DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – On Thursday, the Public Utility Commission is expected to discuss and possibly take action on a plan to redesign the Texas electricity market.

After the deadly winter storm of 2021, ERCOT made changes to prevent a future power grid crisis, including:

  • HVAC and inspections
  • Have an additional source of fuel on site for generators
  • Scheduled maintenance windows
  • improved communications

“Last summer we set 11 all-time power generation records and last month we weathered brutally freezing temperatures across the state with no grid outages,” Gov. Greg Abbott said Wednesday.

“We found there have been some significant improvements since the 2021 storm,” Dallas Fed senior business economist Garrett Golding said.

However, he said that looking at the extreme cold last month, there are still vulnerabilities.

“We still saw that there was some natural gas production that was freezing up,” he said. “Despite winterization efforts in the oil fields, we still saw some power plants offline due to conditions.”

He says better enforcement of weatherization standards, incentives for thermal power plant development and better demand response programs would help.

Meanwhile, Texas lawmakers have ordered the Public Utilities Commission, which oversees ERCOT, to create a reliability standard for the state’s electricity market.

On Thursday, you are expected to discuss and possibly act on a preferred plan.

The director of SMU’s Maguire Energy Institute, Bruce Bullock, said the plan would leave the basics of the market unchanged.

“They have a preferred plan that would give credit to generators based on reliability,” he said. “Those who have a good track record of staying online and generating power, and in that sense, those credits, someone has to pay for them.”

He said that eventually, this cost is expected to trickle down to the consumer, so he may end up paying for this, but the good news is that he doesn’t expect it to be much.