As Texas prepares for high temps this summer, ERCOT's new adjustments could cost you, expert says

Nick Natario Image
Tuesday, May 28, 2024
Your costs could rise as Texas' grid will be 'tested' this summer
New improvements have been made to the Texas grid, however residents could be looking at an increased cost as summer months arrive.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Energy experts believe improvements should help Texas' power grid this upcoming summer, but if you need a new power plan, be prepared to pay more.

Inside Energy Ogre, employees look to help customers save on their power bills. Recently, Energy Ogre COO David Kinchen said a trend has started to show what people are facing.

"Rates over the last couple of months have moved up fairly aggressively," Kinchen said.

Kinchen said he's only talking about cents, but they add up. Here's how.

RELATED: ABC13 Weather Alert Day: Excessive Heat Warning issued for Houston Memorial Day

A few months ago, he said people paid 11 cents per kilowatt-hour. If you use 1,000 kilowatt-hours during the month, you spend $110.

Currently, Kinchen said he has seen some plans go as high as 16 cents per kilowatt-hour. That same usage would cost $160 or $50 more per month.

"Hopefully, prices are maybe near their peak," Kinchen said.

Kinchen says prices are high as the state prepares for high summer demand. In ERCOT's summer preparedness meeting last month, it said this summer could be one of the state's top ten hottest on record.

It has a weatherization plan and ensures parts are working, a process that isn't cheap, which is why Kinchen said power prices are rising.

They're high, but Kinchen said they're better than a few years ago.

"If you're in a long-term contract, you should still consider looking because some of the people who entered into contracts two and three years ago prices were high," he said.

It's a higher price but should help keep the AC running this month.

Kinchen said improvements to the grid, especially with renewable energy, should help the state meet demand this summer.

"We'll see those conservation alerts, but I don't see any widespread problem with that. Last year was much hotter; we had less solar and less storage, and on our one emergency day, I think we had one last year, and it was all the way in September," Kinchen said.

ABC13 reached out to ERCOT about this summer, who sent this statement:

"The grid is operating under normal conditions. ERCOT continues to monitor forecasts and will provide any updates through our communication channels."

For updates on this story, follow Nick Natario on Facebook, X and Instagram.