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Author Topic: Texas in a state of emergency  (Read 2454 times)

JTHunter

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #100 on: February 21, 2021, 02:32:40 PM »

In some of the reports I heard, electricity was cut to certain oil & gas fields due to shortages.  This aggravated the problems as the oil & gas couldn't be pumped nor could the pipes be kept warm enough to prevent the oil from thickening in the cold.  This cut natural gas supplies to many locations, including power generating plants that use gas instead of coal.  A "double whammy" that screwed up everything.
Now they are finding that, without power, many of the refineries have had damage that will keep them off-line for weeks, causing gasoline supplies to drop drastically and prices per gallon to skyrocket.  In this area of IL-ANNOY near St. Louis, prices are already up to $2.799/gal., which have gone up over $0.25/gal in just the last 2 weeks.
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MechAg94

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #101 on: February 21, 2021, 02:35:33 PM »

I wasn't out of power as long as some people.  But I was out a full day and a couple evenings.  One thing I was thinking about was light.  I have a handful of the cheap LED lantern lights that were given to me as gifts.  Those came in real handy for general use and lighting the room.  A candle in the kitchen worked well, but not for detail stuff.

One thing that also occurred to me is the little cheap pocket flashlights I have were the most useful.  I have a few powerful high-lumen flashlights, but I rarely used them.  It was the small cheaper Olight I3T lights that I used since they were bright enough and I could put them in a jacket pocket or shirt pocket.   The high power lights didn't get used.

Pocket light.
https://www.olightstore.com/i3t-eos.html

LED Lantern.  This is just an example.  The cheap lanterns I have were a gift and they can switch to a red light mode.  They aren't good for reading by, but they light up the room pretty good.
https://www.amazon.com/WdtPro-Batteries-Collapsible-Waterproof-Flashlight/dp/B089RBWKVZ/ref=sr_1_9?dchild=1&keywords=LED+lantern&qid=1613935902&sr=8-9
“It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones.”  ― Calvin Coolidge

MechAg94

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #102 on: February 21, 2021, 02:37:59 PM »

In some of the reports I heard, electricity was cut to certain oil & gas fields due to shortages.  This aggravated the problems as the oil & gas couldn't be pumped nor could the pipes be kept warm enough to prevent the oil from thickening in the cold.  This cut natural gas supplies to many locations, including power generating plants that use gas instead of coal.  A "double whammy" that screwed up everything.
Now they are finding that, without power, many of the refineries have had damage that will keep them off-line for weeks, causing gasoline supplies to drop drastically and prices per gallon to skyrocket.  In this area of IL-ANNOY near St. Louis, prices are already up to $2.799/gal., which have gone up over $0.25/gal in just the last 2 weeks.

I am trying to make sure my truck fuel tank is topped off.  I also filled up a couple of 5 gallon cans as a backup.  Not sure we will have any temporary shortages, but we will see.  The price is up here as well. 
“It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones.”  ― Calvin Coolidge

HankB

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #103 on: February 21, 2021, 02:52:20 PM »

Got my first post office delivery in over a week on Saturday, 2/20/21.
Got a week's worth of newspapers late in the afternoon on the same day.
STILL have no landline phone, which went out on 2/10, just before the storm hit. AT&T has lied repeatedly about when it would be fixed. A tech actually called me on Friday, 2/19, and said he was on the way . . . then called again less than an  hour later to say that "management" had called back ALL phone techs. (Roads were pretty good by then - I know, I went out for a while.)
One good thing - I never lost power or water. My only really "vulnerable" pipes are the outside faucets; I'd put styrofoam insulators over them, and - with single digit temperatures predicted - put a 7 watt incandescent night light in each. Seemed to work just as expected - no frozen pipes.
Snow is all gone today, temperatures in 70s. Hope to get a tree service out here in the next week to deal with broken trees and tree limbs.

Yes, I know I was much, MUCH luckier than a LOT of my fellow Texans.
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bedlamite

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zxcvbob

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #105 on: February 21, 2021, 02:58:35 PM »

My parents are not on the Texas power grid; they are on a different Louisiana, Arkansas, and East Texas grid that I'd never heard of before.  Their power was out for about 14 hours during the worst of the storm, and my brother says by looking at the power company map (he had to goto the LA map and scroll west to get this info) it seemed to be a rolling blackout rather than lines down.  As soon as the power came on here another block somewhere else went down.  The power hasn't gone out since, and they never lost water pressure either.
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dogmush

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #106 on: February 21, 2021, 03:06:46 PM »

https://www.energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2021/02/f82/DOE%20202%28c%29%20Emergency%20Order%20-%20ERCOT%2002.14.2021.pdf

That order says that TX is allowed to exceed the pollution limits if needed.

