"The temperatures went low enough to freeze gas/oil lines. Without gas/oil can’t produce electricity. Texas produces 80-90% of their energy from oil/gas."
I had intended to reply earlier, but every time I read the comment I rolled my eyes so hard they hurt. PLEASE, folks, don't just parrot the official lies back to me, OK? Because....
Natural Gas has a freezing point of -270 degrees F. That's 270 degrees BELOW zero. The lowest we, personally, got was -3.....which is a FAR cry from -270. (For funzies, I looked up the freezing point of oil.....-70 degrees F. Again, we didn't come CLOSE to that.)
"Oh," the commenter will say, "but but but WATER VAPOR in the lines!" Yeah, no. First off, if there is water vapor (or ANY contaminants) in the lines, the distributor should be fined and possibly shut down for quality control review. Water VAPOR has molecules that are spread apart, far enough that gas can still flow. If there is enough water to cause ice dams....well, we have more problems than just that.
Plus.....AK never has this problem. Or MI. Or ND. Or NE. Or - Freaking CANADA or RUSSIA.
Now, according to what I've been able to dig up, this was actually about "deregulation" (which isn't, really). See, in TX you can purchase your energy from a lot of companies - none of whom actually *produce* OR *deliver* the product. For example, Cirro Energy. Or Green Mountain. They purchase the energy from the "big boys" - Atmos and TXU (and probably others.) The energy is delivered to you in the SAME LINES it was delivered to you when you were with Atmos/other big boy. (What? You honestly didn't think that thru, did you? A lot of people don't - did you think Cirro was going to run a new gas/electric line to your house? No? Then.....who's actually PROVIDING you the energy?)
From what I've been able to gather, Cirro et al was/is buying electricity/gas at wholesale rates from Atmos (or maybe ERCOT itself - I can't tell if ERCOT is involved in the actual production, or just oversees it for a cut.), then turns around and sells it to the consumer for less than Atmos does to it's consumers. It looks like Cirro et al were charging around $0.02/kWh (from what some people are saying, anyway - we're on a Co-op, and all electric, so I have no dog in this fight).....until the storm hit, at which point the Public Utility Commission mandated a $9.00/kWh rate for "conservation purposes". The moment the storm lifted, the rate was dropped BACK DOWN to the $0.02/kWh.......
This has caused a lot of the "independents" to file/think about filing bankruptcy, because when you have consumers tied in to a rate of $.02, but you are being charged $9.00.......you legally can't pass that on. (And, again - it's the same damn gas. If you lost power, but your across-the-street neighbor didn't, you need to ask WHY. And who they pay. Because....the gas lines are owned/managed by the SAME DAMN COMPANY. You can't have frozen gas in your line when your neighbor doesn't.........)
(An aside, I don't fully understand kWh.....I was in the Industry for 20 years. Natural gas is bought/sold by the MCF (Million Cubic Feet), not kWh, so I am lost. Prices varied, in that 20 years, from $0.90/mcf to $5.00+/mcf, for the record. I don't understand the conversion, so.....:shrug:)
Also, I was told that I never lost electricity because I have solar. Um...sure, but none of my neighbors have solar, nor does my mother, and THEY never lost power. PLUS......solar can't be used directly from the panels, you have to have an inverter, which requires electricity to convert the solar produced power to "usable" power. It's why off-grid systems have storage batteries - to make sure the inverter can work. We aren't off-grid, we are grid-tied, because the difference in price was more than we wanted to pay.
Please, please, PLEASE people - use some common sense. If someone says the official story is setting off their BS meter, actually look into it (if you disagree) instead of just parroting back the media's spin. You can ignore the more "out there" stuff (HAARP, for example. I don't know anything about it, I don't feel like going down that rabbit hole, so I disregarded any mention of TX being HAARPed. May be true, may not - don't care. I researched the freezing point of natural gas first, then went from there. It didn't take that long, either.)