Crisis in Texas 2021

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Kaitzilla, Feb 18, 2021.

  1. Kaitzilla

    Kaitzilla Lord Croissant

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    5 days without power for 1 million Texans.
    Below freezing the entire time.

    100's in the hospital for carbon monoxide poisoning trying to keep warm.
    https://www.npr.org/sections/live-u...-monoxide-poisoning-cases-are-surging-in-texa
    People eating snow because all the pipes burst and there is no water.

    Senator Ted Cruz on vacation in Cancun, Mexico. :undecide:

    I think it has reached a crisis down there.
    Biden has just declared a state of emergency.
    https://kvia.com/news/texas/2021/02...cy-in-texas-fema-sending-generators-supplies/

    Did a warm air mass shove all the frozen air over Canada onto us or something?

    Why did the natural gas wellheads freeze up?
    Can't they pump natural gas by burning natural gas?

    Looks like even a nuclear power plant had to shut down 50%
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2021
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  2. innonimatu

    innonimatu Deity

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    Didn't notice there was a thread on this. Apparently it's profitable to have power cuts!

     
  3. Kaitzilla

    Kaitzilla Lord Croissant

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    I wish I knew how electricity bill prices worked.

    Is everyone in Texas going to get a $1500 electricity bill at the end of the month?


    Also, this picture of empty offices and parking garages while the poor areas elsewhere are dark is sad. :sad:
    https://www.click2houston.com/news/...ston-lit-up-during-major-winter-power-outage/

    Lexicus had a great post on the Texas power grid.
    Global warming strikes again...
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2021
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  4. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

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    Let's not get carried away. This storm has been referred to as equal to a class five hurricane. In some ways it's even worse, because of the shear scale. However, it's only a natural disaster when all is over.

    Tomorrow the sun will come out and the ice will started to melt in earnest. By Monday, most things will be back to COVID normal.

    J
     
  5. innonimatu

    innonimatu Deity

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    Apart from the pipes leaking everywhere...
     
  6. Kaitzilla

    Kaitzilla Lord Croissant

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    Sure, but the water pipes.

    Electricity keeps the heater on which keeps the pipes from freezing and bursting.

    What if Texas thaws out and has tons of burst water pipes?
    https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/texas-contending-water-nightmare-top-power-crisis-n1258208
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2021
  7. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    That's what you call effective problem solving and leadership. They've got power in Mexico, so relocate there. [/s]

    But seriously, Texas should learn a lot from this. Then again, from what I've read they had similar problems, if perhaps not to the same scale, in 1989 and 2011, and didn't learn from them.

    To start with, winterizing pipelines and windmills may be worth it. Greg Abbott looks like an idiot trying to blame renewable power for the outages when Iowa is much farther north and never has the problem, not to mention that much more of the decrease was caused by natural gas plants going offline, often due to burst pipelines. If you skimp on preparing for failure conditions, you run the risk of something like this happening.

    Other states have learned in the past. The northeast and Great Lakes used to have far more frequent blackouts, 15-20 years ago. The great blackout of 2003 seems to have been the catalyst for the region to finally invest enough to stop the problem of blackouts, primarily by improving the quality of the grid (versus the plants themselves), and they are much less frequent now, both short-term ones and longer-term ones like what Texas is experiencing. California recalled Grey Davis in significant part over power reliability issues, and subsequently invested enough in power production to prevent a recurrence.

    So on the one hand, it really sucks if you are in Texas now, and I hope our resident Texans have found somewhere warm. But it's also worth remembering who lead the state into the crisis in the first place.
     
  8. red_elk

    red_elk Deity

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    Unusual winter in Northern hemisphere this year. I read Europe is freezing too, increasing demand for natural gas.
    We've got pretty serious snowfall in Moscow last weeks and temperatures are also lower than usual. Didn't cause much problems for us though.
     
  9. Ajidica

    Ajidica High Quality Person

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    This is a dangerous situation for Texas and my heart goes out to those suffering.
    On the other hand:
     
  10. mitsho

    mitsho Deity

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    It's a bit unfair to Ted Cruz in that he is a member of the legislative body, not the executive, so even if he wanted to, he couldn't do anything. It's still bad looks.

