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Protesters demand ERCOT take responsibility for disastrous failure

Weather / Weather News /

AUSTIN, Texas — About 50 people gathered Sunday afternoon outside ERCOT’s campus in suburban Austin, demanding the nonprofit that controls about 85% of the Texas power grid take responsibility for the disastrous failure that plunged millions into darkness without heat or water.

Hosted by the Party for Socialism and Liberation, Austin Stops ...Read more

Scott Keeler/Tampa Bay Times/Tampa Bay Times via ZUMA Wire/TNS

Hurricane season could start in May this year because storms keep jumping the gun

Weather / Weather News /

PALM BEACH, Fla. — A recent spate of overly eager tropical cyclones may lead to an earlier start to hurricane season, pushing up the official first day to May 15 from the traditional kickoff of June 1 – a date that has been custom for more than five decades.

The jumpstart in dates will be discussed at a World Meteorological Organization ...Read more

Bob Daemmrich/ZUMA Wire/TNS

Texas cities fret as power bills mount in wake of blackouts

Weather / Weather News /

The power supply shortages that slammed Texas last week drove spot electricity prices sky-high for some locally owned utilities, with one town on the hook for more than $200 million and other municipalities anxiously awaiting their bills.

Denton, northwest of Dallas, racked up at least $207 million in power purchases over the span of a few days...Read more

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images North America/TNS

Days before blackouts, one Texas power giant sounded the alarm

Weather / Weather News /

Vistra Corp., one of the largest power generators in Texas, said it warned state agencies days before cascading blackouts plunged millions into darkness that internal forecasts showed electricity demand was expected to exceed supply.

Despite the warning, “the coordination and planning by authorities across the broader energy sector were ...Read more

JAY JANNER/Austin American-Statesman/TNS

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott: Public Utility Commission hitting pause on non-payment disconnections

Weather / Weather News /

FORT WORTH, Texas — The Texas Public Utility Commission is hitting pause on disconnecting customers for not paying their bills following the winter storm that left some with electricity bills in the thousands, Gov. Greg Abbott said Sunday.

"The Public Utilities Commission is issuing a moratorium on customer disconnections for non payment," ...Read more

Tom Williams/Getty Images/New York Daily News/TNS

Ocasio-Cortez jets down to Texas to help recovery effort after catastrophic winter storm

Weather / Weather News /

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., is lending her star power to the Lone Star State.

The lawmaker helped raise a whopping $4 million in donations to help Texas recover from the disastrous winter storm that slammed the state.

Ocasio-Cortez volunteered Saturday at a Houston food bank with Texas Reps. Sheila Jackson-Lee and Sylvia Garcia.

�...Read more

Angela Piazza for American-Statesman/Austin American-Statesman/TNS

Tales from the Texas cold: Struggles didn't stop when power returned

Weather / Weather News /

AUSTIN, Texas — Cold but undaunted, Courtney Flores thought her family was doing moderately well after almost two days without power to their South Austin home. But then the water started pouring down from the attic.

It was Tuesday, about an hour before sunset, as they scrambled to limit the already extensive damage while packing up for an ...Read more

Drew Angerer/Getty Images North America/TNS

Biden approves major disaster declaration for Texas after freeze

Weather / Weather News /

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden approved a major disaster declaration for Texas, which will expedite federal funding for a state wracked with widespread power outages following a rare arctic blast this week.

Separately, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approved an emergency fuel waiver for the state to prevent gasoline shortages, ...Read more

Southern California winds threaten trees, power lines

Weather / Weather News /

LOS ANGELES — Winds whipped through swaths of Southern California on Saturday, prompting forecasters to warn of downed trees and power lines.

In the Los Angeles area, the strongest winds were blowing in the Santa Clarita and northern San Fernando valleys, where gusts were reaching 50 mph Saturday morning, while West Los Angeles was recording ...Read more

Xavier Collin/Avalon via ZUMA Press/TNS

Beyonce offering 'Winter Storm Assistance' to Texans, others affected by storm

Weather / Weather News /

Beyonce is lending a helping hand to her hometown.

The pop superstar’s Houston-based BeyGood nonprofit organization have joined forces with Adidas to give up to $1,000 to those suffering from the aftereffects of the devastating winter storm.

