No matter what Punxsutawney Phil might have declared this morning, this storm-filled winter can’t end soon enough. Just ask the citizens of Texas, where the frigid temperatures have forced power providers to implement rolling blackouts statewide.
Around 3 million households in the Lone Star State have been or will be temporarily without power during the current cold snap as Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), the state’s power grid operator, asks energy suppliers to cut thousands of megawatts worth of power demand.
“We expect the rolling outages to continue until a sufficient amount of generation is back online,” ERCOT said in a statement. “We are continuing the appeal for energy conservation.”
Affected homes are being left without heat or power for around 45 minutes to an hour at a time. Some schools and businesses have also closed because of the blackouts.
“A shortfall of energy across the state means customers must conserve energy,” said Doyle Beneby, president and CEO of San Antonio-based CPS Energy. “There’s not enough generation to take care of everyone on the state grid.”