Abbott said the legislature’s response to the breakdown of Texas’ electric grid “fixed all the flaws.” News media reports and experts are questioning that conclusion.
A UT Austin study concludes that lawmakers did not do enough to prevent future power failures and recommended 20 additional policy changes. It is estimated that as many as 700 people died from the freeze.
At least part of the blame lies with the Legislature’s deregulation of the state’s power sector in 1995 that was supposed to save ratepayers money. According to a Wall Street Journal analysis, customers in deregulated areas have paid a surcharge of $28 billion over the last two decades, whereas customers in areas that remain regulated–including El Paso Electric, Austin Energy and CPS Energy in San Antonio–enjoy cheaper electric rates than those in deregulated areas.