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Texas Grid Operator ERCOT Overcharged Electric Utility Companies


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The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) made a $16 billion pricing billing during the winter storm that caused power outages across the state, its market monitor Potomac Economics reported.

The firm said ERCOT kept service prices high for nearly two days after the outages and recommended that the values be corrected and the $16 billion cost overrun be reversed.

In the state, the cost of energy is determined according to supply and demand. If demand is high, the company allows prices to rise so that power generators can add more energy to the state grid. In addition, the cost allows them to buy more energy in the wholesale market.

Not too long ago, five members of the company’s board resigned amid growing criticism for their role in the state’s massive electricity blackout.

During the winter storm, the grid allowed the cost to be set at the maximum of $9,000 per megawatt hour. Because ERCOT failed to lower prices in time, companies had to buy power on the market at extremely high prices.

The error also led several utilities such as EDF Renewable Energy and Just Energy to ask the Public Utilities Commission to restore prices, and others have asked regulators to waive their payments until the problem is resolved.

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