Skip to comments.SWITCHED OFF
Posted on 01/17/2006 6:37:04 PM PST by SmithL
The order came late in the morning on Jan. 17, 2001.
Faced with shrinking electricity reserves, California officials at 11:40 a.m. ordered the first statewide rolling blackouts of the energy crisis.
Blocks of homes and businesses throughout Northern California suddenly lost power. Lights died, elevators stopped in their tracks, computer screens went black.
The crisis had been building for months. But on this day five years ago, the full scope of the disaster finally became clear. By the day's end, Gov. Gray Davis had declared a state of emergency and ordered the state Department of Water Resources to start buying electricity for Californians. Pacific Gas and Electric Co. and its parent company had defaulted on $76 million of its short-term debt, starting the company's slide toward Bankruptcy Court.
Five years later, the state still feels the hangover. Some of the power flowing through your home comes from the $45 billion in long-term contracts the state signed on its citizens' behalf. PG&E customers are still paying to restore the San Francisco company to fiscal health after it emerged from bankruptcy.
And yet, there's little agreement on what actually happened.
Most analysts pin the blame on three factors: major flaws in the state's 1996 effort to deregulate its power market, unscrupulous companies taking advantage of those flaws to manipulate the market and a shortage of new power plants. Some, however, will argue that there was never a lack of power, while others downplay the importance of corporate malfeasance.
What follows is a brief report card on the energy crisis' aftermath. Fortunes have changed dramatically for some of the emergency's key figures. Fortunes spent on overpriced power still haven't been recovered. And California's thirst for energy is growing again.
(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...
And the usual suspects in Junk Journalism will say not a word how gross incompetance by the State Democrat run govemement caused the crises.
It's been five years already? I miss FReeper Ernest_at_the_Beach's list of California energy threads.
Hey I'm still here.
We could have a repeat this summer.....
We could start a new ping list....
Right. A sudden electricity shortage in the middle of January (winter)...not the summer before or even the the summer after when air conditioners are humming and of course a mere 7% reduction in usage solved the problem.
Settlements reached so far: $6.3 billionSettlements? Gee there was no manipulation or fraud from the squeaky clean energy companies, why would there be multiple billions in "settlements"?
BTW, I live in Northern California and my electricity has never been off or dimmed because of a shortage...ever.
It may revisit this summer again, we have already had one close encounter of the blackout kind in SoCal in the last few months.
Past time for me to close down....nite all/
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