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Reproduced from IEA; Chart: Axios Visuals

The International Energy Agency is out with a helpful primer on how things got so bad in Texas earlier this week — and how to make power systems more resilient to weather extremes.

The big picture: Part of their analysis looked at what happened when bitter cold caused a surge in demand but also hampered natural gas production and power generation equipment.

  • The chart above shows the production drop-off.

By the numbers: All major forms of generation were affected, but gas took the biggest hit.

  • "Gas‑fired generation has a rated winter capacity of 55 GW but output dropped to 31 GW on 15 February due to issues throughout the supply chain — freezing wellheads, pipeline derates and generator equipment failures all contributed," IEA notes.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Feb 18, 2021 - Energy & Environment

How Texas' power mix breaks down

Expand chart
Data: EIA; Chart: Axios Visuals

The chart above is a wide-angle look at the main sources of electricity generation in Texas, showing how natural gas is by far the biggest and how renewables (largely wind) have overtaken coal.

Yes, but: There's plenty of variation, and blaming wind for the state's crisis misses the mark, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Feb 18, 2021 - Energy & Environment

What's next in the Texas power crisis

Satellite image of the Houston area. Courtesy of the Colorado School of Mines.

A Feb. 16 satellite image above of Houston-area power outages (shown in red and explained here) gets to the immense scale of the Texas-wide crisis.

Why it matters: It's a human tragedy that's also quickly reaching Beltway energy discussions and responses and jostling oil markets.

Power restored to 2 million homes in Texas

People shoveling snow off a sidewalk in McKinney, Texas, on Feb. 17. Photo: Cooper Neill/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Nearly 2 million homes across Texas had their power restored on Thursday, Gov. Greg Abbott (R) announced.

Why it matters: Approximately 325,000 Texans remain without electricity after a winter storm brought single-digit temperatures and sub-zero wind chill to most of Texas this week.