Moderator David Dismukes is Executive Director of Policy Analysis at the Center for Energy Studies at Louisiana State University. Jeff Stein is Senior Policy Advisor at the American Petroleum Institute. Scott Doyle is EVP, Natural Gas at Centerpoint Energy. Christina Baker is Assistant Attorney General at the Office of Arkansas Attorney General.
Recent climate events, changes in the cost and availability of new technologies, and increasing political and social pressure to decarbonize are driving changes in the natural gas energy system. This panel at NASUCA’s 2021 Mid-Year Meeting discussed how these changes could impact the resilience of the natural gas distribution system and implications for policymakers and regulators. Enjoy these memorable moments.
Moderator and Executive Director of Policy Analysis, Center for Energy Studies at Louisiana State University, David Dismukes: We're going to talk about some issues that occurred last year and implications for ratepayers and gas system planning. We're going to talk about the 2021 February polar vortex and its implications for gas system resiliency.
A large part of the central United States was impacted by the event, deep cold, and impacts throughout Texas and the mid-continent region of the U.S., particularly in the deep south that are unaccustomed to weather like this.
We are going to focus mostly on gas issues, the power implications, and the interrelatedness of gas and power systems that were hard to deny.
ERCOT, the main grid organizer for Texas, saw significant impacts during this event. ERCOT saw record usage of around sixty-nine gigawatts, a little under half the power out at some point during that time, 4.4 million people impacted, rolling blackouts, and unintended consequences.