Texas Lawmaker Appeals for Elon Musk’s Help to Stabilize Power Grid

Rep. Troy E. Nehls (R-Texas) on June 28 requested Elon Musk to help support America’s energy grid.The appeal was made in a letter to the Tesla CEO in light of the consumption upsurge of electric vehicles (EVs) in the United States, The Daily Caller News Foundation revealed in a report on June 28. Nehls stressed the importance of partnerships between the government and the private sector. “As we continue to work towards solutions to guarantee our power grids can meet the Nation’s increased electric demands, I believe with your help we can cultivate an effective relationship between private business and government to ensure the long-term stability of our electric grid,” according to his letter to Musk obtained by The Daily Caller. As Tesla has been the biggest producer of EVs in the country, Musk is in the best position and capacity to offer “a unique perspective to help strengthen and increase the resilience of the nation’s power grids,” according to Nehls. The lawmaker further pointed out how the Biden administration’s energy policy could lead to the potential nationwide boom in EV production. In August 2021, the administration issued an executive order on vehicle emissions, setting a goal to apply the “zero-emission” standard to 50 percent of all new light trucks and passenger cars by 2030. The $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act allocated $7.5 million for developing a “national network” of 500,000 EV chargers along highways. The bill also included billions of U.S. dollars in subsidies for purchasing electric vehicles. Thus, nearly all automotive manufacturers, including Ford and GM, have launched a plan to boost EV production and accelerate their investment schemes accordingly. Nehls raised concerns that increased electrification in various sectors could lead to a dramatic power consumption uptick that can reach up to 38 percent by 2050, as presented in the 2018 U.S. Department of Energy study. Texas Power Grid The situation would be particularly difficult for Texas, which was hit by winter storm Uri in February last year. The natural disaster incurred the loss of up to $130 billion for the state as the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), the local grid power operator, was forced to cut supply to millions of residents following the historic snowstorm that brought down temperatures to below 20 degrees Fahrenheit in much of the state. Furthermore, amid soaring temperatures, Texas experienced power usage at a record level this month. Power demand exceeded 75 gigawatts at around 5:15 p.m. on June 12, surpassing the previous record of 74.8 gigawatts set in August 2019. Billionaire Musk criticized the Biden administration and its handling of the economy in May. “This administration doesn’t seem to get a lot done,” Musk said. “The Trump administration … there were a lot of people in the administration who were effective at getting things done,” he added. Follow Hannah Ng is a reporter covering U.S. and China news.

Texas Lawmaker Appeals for Elon Musk’s Help to Stabilize Power Grid

Rep. Troy E. Nehls (R-Texas) on June 28 requested Elon Musk to help support America’s energy grid.

The appeal was made in a letter to the Tesla CEO in light of the consumption upsurge of electric vehicles (EVs) in the United States, The Daily Caller News Foundation revealed in a report on June 28.

Nehls stressed the importance of partnerships between the government and the private sector.

“As we continue to work towards solutions to guarantee our power grids can meet the Nation’s increased electric demands, I believe with your help we can cultivate an effective relationship between private business and government to ensure the long-term stability of our electric grid,” according to his letter to Musk obtained by The Daily Caller.

As Tesla has been the biggest producer of EVs in the country, Musk is in the best position and capacity to offer “a unique perspective to help strengthen and increase the resilience of the nation’s power grids,” according to Nehls.

The lawmaker further pointed out how the Biden administration’s energy policy could lead to the potential nationwide boom in EV production.

In August 2021, the administration issued an executive order on vehicle emissions, setting a goal to apply the “zero-emission” standard to 50 percent of all new light trucks and passenger cars by 2030.

The $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act allocated $7.5 million for developing a “national network” of 500,000 EV chargers along highways.

The bill also included billions of U.S. dollars in subsidies for purchasing electric vehicles. Thus, nearly all automotive manufacturers, including Ford and GM, have launched a plan to boost EV production and accelerate their investment schemes accordingly.

Nehls raised concerns that increased electrification in various sectors could lead to a dramatic power consumption uptick that can reach up to 38 percent by 2050, as presented in the 2018 U.S. Department of Energy study.

Texas Power Grid

The situation would be particularly difficult for Texas, which was hit by winter storm Uri in February last year.

The natural disaster incurred the loss of up to $130 billion for the state as the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), the local grid power operator, was forced to cut supply to millions of residents following the historic snowstorm that brought down temperatures to below 20 degrees Fahrenheit in much of the state.

Furthermore, amid soaring temperatures, Texas experienced power usage at a record level this month.

Power demand exceeded 75 gigawatts at around 5:15 p.m. on June 12, surpassing the previous record of 74.8 gigawatts set in August 2019.

Billionaire Musk criticized the Biden administration and its handling of the economy in May.

“This administration doesn’t seem to get a lot done,” Musk said. “The Trump administration … there were a lot of people in the administration who were effective at getting things done,” he added.

Hannah Ng

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Hannah Ng is a reporter covering U.S. and China news.