Deep freeze paralyzes Texas and knocks out its power grid


Deep freeze paralyzes Texas and knocks out its power grid – sending cost of oil surging to over $60 a barrel for first time in a year and leaving 5 million shivering at home without power or sleeping in their cars as Storm Uri leaves its mark

  • The cold bast caused by winter storm Uri is wreaking havoc on the energy industry with Texas oil wells and refineries halted and natural gas pipelines and wind turbines frozen 
  • Oil production in the country’s largest crude-producing state has plunged by more than two million barrels a day due to the storm, which has sent prices surging to $60 a barrel for the first time in a year 
  • Wind turbines, which account for a fifth of the state’s energy, have frozen solid and are contributing to the state’s power woes as temperatures plummet to a bitter -20F 
  • Nearly five million households in Texas were without power overnight and many residents took desperate refuge in their cars for warmth 
  • The Southwest Power Pool, a group of utilities across 14 states, were forced to impose unprecedented rolling blackouts because the supply of reserve energy had been exhausted 
  • The current crisis started to unfold when freezing temperatures that started at the beginning of the month sent prices for heating fuels, including oil and natural gas, surging higher 
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The deep freeze that has paralyzed Texas and sparked an energy crisis has resulted in some people sleeping in their cars to keep warn as 5 million homes are plunged into darkness amid unprecedented rolling blackouts. 

The cold bast caused by winter storm Uri is wreaking havoc on the energy industry with Texas oil wells and refineries halted and natural gas pipelines and wind turbines frozen. 

Oil production in the country’s largest crude-producing state has plunged by more than two million barrels a day due to the storm, which has sent prices surging to $60 a barrel for the first time in a year. 

Wind turbines, which account for a fifth of the state’s energy, have frozen solid and are contributing to the state’s power woes as temperatures plummet to a bitter -20F. 

Nearly five million households in Texas were without power overnight and many residents took desperate refuge in their cars for warmth after the electric grid failed to keep up with heightened demand.  

The Southwest Power Pool, a group of utilities across 14 states, was forced to impose unprecedented rolling blackouts because the supply of reserve energy had been exhausted.  

The deep freeze that has paralyzed Texas by knocking out its power grid and sparking an energy crisis saw 5 million homes plunged into darkness amid unprecedented rolling blackouts. Pictured above is homes in Houston without power but empty offices still lit up

The deep freeze that has paralyzed Texas by knocking out its power grid and sparking an energy crisis saw 5 million homes plunged into darkness amid unprecedented rolling blackouts. Pictured above is homes in Houston without power but empty offices still lit up

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TEXAS: Dan Bryant and his wife Anna huddle by the fire with sons Benny, 3, and Sam, 12 weeks, along with their dog Joey, also wearing two doggie sweaters, with power out and temperatures dropping inside their home after a winter storm brought snow and freezing temperatures to North Texas

TEXAS: Dan Bryant and his wife Anna huddle by the fire with sons Benny, 3, and Sam, 12 weeks, along with their dog Joey, also wearing two doggie sweaters, with power out and temperatures dropping inside their home after a winter storm brought snow and freezing temperatures to North Texas

Some utilities said they were starting blackouts, while others urged customers to reduce power usage, in a bid to prevent the collapse of their networks. 

An image showing empty office buildings in downtown Houston still lit up last night has sparked outrage given there were 1.3 million people across the city without power. 

Surging demand, driven by people trying to keep their homes warm and cold weather knocking some power stations offline, has pushed Texas’ system beyond the limits. 

The crisis has sparked concerns about how the energy landscape may change amid the push to rely on renewable energy instead of fossil fuels. 

The current crisis started to unfold when freezing temperatures that started at the beginning of the month sent prices for heating fuels, including oil and natural gas, surging higher.

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The rapidly dropping temperatures resulted in gas pipelines seizing up, wind turbines freezing and oil wells shutting. 

It occurred at a time when demand for heating – from households and businesses – surged to record highs. 

‘I’ve been following energy markets and grid issues for a while, and I cannot recall an extreme weather event that impacted such a large swath of the nation in this manner — the situation is critical,’ Neil Chatterjee, a member of the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, told Bloomberg.   

Drone footages captures snowfall in Galveston, Texas amid winter storm Uri

Drone footages captures snowfall in Galveston, Texas amid winter storm Uri

A map from poweroutage.us showed that nearly 5 million people were without power in Texas, and several hundred thousand in Louisiana and Oregon

A map from poweroutage.us showed that nearly 5 million people were without power in Texas, and several hundred thousand in Louisiana and Oregon

TEXAS: State officials said surging demand, driven by people trying to keep their homes warm, and cold weather knocking some power stations offline had pushed Texas' system beyond the limits

TEXAS: State officials said surging demand, driven by people trying to keep their homes warm, and cold weather knocking some power stations offline had pushed Texas’ system beyond the limits

MISSOURI: Snowplows form a gangplow to clear the snow on Highway 270 in Des Peres, Missouri on Monday. St. Louis received about eight inches of snow as temperatures remained around zero for the day, with real feel temperatures about 16 degrees below zero

MISSOURI: Snowplows form a gangplow to clear the snow on Highway 270 in Des Peres, Missouri on Monday. St. Louis received about eight inches of snow as temperatures remained around zero for the day, with real feel temperatures about 16 degrees below zero

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