That is the opposite of what social media is claiming.

zahc

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #107 on: February 21, 2021, 06:20:23 PM »

I wasn't out of power as long as some people.  But I was out a full day and a couple evenings.  One thing I was thinking about was light.  I have a handful of the cheap LED lantern lights that were given to me as gifts.  Those came in real handy for general use and lighting the room.  A candle in the kitchen worked well, but not for detail stuff.

One thing that also occurred to me is the little cheap pocket flashlights I have were the most useful.  I have a few powerful high-lumen flashlights, but I rarely used them.  It was the small cheaper Olight I3T lights that I used since they were bright enough and I could put them in a jacket pocket or shirt pocket.   The high power lights didn't get used.

Pocket light.
https://www.olightstore.com/i3t-eos.html

LED Lantern.  This is just an example.  The cheap lanterns I have were a gift and they can switch to a red light mode.  They aren't good for reading by, but they light up the room pretty good.
https://www.amazon.com/WdtPro-Batteries-Collapsible-Waterproof-Flashlight/dp/B089RBWKVZ/ref=sr_1_9?dchild=1&keywords=LED+lantern&qid=1613935902&sr=8-9

Honestly the walmart camping flashlights are really good in terms of $/lumens. They have $1 flashlights that honestly work great, and if you can spring for it they have some nicer ones for a couple bucks, lanterns included. LED technology has been really good to the very bottom of the line flashlights.
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Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #108 on: February 21, 2021, 07:03:50 PM »

I keep several of these around the house:

https://www.amazon.com/Onite-20-US24USB3W-WW-Warehouse-Emergency-WarmWhite/dp/B00QX096L0/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=usb+light+bulb&qid=1613952106&sr=8-3

I've had them for several years, and when I've had an outage, I've simply plugged them into one of the power bricks I also have laying around, and they light up the house almost like regular lighting.
"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."

WLJ

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #109 on: February 21, 2021, 07:43:13 PM »

Never Underestimate The Power Of The Stupid Side

Cliffh

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #110 on: February 21, 2021, 11:25:50 PM »

The local news is reporting that the state .gov has issued a moratorium on disconnecting energy services due to non-payment and that (temporarily) energy companies can't issue bills to customers.  The governor also said that people shouldn't have to pay such high energy bills (the mentioned $10k+) when they were without power for a couple days.

Bullshit.

Those customers signed a contract.  They were feeling good last year when they were paying less than others, now, when the pendulum swings the other way, they start whining & crying foul to anyone who'll listen.  The media's gotten wind of it and are now making a big deal of how the customers got screwed.

Bullshit.

Earlier I'd thought that ERCOT just didn't have the balls to tell the Feds to FO and crank up their plants - damn the pollution, full speed ahead!  With that DOE order, it sure seems as if they didn't even have to worry about the Feds.  I'm interested in hearing what other excuses their going to come up with.

Since the colds gone for now, I feel safe in saying that we didn't loose water or power this go-through.  And no busted pipes.  We haven't even had low water pressure like many now have. Guess we went through enough last time, the good Lord took pity on us this time.

Talked with the neighbor across the street this afternoon, they weren't quite as lucky.  The second plumber was leaving their place as I got home.  They'd had a busted pipe in the house early last week, had a guy out to fix it.  Then their supply line froze and broke under the house.  They had to wait for it to thaw to find the break.  Then neither they or the second plumber could find the shutoff valve, so he had to shut the water off at the street.  He'll be back later to trench and bury the new supply line that's running across their front yard. They're on 20 acres, the house is 75/80 yards from the street.

TommyGunn

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #111 on: February 22, 2021, 12:23:13 AM »

Geeesh.   How many people could afford a $10,000.oo monthly electric bill?   :O :facepalm:
MOLON LABE   "Through ignorance of what is good and what is bad, the life of men is greatly perplexed." ~~ Cicero

Cliffh

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #112 on: February 22, 2021, 12:32:04 AM »

Yep, it's going to hurt - for a long time.  With all the publicity, I'm betting the electric company, (Gritty?) will be willing to take payments.

They signed the contract, not under duress.  Most everyone understands a variable interest rate loan, well, that's what they signed up for, a variable rate for electricity.  Some months (most?) you're to the good, low payments.  Other times, the house wins.  And you pay big.

I heard rumors somewhere that the company sent out email notices - "The rates are going to go up, big time.  Quit us and sign on with someone else - NOW".  Not a lot of help since it usually takes 7 to 10 days to change suppliers, but folks (supposedly) get got a heads up.

