Massive Grid Down Leads To Collapsing Infrastructure
A record breaking massive winter storm teaches us many important lessons for preparedness!
A huge polar vortex of extreme cold air plunged deep into the country during mid February 2021. This led to massive demands for electricity as home heating systems strained the electric grid.
Making matters worse, the development of a wide swath ice & snow storm crippled a huge land mass area, including power generation plants. Effects were felt deep into Texas all the way into the northeast.
Headlines the morning after…
“4 Million Texans Without Power Amid Grid Collapse, As Second Storm Nears”.
4 million (just in Texas, not counting other states..) without power during an extreme cold weather event. That’s in a region ill quipped to deal with this type of weather. An extremely dangerous situation to say the least.
Blackouts set off a chain reaction of problems.
Massive power generation wind-farms in Texas have gone offline. Turbines and wind mills have frozen.
During the event, ERCOT (which represents 90% of Texas electric load) confirms: the grid is still short of at least 18.5 GW. That’s a staggering number, which equals probably to ~3 million homes, at the very least. This is ~36 hours into the blackouts.
The TX power system is currently facing an unprecedented shortfall of electric generation. @ERCOT_ISO has requested Oncor & utilities across TX to implement controlled power outages to reduce high demand & protect the integrity of the electric grid.~ statement from ERCOT
The length of these controlled outages have been significantly extended due to current emergency grid conditions & severe cold weather. These outages are taking place across the service territory & ERCOT has said they could be required through Tues
We are asking all Oncor customers to be prepared to be without power for an extended period of time.
Systemwide Failure due to Historic Winter Conditions
Oncor Electric Delivery, Texas’s largest transmission and electric distribution utility, serving more than ten million customers, released a rather disturbing statement…
They asked people to prepare for the worse as the power grid experienced a systemwide failure due to historic winter conditions across the state.
- The Weather Channel Warns Of “Dangerous” Cold Temperatures
- Southwest Power Pool Says 17 States Limiting Energy Usage
- 3.368 million Texans Without Power
- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott Calls Up Texas Army National Guard
- Oncor Electric Delivery Continues To Warn About Extended “Controlled Outages”
- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott States Power Grid Not Compromised
- Power Crisis Hits Texas And 13 Other States
- Southwest Power Pool Declares Energy Emergency Alert Level 3
- Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner Warns Of More Blackouts
- Houston Mayor Sylvester Suspends Air Travel In Houston
- ERCOT Wholesale Electricity Prices Plunged From Cap Of $9k per megawatt-hour to around $2.5k
- Oncor Electric Delivery Extends Rolling Blackouts
- 2.7 Million Texans Without Power
- ERCOT Wholesale Electricity Prices Exceed $9k per megawatt-hour
Okay, you got the picture… Massive electric grid failures during the worst time of year (winter). There is a long list of follow-on effects of grid-down. I’ve written about it extensively here on the blog. It doesn’t take a genius to understand some of the worst or most dangerous aspects of this.
Regarding this event, I’ve read several reports which indicate —
Some areas are without running water as utility generators freeze and/or run out of fuel.
Some water treatment plants have gone offline.
Reports of some cell phone networks going offline. Cell phone service is starting to break down over the region as back up generators at towers are freezing or running out of fuel or both.
Other reports from some areas say “All city water customers must boil their water prior to consumption.”
No electricity, no heat! Millions of homes were without power while temperatures hovered in the single digits. It doesn’t take long for the bones of a home to get colder and colder without a functioning heating system. Do you have a portable heater safe for indoors? Extra fuel?
[ Read: Portable Heater Safer for Indoors ]
No electricity, no water for some – depending on your utility source. How are you going to boil water for drinking (assuming there’s a boil-water order) without electricity? Do you have a high quality drinking water filter? What about flushing toilets when there’s no more water? Again, I’ve covered this “water” topic so many times… it is taken for granted. When it’s gone – you’re in BIG trouble…
[ Visit: The Berkey Guy – Best Countertop Water Filters ]
Most people do not keep enough extra food in their home. While the grid is down, so is your ability to go out and buy more (stores closed). You’re stuck with what you have, or don’t have. How many people can cook indoors without electricity? Do you have foods that don’t require cooking?
[ Read: Portable Butane Stove For Indoor Use ]
There are so many problems that will affect your life without electricity in our modern world. However the primary preparedness aspects for this type of event are HEAT, WATER, FOOD. Pretty basic, but surprisingly (or not) most are not prepared.
