Gas makes up half of power generation in Texas and HALF closed. Capitalism doesn’t invest in resilience: Texas and California built different power grids, but neither stood up to climate change

Gas made up 48% of power generation in TX (or 51% by other accounts) and half was off-line. The majority of ERCOT’s winter peaking capacity relies on natural gas-fired power, and in total gas makes up 47.45% of the grid operator’s generation footprint. At its peak, 52,277 MW of the grid operator’s 107,514 MW in installed capacity fell offline or …

A primary justification for fuel-dependent generation is its theoretical ability to generate regardless of the weather but over 40% of the coal, gas, & nuclear fleet are offline due to the cold in TX

Excerpt, RMI, 2/18/21… Wind turbine icing is the “least significant factor” in driving the outages, according to an ERCOT spokesperson. Additionally, it is notable that this is a relatively straightforward problem to solve. For example, in Canada “cold weather packages” allow wind turbines to operate in very low temperatures. Moreover, grid planners know and expect that wind power is often unavailable during system …

California’s Plan: Crowdsource Distributed Energy to Replace Grid Upgrades

The Partnership Pilot could start to enroll solar, batteries, EVs and other behind-the-meter assets as non-wires alternatives later this year. By Jeff St. John, GreenTechMedia, Feb 5, 2021 California regulators are planning a new approach to enlisting behind-the-meter batteries, solar, electric vehicles and other assets to replace grid upgrades. 1 California’s investor-owned utilities have argued against this approach. In comments …

Coal capacity factors have been falling – below 30% last spring. Coal continues to operate because regulatory systems are protecting operators over consumers, all breathing air

Coal capacity factors have been falling – below 30 percent last spring, which is astonishingly low. Why are they not closing even faster than they are? Many of the remaining coal plants are able to keep operating because they are in states or regions with regulatory systems that force consumers to cover the costs. For utilities in those states, it …

Grid map requirements to ease solar integration

California regulators modify grid map requirements to ease solar integration By David Wagman on Feb 1 2021 The California Public Utilities Commission ordered several key improvements to the Integration Capacity Analysis, a grid transparency tool. The motion requesting the changes that the CPUC responded to was filed last October by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, the California Solar & Storage …

Climate inaction could put utilities in legal peril: New report warns that climate resilience planning could have legal implications for many utility companies

By Niina H. Farah December 22, 2020 Power companies may soon find themselves in legal trouble if they don’t protect their operations and infrastructure against flooding, severe storms and other climate impacts, legal experts say. Not only could utilities face challenges if they fail to account for rising global temperatures in rate proceedings before state commissions, but they could also …

Utility greenwashing: Xcel Energy received a score of 41 out of 100 and a grade of C. The data notes Xcel intends to retire 65% of its coal capacity by 2030

Sierra Club says the companies it looked at account for 68% of the United States’ remaining coal generation — yet those utilities have plans to retire only a quarter of that capacity by 2030 By Robert Walton@TeamWetDog on Utility Dive, Jan. 26, 2021 Despite setting goals to decarbonize their resource mix, many utility pledges amount to little more than “meaningless …

Facebook as a regulated utility?

Excerpt from Steven Hill, Should President Biden Revoke Section 230? https://www.laprogressive.com/revoke-section-230/ Jan 2021 Facebook is no longer simply a “social networking” website – it is the largest media giant in the history of the world, a combination publisher and broadcaster with approximately 2.6 billion regular users, plus billions more on the Facebook-owned WhatsApp and Instagram. A mere 100 pieces of COVID-19 …

Nevada climate strategy outlines framework to phase out natural gas, electrify transportation

17 core policies analyzed in the report, the state established a framework that looked at each recommendation using four metrics: a policy’s potential for decreasing emissions, climate justice considerations, economic implications and the legal feasibility of implementing a policy. For the first time, it points policymakers beyond electricity, calling on them to phase out natural gas in buildings.  The climate strategy …