Big Tech Power Grab
It is important to understand the difference between how power is generated and supplied to customers through a Regional Transmission Organization (RTO model) and a traditional regulated public utility model.
Read the reporting for yourself:

House Bill Would Bring Texas and California‘s RTO – Energy Crisis to NC

A quick reminder on what the RTO energy model did to the people of Texas (deadly outages during an artic storm) and California (devastating wildfires during the pandemic summer):

Mother of 11-year-old Texas boy who died during power outage sues ERCOT, Entergy
At least 12 die in weather-related incidents across Houston area
Texas Deep Freeze Delivers Macquarie $210 Million Windfall
Texans Slammed by Thousand-Dollar Power Bills After Storm
His Lights Stayed on During Texas’ Storm. Now He Owes $16,752

After those two crises made global news, how did a bi-partisan group of North Carolina legislators respond? By filing a bill to… bring the Texas and California RTO debacle to North Carolina.
RTOs would mean higher power bills for North Carolina families but lower costs for the big tech companies pushing this legislation. They could cost thousands of North Carolinians their jobs. And, as we saw in California and Texas, they could cost lives, too.

Click here and sign up to make sure the legislators who filed the bill – Reps. Larry Strickland, Ed Goodwin, Kyle Hall, and Zack Hawkins – know RTOs are a Really Terrible Option.

Mother of 11-year-old Texas boy who died during power outage sues ERCOT, Entergy

NBC News reported the family of an 11-year-old boy who froze to death during the Texas blackouts is suing the RTO and deregulated power company responsible for providing power to their home.

At least 12 die in weather-related incidents across Houston area

A February 16th report in The Houston Chronicle attributed at least 12 deaths in the Houston area to the storm, several directly attributed to the failure of Texas’ deregulated power market.

Texas Deep Freeze Delivers Macquarie $210 Million Windfall

Bloomberg News reported on February 22nd that financial backers of companies in Texas’ deregulated power market are cashing in on the Texas power outages, making hundred-million-dollar windfalls.

Texans Slammed by Thousand-Dollar Power Bills After Storm

Texans in a power market controlled by RTOs and deregulated power companies are being slammed by thousand-dollar power bills, according to a February 20th Bloomberg News report.

His Lights Stayed on During Texas’ Storm. Now He Owes $16,752

The New York Times reported that Texans who were lucky enough not to lose power during the winter storm are being hit with crushing power bills by RTOs and deregulated power companies.

Texas leaders failed to heed warnings that left the state’s power grid vulnerable to winter extremes, experts say

A February 17th report in The Texas Tribune exposed Texas’ failure to heed expert recommendations to require deregulated power companies and RTOs to prepare for winter weather, even after a previous cold blast in 2011 exposed similar weaknesses in the power grid.

Poor Planning Left California Short of Electricity in a Heat Wave

As the New York Times noted last year, the devastating blackouts that swept across California during a heatwave and a pandemic could have been avoided, and energy officials

The Texas Freeze: Why the Power Grid Failed

The Wall Street Journal reported that a fundamental flaw in Texas’ deregulated power companies and RTOs allowed them to shut off power to frigid customers without penalty during an Artic Blast, while simultaneously charging customers prices as high as $9,000 per megawatt hour.

Blackouts Revive Debate Over Electric Deregulation

The Los Angeles Times last year detailed California’s energy crisis and the horrific wildfires it caused, noting the state became “increasingly reliant on energy imports.”

A Really Terrible Option

In a deregulated electricity market – the RTO model – the RTOs serve as the middlemen that connect power generators with power customers. They make money for their Wall Street owners by paying power generators as little as possible to make electricity, while charging retail power customers as much as possible for that electricity. In states like Texas, RTOs can charge customers as much as they want for power. They also have no requirement to help maintain the power grid and make sure power is available during extreme weather events and natural disasters.

In the traditional regulated public utility model, one company is responsible for generating and supplying power to customers and a public utilities advocate or commission regulates that utility and sets a specific amount of money the public utility can make off of selling electricity.

RTO supporters promise RTOs will create an electricity marketplace that lowers residential customers’ power bills without reducing the quality of service. A quick review of the two largest power markets that rely on RTOs – California and Texas – tells a much different and much uglier story:

RTOs are dangerously unreliable

Deadly wildfires started by poorly maintained power lines killed dozens of Californians. Power outages across Texas were attributed to the RTO’s failure to winterize and insulate its power generation sources and dozens of deaths in Texas were attributed to these power outages, including an 11-year-old boy whose mother filed a lawsuit blaming the RTO for the power outage that caused her 11-year-old son to freeze to death.

RTOs are much more expensive

In states with unregulated power markets and RTOs, citizens have been hit with power bills of over $10,000 per month, even as they endure rolling blackouts. The Wall Street Journal reported Texans paid over $28 Billion dollars more for power through their RTO than they would have paid through a traditional public utility model.

RTOs give hyperpolitical out-of-state companies control of your power

Big Tech companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon – companies with a history of cutting off services to people they disagree with politically – can have a big role in supplying your home electricity through an RTO. A recent Forbes report showed that while residential customers paid more under an RTO model, the Tech Giants pushing RTOs in North Carolina paid less for their electricity.

RTOs could cost thousands of North Carolinians their jobs

Eliminating our North Carolina-headquartered traditional public utility companies and replacing them with an out-of-state RTO will cost thousands of North Carolinians their good-paying jobs.

RTOs put profits ahead of providing people with the power that is critical to modern life

To maximize profits, RTOs and power suppliers in deregulated markets often fail to properly maintain and winterize the power system. In California, the result was rolling blackouts and downed transmission lines that sparked horrific wildfires, billions of dollars of economic damage and dozens of deaths. In Texas, the result was frozen windmills, iced-over solar panels, gas supply outages and shutdown municipal water and sewer systems that caused billions in economic damage and numerous fatalities. Worst of all, Bloomberg News recently reported one of the financial backers of a company that supplies household power in Texas made a $220 million dollar windfall off the Artic Blast power crisis.