One way to look at this goes like this:
30 years ago, there was a lot of slack in the system. Not only lots of capacity, but capacity that was managed in a way that furthered the reliability and robustness of the system.
We’ve spent those decades squeezing that robustness out of the system. A little here. A little there. None of those decisions, taken alone, did that much harm. Pols could stand up and talk about all the good they did, and the harm (loss of robustness) was invisible.
Until it wasn’t. Today.
California has already gone through this. But between the “that’s just California” factor and the relatively agreeable climate, no one really cared.
But now its Texas. This isn’t supposed to happen in Texas.
The real crime here is the opacity. If the country wants to spend money for lower pollution, that’s a perfectly good priority. But we’re never asked “would you exchange 2x electric prices for cleaner air?” The Congress never has that debate. We never confront the costs of cleaner air honestly.
Instead, we pass vague laws with no consideration of the costs, then let regulators whittle away.
I’ll let Peter take it from here…