Texas Governor Greg Abbott blames power grid operator for winter storm disaster

Texas Governor Greg Abbott on Friday placed blame for the state's widespread power outages on the grid operator, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). Abbott's press conference comes as the state continues to suffer from the aftermath of a winter storm that knocked out power for millions and caused a widespread water crisis. Watch part of Abbott's remarks here.

Video Transcript

GREG ABBOTT: Sure. So the way ERCOT works, obviously, it's a complex entity that is a private entity that's in charge of managing power across the state, and we have to rely upon these experts to advise us what must be done, and I want to let you know what these experts told us.

They said, five days before the winter storm hit, ERCOT assured that, quote, we are ready for the cold temperatures coming our way. They also said that ERCOT had issued a notice to power plants to ensure that they were winterized properly, and ERCOT's annual winter assessment, which was designed to ensure the state is prepared, that assessment assured the public of Texas that there would be enough power to meet peak demand this winter.

Now, what happened is ERCOT fell short on all three of these promises they made, which is exactly why that I have ordered the state legislature to investigate exactly why ERCOT fell short here and to make sure this never happens again. Listen, we know that you folks at home have faced struggles by going without power.

We want to make sure that whatever happened in ERCOT falling short never happens again, even if it means that the state stepping up, providing funds to ensure that all of the machinery that froze up and was unable to generate the power you need, that may require funding. The state of Texas should step up and provide that funding.