If any of our readers were affected by this particular event, tell us about it in the comments below…
“It’s a function of how many generations we are able to get back on line, especially gas and coal,” Dan Woodfin, a senior director for the ERCOT, said in an interview.”
They are having problems with the flow of natural gas as wellheads are freezing. It makes it difficult to generate electricity in natural gas fired power plants. The weather is affecting wind, solar, and natural gas power generation, but coal, well it watt keeps the lights on.
Generations? Or generators? : )
generation= the production of a product ie. electricity.
Must be all that glowbull warming
As DW and I were discussing this, we will be having a couple 60 degree days here in Kalifornika, but our time will come also as we have discussed so often with the “Big one “ coming some day. No one is immune from what Mother Nature wants to dish out to us. Our reliance on our infrastructure is immense. Is it time for families and friends to hunker down together for a week to stay warm and safe?
I find it interesting that ERCOT did not have procedures and practices in place to protect its grid from a once in 20-30 year weather event. Certainly they had weather forecasts that gave them a few days warning of the deep freeze headed their way. As for the turbines that froze up and would not turn, um…..would that not be a “design flaw” probably pushed into the design by the risk assessors who said of the freeze, “it will never happen”? Would make me wonder what other events with a less frequent timing they are also missing (other weather events, fuel supply interruptions, CME, EMP). This leads me(again) to the conclusion that our power grids,( as we have been warned so often) are in fragile condition at best. The bright side is that a lot of people will get a wake up call, and begin to get serious about preparing to take care of themselves, instead of relying on ” the gubberment” to do so. Praying that everyone can get through this crisis safely and can learn from the experience.
Ya Ain’t seen nada yet. Wait till this summer when the Global Warming really hits and it’s 120 with millions of ACs running on Green Energy….
Boy oh Boy is life full of “it will never happens’. Just my own in general would be a Life Time Movie Channel marathon!
The wind turbines “freeze up” when the wind is too high. It’s a design feature to prevent them burning up by spinning too fast. I don’t know whether that is the problem in this particular situation, or if the cold got to them somehow.
I read a “report” once that said that it cost more $$ and energy to produce/install/conect a Wind Generator than it will produce in electricity in the expected life of the unit, That did not include the cost of disposal after the thing fell apart….
BUT you’ll never hear that from a libtard.
PS: Dismanatinalng the Dams on the Columbia River, STUPIDEST thing I’ve ever heard, IT’S Green Energy you fools!!!! OMG they have gone brain dead.
“OMG they have gone brain dead”. You just now realizing this Ol Son? LOL! It’s the government. And they are here to help!
NRP & Blue
Will comment on the dams on the Open Forum.
I saw a report that showed them spraying deicer by helicopter on wind turbines on blades… said was like they use on airplane propellers.
Oh man. Aren’t most wind turbines usually placed in the middle of farmland? I do NOT want to know what that is going to do to the crops or groundwater.
That is one part. The other part is when blades ice up and become unbalanced they likely brake to a stop to prevent self-destruction. Hence the de-icing measures they are trying now. Bet those wind turbines in the PNW have airfoil heaters to prevent that icing in their climate. Anyway, the machines shut down, likely in self-protection mode. Hope they can get them going soon.
We have thousands of wind mills here in west texas. They vary the pitch of the blades to control the speed that they turn. Even when wind blows 60 mph, they operate fine. Our issue now is the freezing rain coated blades and everything while wind was not blowing, froze everything in place and also effected aerodynamic of the blades.
This has not been a 20 or 30 year event! We have broken all time record lows and all time record lowest high for yesterday. This has been at least a 100 year record storm. Several comments above, Tom used the word “generation” correctly. Look it up.
The temperature extremes may be close to 100 year event, but the freezing ice storms that take down parts of the grid are probably 20-30 year events.
Minerjim, I agree that here ice storms are generally 20-30 year events.. I can remember 3 in my same basic location, one in the 70-71 time frame( don’t remember exact year) in 94 we got 2 inches of ice, we have had some ice this year, -not enough to be an ice storm..yet./winter nor storm events just not over yet… Adapt2030 has video out on u tube.. on Grand solar minimum shows graphs of 400 years..
Minerjim, I am upset about the state of Texas spending $3 million dollars a year for the last 10 years to “HARDEN the POWER GRID”, where did they spend that money? obviously they didn’t spend it in the right place(s).
blackjack22 . . . .Usually, hardening the power grid refers to hardening it against an electromagnetic pulse attack, and less often against a cyber attack. Completely different from making grid components winter-weather proof.
Anoy Mee, Okay, thank you for the clarification.
Anoy=Anony sorry for the misspell.
blackjack22 . . . Anony has an anagram of annoy. Coincidence? Perhaps not.
