ERCOT Froze in February 2021. What Happened? Why Did It Happen? Can It Happen Again?
February 2, 2022 | Peter Hartley, Kenneth B. Medlock III, Shih Yu (Elsie) Hung
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A step-by-step examination of various factors that were blamed for the extended power outage on the ERCOT electricity grid in February 2021 reveals that no single factor fully explains the calamity. All forms of generation capacity experienced failures, but bureaucratic failure in identifying and addressing risks along fuel supply chains was a major failure. Moreover, most proposed remedies do not fundamentally address what occurred. Some may be driven by opportunistic lobbying. We make several recommendations, some of which are already being implemented.
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