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APPA Applauds FERC, NERC Efforts To Analyze Winter Cold Weather Event

The American Public Power Association (APPA) recently applauded the joint efforts of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), and NERC’s Regional Entities to analyze the February 2021 cold weather event in Texas and the South-Central U.S. 

“The event put grid reliability for millions of Americans at risk and left many utilities and their customers facing billions of dollars of additional costs they will be repaying for years to come,” wrote Joy Ditto, President and CEO of APPA, in a letter to FERC Chairman Richard Glick and NERC President and CEO James Robb.

The detailed analysis by FERC and NERC staff in their final report issued on Nov. 16 “provides invaluable information about what went wrong -- and what went right -- as electric utilities in the affected regions worked to keep the lights on in face of significant challenges during the event,” she said in the letter.

“We have been working with our members to prevent a recurrence of the circumstances that arose during the event, including through legislative and regulatory approaches. One key to responding, however, has been a definitive investigation of the core causes of the event. The report will be a critical resource in this effort.”

Ditto said that APPA looks forward to working with FERC, NERC, and other energy stakeholders to use the report “and our own findings to ensure that similar events never recur.”

In September 2021, staff from FERC and NERC provided a report that included preliminary findings and recommendations related to the February 2021 cold weather event that impacted the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), Southwest Power Pool (SPP), Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), and other regions.