Funds are earmarked for those living in Texas or any state affected by the storms, which have left ...Read more

Smiley N. Pool/10053254P/TNS

Winter storm damage may rival Hurricane Harvey's price tag, experts say

Weather / Weather News /

As thawing temperatures begin to release Texas from the record-breaking deep freeze that has gripped the state over the past week, the devastating financial toll from broken water pipes, downed trees, wrecked automobiles and related weather-induced destruction is becoming clear.

Insurance industry executives say they anticipate the price tag ...Read more

Michael Loccisano/Getty Images North America/TNS

Winter weather delays vaccine shipments to all 50 states

Weather / Weather News /

WASHINGTON — Winter storms have led to a nationwide backlog in the delivery of 6 million COVID-19 vaccine doses, setting the time-sensitive vaccination effort back days in communities across the country, the White House said Friday.

“All 50 states have been impacted. The 6 million doses represent about three days of delayed shipping,” ...Read more

Texas power grid back to normal operations, but 180,000 still without power

Weather / Weather News /

AUSTIN, Texas — Five days into a statewide winter storm that left millions without power and water, more than 180,000 Texans remained without power as of Friday afternoon.

But officials with the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, the nonprofit that manages the power grid for the state, said the remaining outages are not because of power ...Read more

CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP/AFP/TNS

Now, this is extreme weather. Florida flirts with record heat before the cold arrives

Weather / Weather News /

MIAMI — Years ago, TV commercials for a cream promised relief from sunburn pain.

"While it cools the burn, it brings soothing, cooling relief to sun-parched skin."

South Florida's version of winter is also today's version of that retro ad. First, the heat.

"It feels more like a June pattern more than February," said meteorologist Barry ...Read more

Joe Raedle/Getty Images North America/TNS

As Ted Cruz travels, mutual aid groups are stepping up in Texas

Weather / Weather News /

On Wednesday night, photos posted to Twitter appeared to show something borderline unthinkable: Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas boarding a flight to Cancun, Mexico. In the middle of a pandemic. And in the middle of a crisis that had left millions of his constituents without power or clean drinking water.

Surely it must be a mistake, people theorized. ...Read more

JAY JANNER/Austin American-Statesman/TNS

Power back on for more than 90% of Austin; focus shifts to water, food access

Weather / Weather News /

More than 90% of Austin Energy customers had power as of Thursday afternoon, a warming development in the city's continued fight against the winter storm – a fight that now shifts to getting water and food to people without access to necessities.

A total of 40,969 Austin Energy customers were still without power as of 2 p.m. Thursday, down ...Read more

Smiley N. Pool/10053311F/Smiley N. Pool

Texas utilities announce end to rolling blackouts, though some power outages remain

Weather / Weather News /

FORT WORTH, Texas — Oncor announced early Thursday it has stopped its rolling blackouts across the state, though some customers may continue to experience power outages due to damaged equipment.

As of 8:40 a.m., around 35,000 customers in Tarrant County and 23,000 in Dallas County were without power, according to Oncor's outage map. Oncor ...Read more

Amanda McCoy/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS

100 million Americans brace for more cold, ice and snow

Weather / Weather News /

HOUSTON — After losing power and heat Monday, Jennifer Grigas and her husband had to decide whether to risk COVID-19 exposure by taking their sons, ages 8 months and 3 years, to stay with her nearby parents, who have a gas-powered generator.

"You're just so cold, that's kind of what's taking priority," said Grigas, 33, a stay-at-home mom ...Read more

Smiley N. Pool/10053254P/TNS

First person: How a winter storm walloped my Texas

Weather / Weather News /

HOUSTON — During the decade I’ve lived in Texas, I’ve become accustomed to extreme weather. I’ve covered hurricanes, floods, droughts, tornadoes and wildfires. I’ve worked through snow in Houston, hail even, filing stories from my car. I bought an all-wheel-drive SUV, stockpiled disaster supplies, created contingency plans in case we ...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS

Gasoline prices are starting to soar as cold blast supply chains

Weather / Weather News /

Hiccups in the U.S. fuel-supply system are driving up gasoline prices as refineries in the nation’s oil-processing hub attempt to climb out of a disastrous deep freeze.

Texas officials warned late Wednesday of shortages in the western part of the state along a 400-mile (645-kilometer) stretch of Interstate 10. Dozens of truck stops across ...Read more