Governor of Texas Greg Abbott calls for ERCOT reform


Gov. Greg Abbott speaks at a press conference on Feb. 18, 2021, following a winter storm which knocked out power and water for millions of Texans. (Nexstar Photo/Wes Rapaport)

HOUSTON (CW39) The governor is suggesting reform for Texas power control ERCOT, because he says ERCOT claimed to be prepared for the possibility of mass power outages.

“We have already begun the process to make sure events never again happen in Texas and that starts with reforming the agency in charge of electric reliability in Texas which is ERCOT.”

He said he will work to make sure the events that occurred this week, won’t happen in the future.

“What happened this week is absolutely unacceptable and can never be replicated again,” the governor said.

He recapped a conversation he had five days prior to the first storm with came in Sunday night into Monday morning.

“They said [ERCOT] 5 days before the storm hit, the ERCOT CEO assured ERCOT and I quote ‘we’re ready for the cold temperatures coming our way’. The governor said ERCOT issued a notice to power plants to make sure they were winterized properly.” This came as an assurance Texans would not have the dealing of occurrences like mass lost of power to millions of homes statewide.

He wants answers. “Texans deserve answers about why these shortfalls occurred and how they’re going to be corrected and Texans will get those answers.”

“We got two things to look at. Is it true that ERCOT was on the verge of losing access to power in the grid? ~ Which could have caused a long term blackout in the state of Texas? If that’s not true, then there’s serious consequences because of that. If it is true, there’s serious action that needs to be taken by the state of Texas.” The governor is asking ERCOT to address winterization.

He is wanting to know what the power suppliers were really told. “We need to find out if the leaders of ERCOT sent the correct information to the generators of power in the state so that all generators of power in the state were up and running and prepared, so they wouldn’t get compromised.”

He is pursuing legislation in the form of executive order to adds investigation into companies in ERCOT’s position to prevent unaccountability.

“That’s exactly why I have issued an executive order that added emergency items to the legislative session asking the legislature to investigate what happened at ERCOT.”

He also wants to add more emergency items to meet the demand if this should happen again.

“I’m asking the legislature to mandate the winterization of generators and the power system,” he said. “I’m calling for the funding needed to make sure this winterization and modernization occurs” He’s now in talks with the chairs of relevant committees to make that happen.


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