As if the power outages aren’t bad enough, a number of Texas locals are finding themselves with energy bills scaling well up into the thousand dollar mark. And it’s thanks to the State’s private power grid.
In case you didn’t know, part of the reason Texas is experiencing a power crisis right now is because they are one of the few states to have a privatized power grid. When electricity becomes non-government regulated, corners get cut and the systems in place forgo certain preventative measures, like winterizing.
It also means that Texas has one other unique trait: wholesale energy prices.
In most states, there is a government regulation on what you can charge per kilowatt of power. This is to prevent power companies in a monopoly position from up charging their rates. Since Texas has a privatized power grid, they aren’t subject to that restriction. This allows some locals to have variable or indexed power plans. While this CAN be a money saving alternative during low energy usage seasons like spring and fall, it also leads to higher rates during high demand.
With a winter wave having struck Texas, energy has never been more valuable. Numerous power sources aren’t functional, leaving those that are in higher demand. This led to the price per megawatt jumping as high as $9,000 recently.
As a result, those who still had power found themselves with extremely high energy bills, even when keeping their homes as cold as 60 degrees F. We’re talking about folks like Royce Pierce, who normally only owes $387 a month, now owing his power company $8,162.73
And they aren’t the only one, countless others are coming out to share their own price spikes, with bills ranging from $3,800 to as high as $17,000.
This is a perfect example of how unchecked capitalism will absolutely lead to an abuse of power. Mega corporations will squeeze a human life for every penny, and throw the corpse away when they’re done.
Our sympathies go out to anyone in this situation. We wish you the best.