I can agree with a payment plan.  But Not with a forgiveness plan.  And the .gov stepping in to tell the company how/when & potentially how much they can bill/collect from the customer just ain't right.

Nick1911

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #113 on: February 22, 2021, 08:22:34 AM »

Griddy is a service that allows end consumers to access electric power at wholesale rates.  They charge $9.99 per month to provide this service.  They do not make any money off the power that's being brokered and sold to end customers.

Griddy notes:
Quote
We pushed out an email as quickly as we could, suggesting that our members switch to another provider with a fixed rate. While we value our members, we want what is best for their wallet and family even more, even if that means helping them switch away to our competitors. Their well being is more important than our bottom line.

Frankly, their customers accepted the risk of being subject to market fluctuations by buying power wholesale.  If this was unacceptable, they could have paid a higher fixed rate, which is what most of us are stuck with anyway.

Further, they had advance notice of an extreme price hike coming, and presumably had access to real time pricing information.  In that moment, they chose not to snap their main breaker to avoid purchasing very expensive electricity.  They chose to consume it.

I find little fault with Griddy here.

Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #114 on: February 22, 2021, 08:35:26 AM »


Further, they had advance notice of an extreme price hike coming, and presumably had access to real time pricing information.  In that moment, they chose not to snap their main breaker to avoid purchasing very expensive electricity.  They chose to consume it.


This was my question. Did they have any idea of how high the KWH charge might go? Apparently they did. If this was a case where "fluctuation" was sold to them as something where the price might double, and then it went to this super high rate,  I would be looking at the power provider. If the customers knew full well the range of prices they might expect, and even had warning updates sent to them, then it all falls on the customer.

Personally, if I knew a fluctuating rate could fluctuate this much, I would never sign up for it. Too much like Vegas for me. At some point the house is going to win.
"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."

Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #115 on: February 22, 2021, 09:34:41 AM »

Some conflicting information regarding the DOE and Texas:

https://twitchy.com/samj-3930/2021/02/22/sick-damning-thread-exposes-the-absolute-disaster-bidens-admin-was-in-handling-deadly-texas-storm-with-receipts/

I will say that I agree with one of the commenters: Even if the DOE refused to allow requested oil and coal ramp ups, once things came down to endangerment of life, why not just tell the DOE to *expletive deleted*ck off, do what you need to do, and worry about the regulatory fallout (if there is any) later?
"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."

MechAg94

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #116 on: February 22, 2021, 09:55:09 AM »

Some conflicting information regarding the DOE and Texas:

https://twitchy.com/samj-3930/2021/02/22/sick-damning-thread-exposes-the-absolute-disaster-bidens-admin-was-in-handling-deadly-texas-storm-with-receipts/

I will say that I agree with one of the commenters: Even if the DOE refused to allow requested oil and coal ramp ups, once things came down to endangerment of life, why not just tell the DOE to *expletive deleted*ck off, do what you need to do, and worry about the regulatory fallout (if there is any) later?
Once the freeze was happening, there were probably other issues preventing them from starting them up.  It is likely something they would have to do ahead of time.  Going forward, it might be standard freeze preparation. 
“It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones.”  ― Calvin Coolidge

K Frame

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #117 on: February 22, 2021, 10:01:55 AM »

To be honest, I'm really surprised that the EPA didn't demand Texas outlaw use of fireplaces and the like during the crisis. Can't have that ramp up in air pollution, don't you know.

I've often said it, and this just cements it for me... Dems don't give a flying fig about the health, safety, or well being of individuals in crisis; it's nuanced as "the well being of all," which is complete and total crap as is shown in this case.
Carbon Monoxide, sucking the life out of idiots, 'tards, and fools since man tamed fire.

dogmush

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #118 on: February 22, 2021, 10:14:43 AM »

Some conflicting information regarding the DOE and Texas:

https://twitchy.com/samj-3930/2021/02/22/sick-damning-thread-exposes-the-absolute-disaster-bidens-admin-was-in-handling-deadly-texas-storm-with-receipts/

I will say that I agree with one of the commenters: Even if the DOE refused to allow requested oil and coal ramp ups, once things came down to endangerment of life, why not just tell the DOE to *expletive deleted*ck off, do what you need to do, and worry about the regulatory fallout (if there is any) later?

That Twitchy thread is Bullshit.  I don't know who amuse is, but he's purposely framing *expletive deleted*it to pretend something happened when it didn't.

Dipshit says:
Quote
Biden's EPA refused Governor Abbott's request and instead offered to allow certain power generation facilities a waiver if they raised the prices they charged to Texans to more than $1,500/MWh resulting in massive statewide power outages and a failure of the grid.