One would think in this day and age people would have the foresight to have purchased small propane or kerosene heaters and a camp stove of some type for electricity loss.There are many lessons to be learned from times like this. Extra food, water and an alternative heat source. The ability to survive at least 2-3 weeks would be nice and possibly life saving.
Self reliance has it’s rewards. I pray folks would wake up to the world around them.
Interestingly enough this is no longer the 1880s OR the 1980s whereas “people” take care of themselves…. Nooooo It’s the governments job to supply everything needed, even in events like this.
So how many days till the finger pointing starts? It’s going to be everyone else’s fault NEVER their own. Have resources and knowledge to ‘survive’ for 3 weeks??? ARE YOU NUTS????
I seriously hope all is well in these effected areas. Interestingly enough I hear chatter from folks I know in the PNW about “hows the Powder on the Slopes” and “Hey lets head out and Ski, it’s GREAT out there” Absolutely zero concern about the rest of the Country AT ALL.
NRP & Blue,
Yes , we are in different times indeed. So many people are as you described. They are relying on the .gov to “save them” from their troubles. They need a checkup from the neck up IMHO .
Even though I store gin in plastic bottles I do use real glass 1/2 pint jars for consumption purposes. heh heh
Stay comfy in the 4 corners.
Gin in plastic bottles OMG!!!!!
Thats just all out wrong in soooooo many ways 😫😫😫
Time for a Bombay Blue Sapphire Gin over crystal clear ice in a 1/2 pint Mason Jar LOLOLOL,
Yes life is good here on Lightning Point 😁
I thought you were on that “only 2 inches a day” plan with the gin?.( right……2″ in the bottom of a 5 gallon bucket)
I did not say how many 1/2 pint Mason Jars. 😳😳
PLUS a man’s gata have his Antifreeze…..Right?
You sure that is “Gin” in the Mason Jar?? LOL!!!
Plastic bottles for gin? Horrors! Get that “organic parts cleaner” into glass! Lol.
Hey, don’t look at me, I know better, parts cleaner WILL literally melt plastic.
NRP & Blue, “So how many days till the finger pointing starts?” It’s all ready started. State legislature members want answers from ERCOT, TXU, and Center point electric companies.
I too have been in ostrich mode before. Sometimes just getting the house note paid was enough to deal with. Understand how others just do not get prepared for ‘in case of’.
while i think we have all been there at some point with all the crap that has been going on over the last year I have to think there is very little reason to not be working on being prepaired.
Maybe I’m just getting mean in my old age but I have very little tolerance or sympathy for people not working at it
In general people have become more reliant on the system, not less. I know of people who live in hurricane country that don’t keep more than a day’s worth of food because “there’s always a store”. Another went through 3 or 4 power outages before getting a generator.
I follow this site regularly and am a prepper. We’re in Central Texas and suffering the whole thing, no electric or water but have been fine due to lots of propane, food,water and a generator we use just to charge phones or check televised news. We’ve been able to provide several of our neighbors with propane heaters, food and water. There are a few other neighbors also prepared so our small neighborhood has been safe and taken care of. Hopefully there are enough preppers spread out through the state to keep this from being catastrophic.
Livingthedream, Are you anywhere near Ft. Hood?
Central Texas update:
We have houseguests for the duration of outages since, for some blessed reason, we still have power. News on tv this morning said over 4 million in TX are now without power. Our church has opened fellowship hall until 6 pm as a warming center, w/ COVID precautions in place. Our neighborhood HEB grocery store will be open only from noon to 5 pm & is running on generator power. Thx for your prayers
God Bless Texas and all who are suffering (prepared or not…)
The Estimated Population of Texas in 2021 is just under 30 million.
Rough as it may be for them, the estimated 4 – 5 million Texans without Power represents about 15% of the Total.
Bad, but not indicative of “Infrastructure Collapse” or near SHTF or TEOTWAWKI.
Unlike a lot places in the US, I believe Texans will learn the lessons from this failure and make the changes in their independent Power Grid.
I went on Texas power outage map. Many areas have 25% customers with no service. Some areas have 45%, and some have near 75% outage. a few counites have tiny percent loss.
Many of these losses are NOT rolling but have been continuous for into the second day- and went off in middle of the night.without warning.
