Over in the US of A in the great state of Texas and in surrounding states locals are experiencing unusually cold weather and are suffering from the effects. From the BBC:
A huge winter storm sweeping across the southern US has killed at least 21 people and left millions without power.
There have been widespread blackouts in Texas, where the energy grid was overwhelmed by a surge in demand.
Millions of people in the state, which rarely experiences such low temperatures, have been struggling to cope with the lack of power and frigid conditions.
The extreme weather is forecast to continue until the weekend.
Deaths attributed to the storm have been recorded in Texas, Louisiana, Kentucky, North Carolina and Missouri.
The National Weather Service (NWS) said more than 150 million Americans were now under winter storm warnings.
And on Tuesday, it reported that more than 73% of the US was covered by snow.
The electricity outages suffered by millions of Texans amid frigid temperatures sweeping across the United States have been seized upon by conservative commentators presenting a false narrative that renewable power was to blame.
“We should never build another wind turbine in Texas,” read a Facebook post on Tuesday by the state’s agriculture commissioner, Sid Miller. “The experiment failed big time.”
Fox News also joined in with one of its presenters, Tucker Carlson, claiming that renewables were to blame and that Texas was “totally reliant on windfarms”. The Wall Street Journal said in an editorial that “the power grid is becoming less reliable due to growing reliance on wind and solar, which can’t provide power 24 hours a day, seven days a week”.
Things became really weird when Republican congresswoman Lauren Boebert and Texan Governor Greg Abbott and others blamed the Green New Deal. The problem with this claim is that there is no Green New Deal anywhere in the US.
Again from the Guardian:
… no version of the Green New Deal exists in Texas or nationwide, said Mark Jacobson, director of the Atmosphere/Energy Program and professor of civil and environmental engineering at Stanford University.
“It’s really natural gas and coal and nuclear that are providing the bulk of the electricity and that’s the bulk of the cause of the blackouts,” Jacobson told the Associated Press.
Ercot said on Tuesday that of the 45,000 total megawatts of power that were offline statewide, about 30,000 consisted of thermal sources – gas, coal and nuclear plants – and 16,000 came from renewable sources.
While Texas has ramped up wind energy in recent years, the state still relies on wind power for only about 25% of its total electricity, according to Ercot data.
The agency confirmed that wellhead freeze-offs and other issues curtailing supply in natural gas systems were primarily to blame for new outages on Tuesday, after severe winter weather caused failures across multiple fuel types in recent days.
As Texas governor Greg Abbott ordered an investigation into the failures of the grid, Ed Hirs, an energy fellow at the University of Houston, said the problem was caused by lack of investment in the state’s deregulated power system. Texas is alone in having its own grid. The other lower 48 states are connected to either the eastern or western interconnection grids, and can draw on power supplies across state lines when necessary.
And apparently it is all socialism’s fault. Tim Boyd, mayor of Colorado City posted this to facebook:
Dying unnecessarily because of infrastructure deficiencies is apparently God’s will and you are to blame anyway.
Since posting this Boyd has mercifully resigned. Even Republican supporters clearly have their limits.
Of course the elephant in the room that is not being mentioned is climate change. That is apart from seedy backways where idiots are saying that if the earth is warming why is it so cold? Spoiler alert, climate change will result in more extreme weather, and sometimes it will be colder.
The Green New Deal has never become more important. Conservatives blaming it for weaknesses in old fashioned power systems that are no longer fit for purpose just show how devoid their understanding of reality is.