Officials: Texas Gas & Coal Plants Caused Issue, Not Wind Turbines
It made for good headlines..."Frozen Wind Turbines" cause power outages in Texas. But it turns out, that wasn't the case.
As officials start to examine this black-eye to Texas' energy image, they're starting to find details that make the situation appear worse. Instead of the "frozen wind turbines", Dan Woodfin, the Senior Director for the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, says it was problems with natural gas, coal, and nuclear facilities that have led to the power issues across the state.
Woodfin says that frozen instruments at the natural gas, coal, and nuclear plants were responsible for many problems. He adds that limited supplies of natural gas have contributed heavily to these issues.
As more and more info is coming out about what's happening in Texas, more experts are pointing fingers away from "frozen wind turbines", and back on traditional energy sources. Daniel Cohan, Associate Professor of Environmental Engineering at Rice University, said blaming this energy crisis on wind turbines is a "red herring". He told Fortune:
“The performance of wind and solar is way down the list among the smaller factors in the disaster that we’re facing”
With blame now being turned to the traditional backbone of the energy industry (oil and gas) instead of wind energy, many are openly talking about investigations into ERCOT and energy providers across the state. This even includes Texas Governor Greg Abbot, who released a statement that said:
“The Electric Reliability Council of Texas has been anything but reliable over the past 48 hours...Far too many Texans are without power and heat for their homes as our state faces freezing temperatures and severe winter weather. This is unacceptable."
In addition to the Governor's statement, Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan is currently working to investigate the situation through the House Energy Resources Committee, as well as the joint state legislature.