Texas and the rest of us in areas affected by these uncommon low temperatures had warning,of a few days…Those tight with money were able to do little for this depth of cold. Planned outages by those who sold wind turbines? Who owns those? think about it..is more than one way to reduce populations. Where i am we would have one day a year of below 10-12 degrees..before this is over we will have had in a cluster. I am in a warm spot compared to what these ppl in West Tx are getting. Nothing is buried deeply enough – water lines, insulation in zones where ingress and egress are insufficient.. Adapt 2030 has a new video out today…
Bloomberg News Service this AM had an interesting interpretation of the problem in Texas.
Since the crisis began the System has shed about 26,000 MW of generating capacity. Approximately 1 MW of Power can supply about 200 homes. This converts to about 5.2 million homes.
If you allow about 3 people per home you arrive at about 15 million people without power. That is half the population of Texas !
Scary, huh ?
Well, not all the load is residential and not all the service lost is on-going since they are conducting rolling blackouts with the Power generation capacity they still have available.
I don’t know the accurate, up-to-date number of Texans without power, but this is just an example of combining actual data in “interesting” ways to sensationalize the Crisis per the usual MSM agenda driven reporting.
what ya want to bet TPTB use this to say we need more renueables!
They’ve already said it. “Dirty” power is the problem, so we need to shut down NG and coal. The clueless will swallow this because they hear only what they’re fed.
Those who have been fed that story about ‘Dirty’ power. Could be reconsidering those awful thoughts🤔 as they freeze their backsides off in the Texas deep freeze.
It only takes one time of being so cold your teeth hurt which will be a great reminder of that precious commodity–electrical power. Anyway they can acquire it. (I hope)
Still am not sure about the Solar Minimum at this time. Days like these certainly bring it back to mind. WHAT if the weather was like this year around?
millions would die
thats what i have been thinking, if gates succeeds in blocking out the sun to cool the planet, imagine how much colder it would be, imagine if indeed we are headed through a solar minimum, then he does hos thing and mother nature decides to pop off a few dozen volcanoes around the ring of fire,,,
There is a place for wind and solar power. We are custodians of this beautiful planet and do owe it an allegiance of respect. The Father arranged it for our home. As usual politics and greed muddy the waters.
Mrs. U. Yes there is a place for all renewables. The same ones that advocate only wind and solar want to wear masks and throw them in the ocean… and jet set all over the world on private craft…
a good place to insert this.. WE are in a solar minimum.. and this is our introduction. Get prepped for it, our weather patterns of last several years have changed…Take notes what went wrong and what you need to do for the next round.. or the next year.. Don’t forget the late wet spring or the dry summer… all contingencies need to be prepared for… We can not do paralysis by analysis and survive this long term… Just my 2 c.
I have seen reports indicating the 2020s will be very cold decade due to the solar minimum, not unlike the 1970 or even the late 1700s. Global cooling is coming not global warming!!!!
Wake up Texas…in California crisis years ago you sold them power at inflated rates, they deserved it for not growing their power grid. Now Texas has become Californiaized too much going green. The citizens are paying the price with their lives. There is nothing wrong with clean coal, natural gas and oil, so wake up and put your power plants back on the grid. My heart and prayers for the people of Texas.
The globalists are not thru with California yet… They are talking about taking out all the hydro power dams… going to go to Green energy… well they better be putting wipers on the solar panels and anti freeze methods on the wind mills
thats what prepping is for
All those homes without power haven’t seen the worst of it yet. When the thaw comes there will be leaking water pipes everywhere! If you have friends bugged out it would be good to go back to their homes and turn off the main.Will be bad to go home to a flood.
Well thought out Gopher
Haven’t posted in awhile, been really busy but have tried to read! Oklahoma has got hit pretty hard! Where I am it is currently 3 degrees! It was below zero last night. Our running water has froze & we have food , wood stove for heat & thank goodness had some water put up. Expecting more snow today & tomorrow & predicting more power outages! Everyone please be careful & safe! Take care!
Oklady, Glad to hear from you.Stay in and safe. This too shall pass.
The original just sayin’ thank you , you stay in safe & warm as well. Just leaving work & the snow is pouring down again.
Good luck to you Oklady. Sounds like you were ready for this. Now you just have to ride it out. WELL DONE
poorman ,thank you. We are definitely riding it out. Not a lot of fun but at least we were blessed enough to have heat, food & water.
Your post about the water made me laugh. Here is was just four short months ago your friend and your sister said you wouldn’t need to store that water. I sure am glad you stuck to your guns and kept filling and stacking anyway!
Now just get those Gatorade bottles re-filled and keep adding to your stockpile!
“Biden and Democrat’s green energy policies threaten the lives of millions of Americans”……
“Millions of children suffer while Biden continues pushing failed green energy policy”…….
………..said no news media outlet ever.
