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Biden declared disaster, millions of people boiled water after power outage



On February 19, 2021, after an unprecedented winter storm, the city of Houston implemented a boiling water consultation, and employees in Houston drank water for free.

Callahan O’Hare | Reuters

The Federal Emergency Management Agency announced on Saturday that President Joe Biden has approved a major disaster statement in Texas because the state is responding to power outages and water shortages in severe winter conditions.

The operation will unlock federal funds for individuals in Texas, grants for temporary housing and home repairs, and low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses.

Millions of Texans have been struggling with power outages, and more than half of the states are experiencing boiling water notifications and water service interruptions. As of Friday, more than 1

4 million people in Texas have been told to boil water because part of the state’s water supply may be contaminated.

The declaration also provided funds for cost-sharing with state and local governments and some private non-profit organizations for emergency protective measures and harm reduction measures. Dozens of counties will be able to receive assistance.

The federal government has approved the emergency declarations of Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana, and provided Texas with supplies such as generators, blankets, water and meals last week.

The president plans to visit Texas as soon as possible next week to assess the federal response. Biden said that he will make the final decision only after ensuring that his presence will not hinder recovery efforts. The Obama administration has been working closely with Republican Governor Greg Abbott of Texas to deal with the disaster.

The Texas Electric Reliability Commission (ERCOT) said on Friday that it had returned to normal conditions and restored power to millions of customers. According to the latest data from PowerOutage.us, as of 10:30 am Eastern Time on Saturday, more than 78,000 customers in Texas still have no electricity.

Alison Silverstein, an independent energy consultant and former strategic adviser to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, predicts that 20 million or more Texans may be forced to boil water.


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