After a week of power outages and severe winter weather drove up electricity prices, residents across Texas faced thousands of dollars in devastating electricity bills.
Among Texans who use wholesale electricity suppliers, wholesalers fluctuate according to real-time market changes and soar during periods of scarcity. Some customers see bills as high as $14,000.
Scott Willoughby, a resident of Royce, Texas, told NBC 5 that he owed the power company Griddy $13,926.89 in February.
Willoughby told the news media: “If I had to pay that bill, I would save almost all the money.”
He said he signed the wholesale supplier Griddy after moving into the new house in November. Griddy members pay $9.99 a month and then directly pay electricity bills on the Texas grid based on the time of day they use – this prospect can help customers save money without severe market fluctuations.
Willoughby told NBC Television: “In the first three or four months, Griddy and I did save $80 to $1
Willoughby is not the only one. Royce Pierce, a 38-year-old contractor and a resident of Texas, also owes Gedi more than $8,000 for electricity use in February.
Pierce tells Daily Beast Compared with the $387.79 paid last month for his two-story house, his latest bill has increased significantly.
Pierce said: “It’s unbelievable. To be honest, I didn’t believe in prices at first.” “Knowing that there is a looming bill, but we can’t afford it. It’s not a good feeling.”
Pierce said his family has been trying to reduce electricity consumption by adjusting the thermostat to 50 degrees without using lights or ovens to reduce costs.
Pierce said: “We are powerless now. This is already a crazy thing. I don’t care about people’s health and money.” He added that if the coronavirus pandemic did not affect his work, “it could have been taken care of. .”
According to NBC 5, other Texans reportedly spent between US$1,300 and US$6,000 on minimum energy consumption.
To solve this problem, earlier this week, Griddy told all customers to switch to another power supplier because the electricity price soared to $9,000/MWh on Monday.
Griddy CEO Michael Fallquist said in a statement: “We have made an unprecedented decision to tell our customers (for whom we have worked tirelessly) that they have achieved better cooperation with another provider in the short term.”
Fallquist continued: “We want the rights of consumers to be right, so we encourage them to leave.” “We believe that transparency and honesty will bring them back.”
But according to NBC 5, in such a short period of time, many energy suppliers are facing challenges.
On Thursday, Griddy expressed frustration to customers through an online statement, in which he blamed the Texas Public Utilities Commission (PUCT) for the severe price increase, which urged the Texas Electric Reliability Commission (ERCOT) to increase prices to reflect Supply shortage.
The company said: “We intend to fight for the rights of customers for this and work with them to reveal why such price increases are allowed as thousands of Texans lose power.”
Due to unprecedented snow and freezing temperatures in Texas this week, more than 4 million residents have no electricity or heat.
By Saturday, most houses had been restored to electricity, but millions of people had left due to the water crisis.
The Associated Press reported that after record low temperatures damaged infrastructure and frozen pipelines, Texas officials have ordered 7 million people (a quarter of the state’s population) to boil tap water before drinking it.
Weekly newspaper Asked Griddy for other comments, but did not receive the announcement in time.