Just wait until the Chicoms take the grid down. As BTO sang “you ain’t seen nothing yet”.
Romeo, It only takes one globalist in charge…making decisions.
RC, who say’s they didn’t in Texas (behind the scene, in the shadows…only the shadow knows), I mean it’s just a computer program…right?
I’m in far West Texas and thankfully, we still have electricity. It’s unusual to have snow here and I was ready for a power outage, but not for a lengthy one. Time to come up with a better strategy for snow :)
Friend just sent update from area of West Tx , in elevated area.. “ Power off at house 90% . Internet down. Phone towers down our way. COLD, ICE, SNOW.”
Our thoughts are with you folks in the deep south as you are experiencing this time of cold & power outages. We also are experiencing cold with a week of just above or just below -40 plus the wind chill going some times to -50 but we can get that here so waterlines are down 8′ & houses have lots of insulation. We still don’t go driving in that weather unless it is urgent because if you get into trouble you are in very big trouble. We haven’t had any power outages so far so we are lucky. I have been without power when it was very cold & your house sure cools off fast. We heat with wood with propane backup so we just need to make a quick trip to the woodshed for a cartload once a day. We also keep extra in the house just incase we are sick. My DH is 85 & I’m 79 so we try to be prepared for just in case.
Hence those who are uses to the cold and what it can do.
And those whom live a LOT further south.
I agree with you, another load of firewood coming in right now.
I am thinking most in ky are okay. I have been using one room, the den, heated with propane and open the bedroom at about 6 pm each day warming it.
I use a floor heater in that room and turn down the propane.
I have been surprised at the stored foods. A can of walmart chicken dumplings on the stove is delicious..BB date is 2009…the last of that year; now I start on 2012s.
I have Texas and other states in my prayers. Pray you all have prepared and have things needed.
Does this mean you’re going to have a ‘hold my beer and watch this’ moment, whereby you blowtorch the truck doors open and slide to town and back for beer? If so, we want video!
Being a Native Texan, albeit now an Arkie transplant, I feel the need to to come to Texas’ defense on the electric power shortfalls.
Have we all forgotten the Obama-Biden days? Texas had been a leader in the development of lignite coal resources and clean technology for coal fired electric plants. Texas, Arkansas, and I believe Louisiana invested billions in private money for new coal fired power plants that were completed the first term of Obama….only to have the permits to put them on-line denied by that administration.
The cost to convert them to natural gas would have exceeded original construction cost………..not to worry….the federal government provided grants to become a model for renewable energy sources.
Not too many choices were given to producers who had already lost billions thinking they were meeting all the clean air requirements due to a democrat kneejerk, were being told that even natural gas power plants would not meet future federal mandates.
Faced with those choices….what would you have done?
You make good points. Power generation is highly regulated by the Fed. States and producers are dictated to with little wiggle room. There is room for wind and solar, but it should not be at the expense of doing completely away with carbon based energy generation. ( in typical liberal politician manner, it’s not good enough to eliminate an idea, you have to pulverize it to atoms and eliminate any history of it. Then make it illegal to talk about) Clean coal and natural gas electricity generation should be the bridge until fusion/fission energy come into being. The liberals know this, they just are too impatient. Just my 2 cents on a blustery Colorado night. Stay warm all.
Impatient or not, they know THEY won’t be affected so they don’t care.
Dennis, Some of the gas fired power plants had to be taken off line when they ran out of LNG. The pumps that pump the gas thru the pipelines shut down due to no electricity
Can’t make this up, who’s on first?
The Biden admin. wants to reduce the amount of NG we can use…global warming and all.
I am not affected, but another lady in another prepper group is seeing mass panic from her daughters with young children. They are on city water, and thought that even if they lost electricity, they’d have water. Pipes have frozen and there’s no water. They have tankless water heaters, so draining the hot water heater isn’t an option. They do not have extra heat sources or lots of heavy blankets because this weather is absolutely unprecedented for them.
When we were young we moved to NW Ohio. Cold for us was 20F. We were surprised by -20F for three weeks for the Christmas time. With two small children we had to improvise. The central gas heater could not keep up. We put a long foam cushion against the ceiling in the bedroom hallway. This trapped extra heat in the bedroom areas. Fortunately we had previously purchased small tents for the kids to sleep in which were designed for a single bed. This provided more warmth. You could take a large bed sheet and create an improvised tent to sleep under. This works. The kids can spend the day in a tent set up in the living room.
It was so cold that we took a chance and used a kerosene heater in the basement to keep the pipes from freezing.
May God bless.