    What I find mindboggling is those video clips blaming the wind turbines for delivering less energy while at the same time ignoring the fossil fuel based power stations that also had to shut down because of the freezing temperatures. Have they no shame, these politics commentators on the TV?
     
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  11. uppi

    uppi Deity

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    Not anymore, temperatures increased by like 25 degrees in one week and its spring now.
     
  12. Ajidica

    Ajidica High Quality Person

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    There is still a lot Cruz could do. It wasn't like he was already on vacation when this struck. Texas was already in the grip of a crisis when Cruz asked for a police escort through the airport to go on vacation.
    https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/02/ted-cruz-no-hypocrite/618060/
     
  13. mitsho

    mitsho Deity

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    Sure, yes. As I said, it's bad looks. Really bad looks.

    On the other hand, I would be uncomfortable with legislators having this much unwritten powers. That's just not the role as it is intended with the three branches of government and the separation of power.

    Regarding being a leader, that excerpt from the Atlantic is on point. I just don't think that's the right role for a senator. But then again, I'm not American, and that's just cultural differences.

    (But again, it's really bad looks by Cruz)
     
  14. Arwon

    Arwon

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    It depends on how automatic the link between spot prices and the prices charged by retailers is. It's not usually the case that households are charged a price directly linked to the spot price, usually there's a contract offer and a schedule of rates at different time of the day etc. It's possible that they've managed to sign people up to dynamic real-time pricing if they have smart meters, but that's not very common globally, smart meters are usually more used to vary pricing within established more reasonable bands of pricing I think.

    Most likely, the retailers have either successfully hedged against risk in financial markets or in swap contracts with generators, or they will take a bath on the high spot prices of the electricity. If the latter, they will likely try to claw back losses with future price rises.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2021
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  15. Cutlass

    Cutlass The Man Who Wasn't There.

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    Moscow is certainly going to be better prepared for such extreme cold conditions.



    Lying Ted may have abandoned his dog in the freezing conditions to run off to Mexico.


    https://twitter.com/mkerrhardy/status/1362483919086624775?s=19
     
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  16. FriendlyFire

    FriendlyFire Codex WMDicanious

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    Especially when Beto was checking on seniors and organizing help for them
    Contrast that with Cruz leaving for a Mexico Holiday
     
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  17. stfoskey12

    stfoskey12 Emperor of Foskania

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    I just want to pop in with a bit on how things have gone in Oklahoma. We've been even colder than Texas and are only slightly more used to winter weather than them. Things have been rough and disrupted here, but it hasn't gotten to the seemly apocalyptic levels of disaster that Texas has experienced. For a few hours at the peak of the cold wave we had rolling blackouts, and some parts of Oklahoma City have been without water. Here in Norman we have low water pressure and are asked to conserve water, but it's safe to drink. We had also been asked to conserve electricity to prevent more blackouts, but we never had widespread power failure like Texas did, and no one lost power for more than a couple hours (AFAIK). The University of Oklahoma has been doing no classes from Monday to Wednesday and remote classes today and tomorrow, partially due to bad roads, but also to limit heat and electricity use. They cut power to class buildings to save energy. No one's houses froze that I know of, and I haven't heard of anybody dying on the streets (but I haven't heard much one way or the other about our homeless population).

    I think it helps a lot that our grid is attached to the Eastern Interconnection instead of on its own. Also, our precipitation was snow instead of freezing rain, so we didn't have to worry about ice on powerlines. And maybe winter weather is just enough more common here that people know how to handle it better. We also get a lot of our power from wind and natural gas, but I haven't heard of any major issues with power generation; the main issue has been much higher than normal demand.
     
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  18. FriendlyFire

    FriendlyFire Codex WMDicanious

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    Cant fix stupid

     
  19. Kaitzilla

    Kaitzilla Lord Croissant

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  20. Sommerswerd

    Sommerswerd You exist here

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    Facts
     
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