Operators of the state’s electric grid are about to flip the switch on what could be the most significant change to the Texas energy market in a decade. The change to what’s called a “nodal” grid system happens on Dec. 1, but as Matt Largey of KUT News reports, it’s not clear what happens after that.Full Story
Texas has long been a leader in the nation's energy industry. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, Texas is the largest petroleum refiner in the U.S., and produces more than three times the natural gas than any other state. The Comptroller's Office reports tax revenues from energy production and use, particularly oil and gas, have ...
So what if coal, the dirtiest of the fossil fuels, faces tightening air-pollution standards from federal regulators? Texas is aggressively building new coal plants. An air-pollution permit recently approved for a plant in Matagorda County is one of six granted to projects that are not yet up and running, and four more projects — near Abilene, Odessa, Sweeny and Corpus Christi — have sought permits. Texas, which consumes far more coal power than any other state, already has 19 operating coal-fired power plants, the majority of which are in East Texas.Full Story
Whoever wins the governor's race in November will face a variety of pressing questions concerning one of the state's biggest industries: energy. Texas is a top producer of natural gas, oil and, more recently, wind power. As things stand now, the state is coping with a federal moratorium on new deepwater oil drilling, bracing for federal action on climate change and other air pollution, preparing for an influx of electric cars and debating whether to enact a mandate for renewable energy sources other than wind. How do Rick Perry and Bill White come down on the issues?Full Story
Texas air-pollution regulators today approved a crucial environmental permit for a large and controversial coal plant in Matagorda County.Full Story
There are no viable substitutes for the longest segment of a controversial proposed transmission line through the Hill Country, the state grid operator reported today.Full Story
Despite opposition from Hill Country landowners, the Texas Public Utility Commission declined to throw out one of the proposed wind-power transmission lines through Hill Country during an open meeting this morning.Full Story
Texans are being asked to sound off as the Environmental Protection Agency considers regulating the dumping of coal ash. A public hearing on the issue will be held later today in Dallas. David Martin Davies of Texas Public Radio reports.Full Story
I hit the campaign trail with Rick Perry, E. Smith starts off the fall TribLive series by interviewing Attorney General Greg Abbott, Stiles on the most congested roads in Texas, Ramshaw's interview with former Dallas Mayor Laura Miller, Grissom on the perils of talking too much if you're the head of the state's jail standards board, M. Smith on Congressman Chet Edwards' fight for political survival in a Republican year, Philpott on counties worried the state's budget woes will trickle down, Hamilton on whether Texas should be in the movie-vetting business, Aguilar on a Mexican journalist seeking asylum from his country's drug violence, Galbraith on green energy and Texas college football, and excerpts from former Lt. Gov. Bill Hobby's new book, How Things Really Work: Lessons from a Life in Politics: The best of our best from August 30 to September 3, 2010.Full Story
When Longhorn football kicks off at home this month, so will a brand-new marketing effort urging boosters to buy, of all things, green electricity. Colt McCoy's family has already signed up with Texas Longhorns Energy, which promises customers 100 percent power from Texas wind. The Aggies will roll out a similar deal on Friday. The programs are another sign of the universities' branding heft — even though they may not be the best deal within the confusing Texas electricity market.Full Story
The former Dallas mayor on her new life as an energy policy nerd, leaving journalism for the "dark side" of elective office, her continuing frustration over the Trinity River Project and her (lack of) political aspirations.Full Story
Texas has always operated its own electricity grid, separate from the two other grids that span the rest of the nation. But a project quietly emerging in eastern New Mexico could curb that independence — and affect energy prices here in ways that remain much in dispute.Full Story
BP's problem-plagued Texas City refinery — where a 2005 explosion killed 15 and injured 170 — now faces two civil lawsuits stemming from its release this spring of more than 500,000 pounds of cancer-causing pollutants over 40 days. One suit seeks $10 billion on behalf of 2,000 exposed workers; the other, filed by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, seeks more than $1 million in fines. Both aim to punish the company for one of the largest chemical emissions events the state has ever seen.Full Story
The Texas attorney general accuses BP of "once again prioritizing profits over environmental compliance" at its Texas City refinery.
Within 10 days, the Public Utility Commission plans to adopt stricter requirements for energy efficiency, though they are lower than originally proposed.Full Story
The rollout of smart meters in Texas has sparked complaints, but a new report has found that they're accurate in 99.96 percent of cases.Full Story