Did you read Ted Koppel’s book “Lights Out”? He suggests mini-nuclear power plants for each community such as they have in submarines. Where does that nuclear waste from subs go?
I live one hour east of Dallas. I am blessed to be writing to this. So many are suffering in our area, but we check in on our neighbors and help if we can. I will try to convince more people to prepare for next winter as I think we will experience these kinds of extremes again. I know I’m preaching to the choir here!
Our buck stove has been running non stop for many days. We cut and split extra wood last year, I tarp it, but plan on building a proper wood shed one of these days.
We have had rolling power outages, so plan our day around them. so far, no frozen pipes. We drip bathroom faucets, but since we are on a septic, have to watch that closely.
it is sleeting outside as I type, hopefully this is the last of it and temps will moderate in a few days.
This experience has shown me the gaps in my preps, so I will prepare in different ways and try to encourage others to do the same.
Im ready to start getting my garden planted! I have seedlings in my greenhouse, still alive. I plan on building a rocket mass heater as a backup. Right now, using electric heaters and grow mats.
love reading this site, thank you!
Thank you for updating us on whats sort of going on.
AND thanks for commenting
Lastly, THANK you for checking and helping others when you can….
Tis good to know there are good people out there that will help others in times of need.
I run the bathroom faucet when below 20° here. Will my water bill double? Well, yeah, but if I am unable to pay $60, then I am in real trouble already.
I have sheets covering the open doorways with no doors/propane heating 3 rooms at a time–den, bedroom, hallway in night/ den, kitchen, hallway in day…yuk…and who designed that open concept again??
I have 4 and 5 foot openings that are 8 ft to ceiling…those doors/extensions are very expensive.
I’d be interested in the gaps for a reference…care to share?
as It turns out, I didn’t have enough water stored in the house! And water for livestock was almost an issue. Our local water coop had a system failure, so no water since yesterday am. I am currently thawing out probably 20 gallons stored outside in a poly tank, in front of the wood stove. I have 2 -1525 gal poly tanks in a pasture, collecting from a barn, but the spigot is frozen. Today, I will heat up water to de-ice tank lid, bust a hole in ice and pump into containers using an rv pump hooked up to my side by side. I have the tanks, because I have no creeks, well or a pond…..
water from tank should be fairly clean as I have proper first flush diverter, but I will still boil it first and run any for drinking thru our Berkey.
Another potential problem,,that thankfully hasn’t happened, how to de-ice livestock tank with no electricity. I have read about a wood fired de-icer, so will look into building one of those this year. And buy more metal tanks.
Greenhouse heating without electricity? I have read about several options, rocket mass heater sounds like something I could build.
We have 20 acres of oak trees, so that is why I tend to think about wood heat.
Also, more canned prepared meals, heat and eat.
Man on foot, has had no power since Monday. My generator is keeping us warm for now. well I’ll be damned, Power just came back. doubt if it will last long. Houston
Praying for you that it stays on.
I say TX should sue Greta Thunberg!! Seriously though, has anyone heard a death toll?
There’s an article on zero hedge that says 20 people have died from causes related to the storm/outages.
I’m a prepper. In the minds of some “enlightened” and “woke” people….prepper is a bad word. Preppers are to be loathed and ridiculed.
Government is the answer to these folks….government….the more the better….the more we support government, the bigger and more powerful it becomes….the better government can care for us………
Then reality slaps them in the face. ERCOT (energy reliability commission of Texas?) had one job….keep the lights on in Texas…..make sure electricity flow was uninterrupted………”reliable”
Proving once again….you, me….the individual….are the only ones that you can trust your family’s well being and care to…….it ain’t a job to pass on to people who don’t know how….or care
Apparently that is a what a mayor told those whom were complaining, that the gov ‘owed’ them continuous electrical service. He said that they did not, caught a short news article on it this morning. That mayor is going to catch ****from those expect it
to be flowing into their homes no matter what mother nature is doing outside.
I heard another version. Seems he resigned.
Wednesday morning central Texas update:
Someone has asked how many have died thus far & a reporter said 20 on news this morning. We still have electricity but 65% of folks in Austin are without it. Our houseguests are appreciative of our accommodations & have commented on several occasions that they are glad we prep. We also have gas so if electricity goes out, we can still have a fire & cook. We probably would not fire up our generator until necessary for opsec. Time for me to check on an elderly neighbor.
My brother in law is in a position to camp out in his office as he deals w/ emergency services & that is safer than a commute as they also have backup generator power.
