention. “But what we are going to work and attempt to attain — and what we’re ready to attain — is that the power’s going to remain on throughout the whole state.”
The governor noted that ERCOT should have 15,000 extra megawatts of extra power during peak demand as the cold weather approaches, which should theoretically be enough to tide over the excess demand.
Since the 2021 freeze, Texas legislators have passed legislation to make the state’s electrical grid more adaptable, leading the governor to declare that “all the things that wanted to be performed was performed to repair the power grid in Texas,” actions that some experts said was not sufficient.
“The similar factor may occur,” Curt Morgan, the CEO of Texas’ largest power distributor, Vistra, said in November.
Democratic candidate for governor, Beto O’Rourke, announced on Tuesday his plans to drive throughout the state to “hearken to and study from Texans who discovered a method to come by way of Abbott’s power grid disaster.”
In a press release from Abbott’s marketing campaign spokeswoman, Renea Eze, the marketing campaign panned O’Rourke’s planned occasion.
“While Beto is traversing the state rooting for the ache and struggling of fellow Texans, Governor Abbott has been working to strengthen the grid with the PUC, ERCOT, and the Legislature to make sure Texas stays a nationwide chief in vitality,” the launch said.
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