Gov. Greg Abbott calls for investigation of ERCOT, Texas' electric reliability council

Many in Texas are battling power outages amid frigid temperatures. (Courtesy Rico Daniels)
Many in Texas are battling power outages amid frigid temperatures. (Courtesy Rico Daniels)

Many in Texas are battling power outages amid frigid temperatures. (Courtesy Rico Daniels)

Gov. Greg Abbott is calling for an investigation into the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, or ERCOT, due to statewide outages that have caused millions of Texans to lose power amid frigid temperatures.

ERCOT operates the state's electric grid and manages about 90% of the state's electric load. The nonprofit is governed by a board of directors, and it is subject to oversight by the Public Utility Commission of Texas and the Texas Legislature.

As of 1:20 p.m., over 4 million customers were out of power, according to ERCOT, which tracks about 12.5 million customers.

On Feb. 16, Abbott declared the reform of ERCOT an emergency item this legislative session, which means the Legislature must investigate the entity to "ensure Texans never again experience power outages on the scale they have seen over the past several days," according to a news release from Abbott's office.

“The Electric Reliability Council of Texas has been anything but reliable over the past 48 hours,” Abbott said. “Reviewing the preparations and decisions by ERCOT is an emergency item so we can get a full picture of what caused this problem and find long-term solutions."


State Rep. Vikki Goodwin, D-Austin, tweeted just hours after Abbott's announcement that the State Affairs Committee and Energy Resources Committee will hold a hearing with ERCOT on Feb. 25.




By Eva Vigh
Eva Vigh joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2018 as a reporter for Spring and Klein. Prior to this position, she covered upstream oil and gas news for a drilling contractors' association.