Lots of blaming & shaming going on in the local media. Heads should roll in several industries soon. Wind turbines freezing up & electric cars sitting idle will not solve our problems. Wish there was less federal interference as Texas could’ve, would’ve, should’ve done better without ‘em!!
The words “Prepare for the worst” never hit most the population in TX. If I didn’t have a generator or a way to heat my home when power goes out way up north here during a blizzard, it is my fault.
– Got a genny, it’s set to run as of about fifteen minutes notice. Haven’t needed it, so haven’t run it except to warm it up and make sure it’s ready. It is out of sight from off of the property, but I have enough other sources of light, etc. that I only need it to keep freezer froze and fridge cold. Checking temps, I had no problem, so it just sat there for the whole four days.
Supposed to have more of the same for the remainder of the week, then start to warm back up. I have made inroads into my gasoline and kerosene stocks, and my firewood needs restocked (we do not keep multiple cords stacked up like folks further north do)
We have a pair of bucket trucks working a couple of miles from here replacing a transformer. Our main roads are clear, side roads are slickerier than Saturday night’s soap.
We are expecting a new storm for tomorrow, so we will see.
– Papa S.
Stay safe Papa Smurf!
-Wilco. appreciate the thought.
– I can use my genset to power my well pump. With it frozen, didn’t seem to be a high priority. We have used stored backup water to keep hydrated and the house habitable.
Glad you checked in. Also glad you have preps to fall back on. Stay safe and warm!
Just got off phone with son in Garland, Tx (eastern border of Dallas. Power has been out since Sunday. His home adjoins a narrow stretch of trees separating him for Lake Ray Hubbard shoreline. When I called, he and a neighbor were cutting wood for their fireplaces, only source of heat for his all electric home. Technically illegal…the land belongs to city of Dallas…told him to tell anybody that complains to take a flying leap….and keep on cutting
Dennis, that’s what I would have told my son too, still snowing down here in the semi flat land, looks like we might get another 3 or 4 inches on top of anywhere from 7 to 24 we already got. I got my older John Deere lawn and garden tractor with the dozer blade on the front end and done me some snow plowing in my back yard and driveway yesterday, got me some some good trails now to the chicken coop, rabbit barn and shop, that deep snow was hard to walk through, I now understand why folks have snowshoes who live in true snow country. My chickens still haven’t come out of the coop, gonna be a mess to clean up when it warms up a little, You stay safe and warm up there on your mountain
Son called me back after the wood cutting expedition. Found out the he had plenty of firewood himself…..neighbor had come to his door asking if he could share some with him. Son told him he would give him enough to get a fire going in his fireplace, but if he wanted more he would have to go with him and cut it….he would help. Cut up some dead standing trees. Made sure the neighbor had some sweat equity in the wood.
I’ll be looking for a second hand snow blade for the side x side after this…may fabricate my own. So far I’ve been able to get around just fine in the side x side. It’s light enough that it doesn’t sink plumb to the ground in the snow, keeping it up enough not to high center.
So far, the only impact we are having from this is the extra effort to keep the chickens with unfrozen water, a limitation to travel. Mail lady attempted to make it to our house….snow too deep on the road, had to turn back. We are plenty good on supplies…..just waiting it out. Stay warm friend.
Dennis, you need one of those heated chicken water contraptions from tractor supply, I got one and it works fine, holds about 3 gallons and you only have to refill every couple of days, when I built my chicken coop I ran electric to it from my shop so all I do is plug it in and it works like a charm, if you don’t have electricity in your coop, you could just use an extension cord. Check it out when your able to get to town, you will love it
I am in west texas, our power was supposed to be on a rolling blackouts, but that turned into 12-18 hour at a time with no power. We made it pretty well with fireplace heat and are pretty well stocked for everything. I did run generator for a short time to run heat trace in well house while it was -1 degree, No freeze ups or major issues. Cell towers were down, no phone or internet and text was really iffy.
figured out we need upgrades to lamps and candles.
temperatures are forecast to warm up on friday above freezing, so maybe things will get back to normal soon.
The plumbing leaks after these storms are over will be everywhere. I suggest folks figure out a way to shut off the supply valve coming into the house before it thaws.
The time to drain the lines in the house was before the storm hit. I used to winterize cabins/houses in Big Bear back in the day. Most problems will be where the water supply enters the house and the hose bibs. I have personally repaired the supply line feeding a hose bib that ruptured 4 feet in from the exterior wall. Messy for sure.
