Austin, Texas – Recent Survey by the Census Bureau Estimate About 7.5 million Texans have had to cut back on essentials like medicine and food to pay their utility bills. Some cannot pay at all.
After severe winter storms killed hundreds in 2021, the Texas Legislature and Public Utilities Commission (PUC) made changes to how the power grid operates. This included requirements for power plants to weather equipment and impose penalties for non-compliance.Texans have been unhappy with price increases since summerAccording to experts, consumers pay the price Because of the so-called “trust”, such a tragedy will never happen again.
“Texas, and its electricity market in particular, has been mismanaged for more than two decades,” said Ed Haas, an energy fellow at the University of Houston. , has focused on providing the lowest cost, which has come at the expense of maintenance of facilities and maintenance of capital, which will have to pay to rebuild the grid in Texas in the years to come. I will have to.”
Texans are shelling out even more cash due to higher interest rates from local providers and higher natural gas prices. Haas’ wallet hurts too.
“Last year, our monthly electricity bill might have been $125. Today, it’s $190,” says Hirs.
Prices are going up because of the economy.
“There is inflation that is driving up some of the fuel costs that are driving prices higher,” said Dr. Emily Beagle, research associate at Weber Energy Group. Nowadays, people will consume more electricity to heat their homes, otherwise they will consume more electricity compared to the shoulder month from summer to the present situation. Hopefully, [prices] come down. But that cost is hard to say as it depends heavily on many other external factors. ”
Dr. Beagle added that there are several possible solutions.
“By increasing the amount of renewable power we are producing in the state, we can reduce these costs and keep them low in the future, saving Texas money,” Dr. Beagle said. “We also need to build more transmission lines so that we can use all the power delivered where it is needed.”
The PUC blamed rising energy prices for rising natural gas prices. The Texas Electricity Reliability Council (ERCOT) added that this summer’s extreme heat has also played a part in the costs of running the grid conservatively.
Texans can try to lower their costs by saving energy. Hirs and Dr. Beagle recommend that consumers adjust their thermostats and add insulation as needed.
http://www.spectrumlocalnews.com/tx/austin/politics/2022/11/17/texans-cut-spending-on-necessities-to-pay-energy-bills Texas people cut spending on essentials to pay energy bills