- The Texas Public Utility Commission (PUC) is struggling about how to address concerns that the state's electricity reserves may not be adequate to support continued economic growth. A rolling blackout in 2011 is still fresh in the minds of regulators.
- At a hearing Tuesday, the PUC was urged by power providers such as Calpine and CPS Energy to rewrite the rules by which the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) manages the electricity market. They want to see a capacity market implemented whereby they would receive payments to help finance the construction of new power plants.
- But a capacity market is controversial. Industries and a coalition of Texas cities oppose it because of the added costs to consumers.
Concerns about power supply adequacy in Texas is nothing new. The state has been stubborn in insisting that it maintain a grid separate from the rest of the nation and the result is the peculiar set of market issues that could be easily solved by building lines to either the Eastern Interconnection or the Western Interconnection, where surplus power is plentiful.