Texas power grid needs changes due to population growth – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Faced with high heat and persistent drought, Texans are urged to conserve, even though the Texas Legislature has made some changes regarding the power grid.

“No matter what we did last session, we weren’t going to be able to build next-gen sources in a year,” said State Sen. Nathan Johnson, D-Dallas.

In Texas, new homes are going up all the time, with more people coming to the state. Ed Hirs, University of Houston Energy Fellow, stressed that more needs to be done.

“We need more power, we need more generators to deliver that power, and frankly, we need more generators standing aside, to be ready. Keep in mind that the demand in Texas keeps growing,” Hirs said. “We have a growing population, we have growing economic activity, and yet we are not increasing the supply of generators that we need to power the state.

Now the question is how to achieve this and at what cost to consumers.

“What we need to do is encourage the construction of new natural gas facilities to generate electricity,” said Rep. Charlie Geren, R-Fort G

“Generally, people agree that we’re going to need next-gen sources. But the problem is that energy markets, financial markets, energy demand and the climate are all changing very rapidly in an atmosphere of technological change,” Senator Johnson said.

So while it’s agreed that more power is needed, the source of where it comes from remains to be seen in our rapidly growing state. But one thing is certain: these are big, time-consuming projects, with lawmakers stressing the need for conservation now.

“There is conservation, and conservation, and hopefully the wind is blowing,” Rep. Geren said.