The Public Utility Commission of Texas rejected calls for a less wasteful energy system. This campaign could change the PUC itself.
Since Deceleration first announced our soft “re-launch” for January 2023, the majority of writers pitching us stories seems to have something to say about Texas’s broken power grid and the failures of our elected leadership to address the core issues. Wasting less energy—at power plants, inside transmission networks, and in our homes and businesses—should be a core principle of any truly resilient power system. Remarkably, the Texas Public Utility Commission rejected demands from the state Sierra Club and others who called for the raising of energy efficiency program standards to help prevent future blackouts. Since, the Sierra Club has shifted their campaign objectives to the Texas Legislature to press for reform at the PUC itself.
Here’s an invitation from Texas Sierra Club Director Dave Cortez:
First, despite the PUC talking nicely about lowering people’s bills and expressing positive statements about energy efficiency, they have not done anything yet. They have failed to develop policies to prevent the type of blackouts we experienced in Winter Storm Uri. Well, now it’s the legislature’s turn.
The PUC is now undergoing a process called “sunset review.” Take 2 minutes and tell the Sunset Advisory Commission you want change at the PUC.
Texans like you want a PUC that is responsive to their calls for lower energy bills, more energy efficient homes, and greater reliability of our grid. But it is clear, without robust public engagement, we’ll continue to see policies that favor big fossil fuel industries.
More than 20 years after the decision to deregulate the Texas grid, we now have two companies controlling roughly three-quarters of the market! Better enforcement and limits on market power are sorely needed.
Please speak out again. Without your voice, hundreds of well paid lobbyists and industry interests will go unchecked. Take advantage of the opportunity to comment.
We can protect ourselves from grid failure, keep our homes resilient, and make regulators more accountable to the people by pushing the Sunset Advisory Commission to reform the PUC.