Though Texas is a leading producer of electricity, it must be sold and moved to accommodate a growing state… so Texas needs to advance its transmission capabilities. Because transmission congestion, the lowest-priced electricity can’t reach customers during high-demand times or power outages. Congestion is an expensive problem and a hidden cost that consumers absorb in high electricity bills.
Congestion costs exceeded $2,000,000,000 in 2021. This year, congestion costs have already hit $800,000,000.
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We’re already mentioned that Texas surpasses every state in energy -> electricity production. In 2021, Texas produced 43% of all crude oil and 25% of all natural gas in the U.S., and produced 26% of its wind power. But unpredictable global economics, predictable population growth, and times of extreme weather can instigate sky-high electricity demand and strain the electrical grid. In some scenarios, unplanned outages can affect the entire integrated infrastructure, which depends heavily on electricity to operate: drinking water and internet or communications (i.e. medical devices) that depend on electricity.
The current situation suggests we continue to build out energy resources to respond to inflation or other global crisis. Politicians and policymakers have to embrace an “everything is on the table” approach to developing and dispersing the state’s resources. This means Texas must cut the red tape preventing the state from fully harnessing renewables like wind or extracting tried-and-true commodities like Permian Basin oil and gas. This also means embracing generation that uses less water, emphasizing the addition of battery storage to dispatch electricity on demand, and incenting businesses to choose Texas to develop new energy technologies.
Right now the state should not pit renewables against traditional fossil fuels or seek to replace one with the other. To generate electricity for residential, commercial, and industrial users, Texas should use natural resources plus renewable power generation to be successful. Some economic modeling has shown that fixing Texass power grid issues would result in massive economic, energy, and environmental benefits that include $11,000,000,000 in tax revenue and 25,300+ jobs.
Inadequate Electricity Transmission Will Make The Grid Less Reliable and Jack Up Electric Bills
The Texas economy will be in peril too. Providing affordable, lower-priced electricity and reliable power for homes, businesses, schools, and hospitals across the state must be an urgent priority. We an’t repeat this enough, it is crucial that legislators develop all energy resources synchronously while building out infrastructure (the grid!).