Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Texas: There’s no electricity, but the bill goes up ‘spike’ | international


Texas officials opened an investigation into the “spike” in electricity bills in the face of a record cold spell in the past decade, the state’s CNN news.

Electricity bills skyrocketed

A Dallas, Texas resident named DeAndre Upshaw said he was “extremely shocked” when he received his electricity bill this month.

On February 20, Upshaw told CNN “While I was trying to get some gas and necessities, and make sure my plumbing doesn’t break, I was stunned by the $ 7,000 electricity bill this month.”

Record cold scene in Texas, USA. Photo: CTV NEWS

In Texas, customers can choose to pay a flat rate and the state energy company Griddy encourages them to use the plan.

“We always value our customers. We want customers and their families to benefit the most, even though this may push them to our rival company,” Griddy said.

Previously, Griddy asked customers to find another supplier if they found the electricity price offered by the company was too high. Upshaw said he was trying to switch from Griddy to another supplier, but the new company repeatedly delayed the date of supplying electricity.

Griddy charges its customers at the market rate, which changes continuously with current electricity prices. The company’s website claims its customers “pay exactly the price we buy for electricity”. But when a severe winter storm hit the Texas grid, the energy company’s electricity prices skyrocketed.

On February 18, Griddy said that it was calling for the bailout of Texas public service managers and “pledging to assist with credit debit for customers”.

Now, Upshaw has switched his credit debit card with Griddy to an expired card to ensure he doesn’t get charged any more. However, even when using electricity economically, his family’s electricity bill still increases “endlessly”.

Griddy’s neighbors and friends who also use electricity told Upshaw that the electricity bill “blew away all the money in their current accounts, ate into their savings accounts and left them now unable to pay their rent. home too “.

Upshaw feels grateful that he is alive and well, while many of his friends live in “more than 48 hours of no electricity”.

Texas: There is no electricity, but the bill has increased dramatically - photo 2
Texans line up to buy gas in the cold. Photo: AP

Texas officials into the investigation

Currently, Texas is struggling in a record cold wave that killed dozens of people. Some customers in this state like Upshaw are also facing unprecedented price increases in electricity prices. Accordingly, the “sudden” increase in electricity prices caused the Texas authorities to open an investigation.

On Feb. 20, the Texas Public Service Authority (PUCT) announced that it was investigating “factors associated with severe winter weather that disrupt power supplies to millions of households. people in Texas “. Texas Governor Greg Abbott is convening an emergency meeting to review the situation.

“It is unacceptable that Texans have to go through the freezing days without electricity or gas to heat them and now incur skyrocketing energy costs” – Mr. Abbott emphasized.

“To protect households, I am actively working with the president of the Senate as well as the chairman of the House of Representatives of the State of Texas and members of the legislature to come up with solutions to ensure Texans don’t get stuck because the electricity bills increased unreasonably “- he added.

In a statement released on Feb. 19, the Texas Railroad Commission – which has been regulating the state’s oil and gas industry for nearly 100 years – said it was trying to find a way to secure gas supplies to the state. in an attempt to “avoid the situation of customers having to pay unusually high bills in the coming weeks”.

The agency said it is calling for assistance from “energy producers, pipeline operators and electricity regulators to supply natural gas”.

The government should help people pay their electricity bills

According to the news agency Sputnik, the mayor of two of the largest cities in Texas – Houston City’s Sylvester Turner and Fort Worth’s Betsy Price – said Texas should help pay some of the “huge electricity bills” of people later. record cold wave causing widespread power outage.

Texas is the only state in the United States to operate a power grid that is independent of the federal network. Accordingly, the electricity price changes according to the market demand. During this cold spell, the demand for electricity increased, leading to a “sudden” increase in electricity prices.

Mayor Betsy Price said that both the state and the federal government need to work together to assist Texans. According to her, it is necessary to go through the federal government to get funding to help people who cannot afford their electricity bills.

Mr. Biden declared the state of serious catastrophe in Texas
Mr. Biden declared the state of serious catastrophe in Texas

(PLO) – US President Joe Biden declared a severe catastrophic situation in Texas, which is facing power outages and water shortages amid cold winter.





#Texas #electricity #bill #spike #international

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