The actual DOE Emergency Order (which is linked above) says:
Quote
to minimize an increase in emissions available to support grid reliability:
(i) with respect to any Specified Resource that is an ERCOT Generation
Resource or Settlement Only Generator whose operator notifies ERCOT
that the unit is unable, or expected to be unable, to produce at its
maximum output due to an emission or effluent limit in any federal
environmental permit, ERCOT shall ensure that such Specified Resource
is only allowed to exceed any such limit during a period for which
ERCOT has declared an Energy Emergency Alert (EEA) Level 2 or Level
3. This incremental amount of restricted capacity would be offered at a
price no lower than $1,500/MWh.
Once ERCOT declares that such an
EEA Level 2 or Level 3 event has ended, the unit is required to
immediately return to operation within its permitted limits; and
(ii) with respect to any Specified Resource that is an ERCOT Generation
Resource whose operator notifies ERCOT that the unit is offline or would
need to go offline due to an emission or effluent limit in any federal
environmental permit, and to which ERCOT has issued a Reliability Unit
Commitment (RUC) instruction, the operator may make all of the unit’s
capacity available to ERCOT for dispatch during a period for which
ERCOT has declared an EEA Level 2 or Level 3. This incremental
amount of restricted capacity would be offered at a price no lower than
$1,500/MWh.
Once ERCOT declares that such an EEA Level 2 or Level 3
event has ended, the unit is required to immediately return to operating at
a level below the higher of its minimum operating level or the maximum
output allowable under the permitted limit.

That says that only the amount of electricity generated that exceeds the pollution thresholds will be charged at $1500/MWh.  (Which is $1.50/Kwh, or about 10x what TECO charges me for on peak electricity, not in an emergency)  The rest of the electricity that ERCOT is pumping into the grid can be charged at whatever they were charging before.  SO had they spun those coal and gas plants up in time, then customers would have had power, and would have paid pretty expensive, but not crippling, rates for whatever small portion of the total grid usage was responsible for exceeding pollution limits.  (i.e first 100KWh at $0.15/KWh, next 100KWh at $1.50/KWh)

We'll never know what the incremental amount would have been, because for whatever reason ERCOT didn't spin up the plants, even though they were clearly given a go ahead by the Feds.

Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #119 on: February 22, 2021, 10:28:13 AM »

To be honest, I'm really surprised that the EPA didn't demand Texas outlaw use of fireplaces and the like during the crisis. Can't have that ramp up in air pollution, don't you know.

Reading the DOE letter in the Twitchy link, it seemed to me that the number one concern for DOE was "environmental impact and pollution". IMHO, that should be the first thing DROPPED from consideration in an emergency.
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MechAg94

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #120 on: February 22, 2021, 10:30:14 AM »

So not complete BS, but not as bad as they are saying.   

I am curious if that price is something built into some statute or regulation or if it was something they came up with?  It would be better to simply give an end date to the waiver.
“It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones.”  ― Calvin Coolidge

K Frame

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #121 on: February 22, 2021, 11:22:03 AM »

Reading the DOE letter in the Twitchy link, it seemed to me that the number one concern for DOE was "environmental impact and pollution". IMHO, that should be the first thing DROPPED from consideration in an emergency.

Now how in the world does that contribute to the "greater good"?
Carbon Monoxide, sucking the life out of idiots, 'tards, and fools since man tamed fire.

charby

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #122 on: February 22, 2021, 12:41:27 PM »

So Touchstone energy is one of the energy groups that distributes power to a lot of the REC (Rural Electric Coops) and they had no problem firing up all the energy generators during the cold snap to dump electricity on the grid. We had several news articles about all the small towns/cities firing up jet fuel/natural gas turbines and diesel generators.

Webster City press release https://webstercity.com/2021/02/18/how-we-kept-your-lights-on/

Sounds like Texas had a lot of mismanagement going on with their utility people.



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Jim147

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #123 on: February 22, 2021, 01:34:35 PM »

Yeah even the old Electric City power plant got powered up last week around here.
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kgbsquirrel

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #124 on: February 22, 2021, 03:07:37 PM »

This was my question. Did they have any idea of how high the KWH charge might go? Apparently they did. If this was a case where "fluctuation" was sold to them as something where the price might double, and then it went to this super high rate,  I would be looking at the power provider. If the customers knew full well the range of prices they might expect, and even had warning updates sent to them, then it all falls on the customer.

Personally, if I knew a fluctuating rate could fluctuate this much, I would never sign up for it. Too much like Vegas for me. At some point the house is going to win.

No one would sign up if they were told their price would increase x100 in a pinch.
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