Cold Snap Knocks Texas Electric Generators Offline

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — January’s polar vortex knocked several important coal-fired electricity plants offline, and the Sierra Club says the loss of power shows the need for more wind turbines and energy conservation programs.

The temperature did not drop as low as it did in 2011, when the ERCOT grid resorted to rolling blackouts due to lack of power. But the Sierra Club said Tuesday that the failures of traditional power plant while wind power persisted show the danger of relying only on coal and gas generators.

ERCOT, which runs the grid that serves most Texans, issued an after action report detailing the failure of six coal-fired plants to meet the grid’s needs on Jan. 6. Frozen instruments was the most cited problem for why they shut down or failed to produce as expected.

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