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Thu Apr 22, 2021, 09:43 PM

Minnesota gasps at the financial damage it faces from the Texas freeze

When Texas’ natural gas supplies froze up, prices soared, and now Minnesota’s customers are looking at an $800 million bill. One utility, headquartered in Houston, is taking an especially aggressive tack.

The ineptness and disregard for common-sense utility regulation in Texas makes my blood boil and keeps me up at night,” Katie Sieben, chairwoman of the Minnesota Public Utility Commission, said in an interview. “It is maddening and outrageous and completely inexcusable that Texas’s lack of sound utility regulation is having this impact on the rest of the country.” . . .

Gas prices in Minnesota rose to 70 times their normal level, as deliveries to the state’s main trading hub dropped by 39 percent. . . .

Minnesota’s biggest gas companies are putting forward plans to recoup their expenses by adding a surcharge to customers’ bills, which the state utility commission would first have to approve. Normally, such adjustments to account for winter prices go into effect in September, but Minnesota’s biggest gas utility, Houston-based CenterPoint Energy, says the financial pinch is so great it wants to start billing customers next month — and charging them nearly 9 percent interest until the extraordinary costs are paid off. . . .

Minnesota’s second-largest gas company, Xcel Energy, also wants to spread the recovery of costs over two years — but said it would not charge interest, which it said would amount to $24.7 million on borrowing to cover its expenses. The company, based in Minneapolis, predicted a charge of about $250 per residential customer. Minnesota Energy Resources said it would hope to recover about $225 per customer. The smallest commercial utility, Greater Minnesota Gas, said it had enough of a supply in storage in February and was able to avoid the spot market.


I'm not quite sure I understand why MN ends up paying so much. Is it do to the fact energy costs in general skyrocketed during the Texas cold spell, or is there another explanation?

And of course I have both Center Point and Excel.

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Reply Minnesota gasps at the financial damage it faces from the Texas freeze (Original post)
iemanja Apr 22 OP
FoxNewsSucks Apr 22 #1
progree Apr 22 #2
dflprincess Apr 22 #5
SergeStorms Apr 22 #3
Ferrets are Cool Apr 22 #4
rickford66 Apr 22 #6

Response to iemanja (Original post)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 09:52 PM

1. Maybe because MN is a blue state

and you can't expect a corporation, especially a TX energy company, to pay for their own stupidity and shortsightedness.

Check the gasoline prices in blue coastal states compared to red states. This is probably the same kind of thing.

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Response to iemanja (Original post)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 10:07 PM

2. 9% interest, seems fair considering I earn 90% interest on my bank savings account

Oh wait, it's 0.0090% interest.

Houston-based CenterPoint Energy, says the financial pinch is so great it wants to start billing customers next month — and charging them nearly 9 percent interest until the extraordinary costs are paid off. . . .

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Response to progree (Reply #2)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 10:52 PM

5. Remember when we were told that deregulation would be so good for consumers?

This is what it got us. The banks issue credit cards with usurious interest rates, and pay less than 1% on savings.

I wish they'd explain how that works.

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Response to iemanja (Original post)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 10:07 PM

3. Wait. Isn't the U.S. energy independent?

With all of the lovely fracking going on everywhere in the country, I thought we were energy independent? Oh, that's right, they're exporting all of that natural gas because they can sell it for more overseas. So I guess that leaves people in the U.S. open to price gouging by the energy companies that taxpayers subsidize?

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Response to SergeStorms (Reply #3)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 10:39 PM

4. +1

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Response to iemanja (Original post)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 11:02 PM

6. Gas and oil extracted in the USA is not "ours".

It is bought and sold on the World Markets.

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