By Mayes Middleton
Millions of Texans were without power for days, with lives lost and many more put at risk. The words anger and frustration do not do justice to what we are experiencing. Over the last several days, I have been working with CenterPoint, Entergy, and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) to improve our power situation in Galveston and Chambers Counties.
There are two major failures. First, ERCOT has clearly failed. Our state’s electrical grid operator has shown unparalleled incompetence during this critical time and Texans are paying the price. The “R” in “ERCOT” is for “reliability” and that did not happen.
Second, CenterPoint energy’s rolling blackouts were not made in a fair “pro-rata” manner. Instead, Galveston and Chambers Counties have disproportionately suffered. Centerpoint is in control of which areas are turned on and which aren’t. Overall, Galveston County was 88% out and the west side of Chambers County was 76% out, while Harris County was just 16% out at times. Some communities were hit even worse, Galveston and San Leon/Bacliff approached 100% outages. Centerpoint said 1.2 million of their 2.5 million customers were out and that only essential circuits were left on, so the question remains why are so many homes in Harris County on essential circuits and so few in our area?