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Archive for February, 2021

Governor Abbott of Texas has blamed the Green New Deal for the prolonged power outages caused by the extreme cold and snow/ice conditions that have descended on his state.

Nope.

The Green New Deal is not legislation. It’s nothing more than a 2019 U.S. House of Representatives resolution. Beyond that paper resolution, it doesn’t exist.

Mad Magazine, the comic book, used to run a section called “Things We’d Like to See,” and the magazine would have some parody cartoons of then-current events. The Green New Deal is just a set of “things the U.S. House of Representatives would like to see” in energy and the environment. Granted, an H of R resolution is more serious than Mad Magazine, but the Green New Deal has about the same degree of reality. So, no, the Green New Deal did not do harm to Texas.

Even if some sort of Green New Deal had been passed, it would not have applied to the Texas electric grid. Texas is the grid’s version of an island; its electric system is all intrastate and subject only to Texas, not federal jurisdiction.

Texas had similar cold-induced power outages ten years ago. The feds studied those events and recommended that Texas harden its generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure for cold weather. But those recommendations had no binding effect on Texas. Maybe Texas will now put those recommended improvements in the category of “things we’d like to see.”

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