Wishing people luck. I have a feeling folks are gonna need it…
The democrats will call it stimulus
My folks had a cabin near Running Springs as a kid (if you were in Big Bear, you know Running Springs was on the other side of Lake Arrowhead from Big Bear). Dad had the plumber install two valves on the water system with loooong extended stems up under the sink. One to shut water off under the ground, one to drain the whole house. never had any leaks, as we drained the system when the place was unoccupied.
that said, if folks have to replace piping after this freeze, they would do well to replace with PEX plumbing. it can take multiple freezes and always seem to thaw with any leaks. Cheaper than copper by far. (NRP once told me that he thought copper was only for stills anyway.)
I’m gona kick some butt…
NEVER use copper on a still…. sheesh.
I do agree with the Pex, although the fittings are still metal and can freeze.
Great idea on the shut off and the drain valves.
Thats the problem now-a-days, builders don’t know what they SHOULD be doing just looking for the fast $$$$. Hence build your home yourself.
NRP No Copper? Am I going to have to rebuild mine now? Grandpappy used copper…
Chuckling, at least both of us have electricity so far.
Ya gotta use some copper, helps take the sulfur compounds out of the.. eh…organic parts cleaner. Best to use it in the column, but i know of some folks who spend a fair time “farmin’ in the woods” who claim condenser coils must be copper. Have to agree though, stainless is the way to go for most of it. (water distiller for emergencies)
On PEX for water service, everything can freeze solid (plastic pex pipe, fittings, etc.), and it will thaw without breaking. Multiple times, still no break. if you kink PEX, you can heat it gently with a hot air gun until it turns clear, the kink will disappear, and you just need to hold it straight until it takes opaque color again. It has a memory, so to speak.
You are right on builders, you want something done your way, you gotta build it yourself, as i , and i am sure you have done.
Better let you get to your gin nightcap. Give Ol Blue a scratch behind the ears for me.
Minerjim, thats a good way to do it. A valve at the lowest point to drain out the system.
I also used an air compressor to help move the water along a little quicker. 30-40 psi wouldn’t damage valves or fixtures. Pex is a good product if installed correctly.
I have only seen copper worms myself.
These younguns with their new fangled stainless steel…LOL
Your comment about using an air compressor to blow out lines got me thinking. Here in cold country, people with underground sprinklers blow out their systems every Fall to prevent freeze breaks. Just think of how many sprinkler systems made of PE and hard plastic have frozen and broke, in multiple places, in the effected areas, in addition to water service lines Landscapers and plumbers are going to have a field day this summer. Right now they have far more important things to worry about.
Minerjim, it will be a real mess. I expect supplies will be hard to come by as well. Ken has posted numerous times about having supplies laid up for emergency repairs and maintenance. We talked about it alot on here over the last 4 years or so. I have plastic totes full of fittings and a shelf full of different pipe. One thing I recommend is buying the different pipe solvent and sealing it up in bags or big mouth jars. It will dry up on you.. I keep some “hot” solvents on hand to use in the glues but its sometimes iffy. I would purchase a few shark bite fittings for quick repairs.
Crazy times huh?
Good advice on preventing cement drying out; you can make it work again by having on hand a can of acetone (nail polish remover) to soften it up.
Minerjim and BJH, I just researched where PEX and PVC comes from. Mostly Texas and China. Given the weather has caused massive plumbing damage in many parts of America I suspect like the Home Depot-Lowes Hurricane Parade to Florida there will be a parade to damaged areas of plumbing supplies.
ALSO the weather created an America wide trucker slowdown and some stoppage to the Just in Time system SO MORE than just building supplies will be affected.
Only so many over the road trucks available and a lot are going to be heading to the weather damaged areas. Expect some bare spots on the shelves in addition to plumbing fixtures.
Hopefully the farmers underground waterlines to livestock and irrigation sprinklers is OK otherwise food issues soon. Flooding or drought is BAD.
Refineries likely damaged, so fuel issues expected. HOPEFULLY our Greenies in Washington don’t seize on this “Opportunity” to shut some older ones down for environmental reasons. If they can get a EO IN front of the puppet it WILL Be Signed.
Ronald said the scariest words was “I’m from the Government and here to help”.
Nothing can make a situation worse than an activist governmental official.
Sure. Now they’re saying it’s all the fault of dirty power and NG/Coal power plants should be shut down to “make way” for more green energy. Idiots.
Well and most new home shave those nice fixed glass fireplaces that run on NG or Propane. So no wood burning option there cause the EPA said that fireplace is too dirty. Most people can find something to burn if needed. Just another way to get the people hooked on the govt utilities. Also I have friends in TX how said after 24 hours with no heat, the inside of their homes were 45 degrees. Friends in MO said their water storage in the garage had frozen solid. I fear a lot of deceased elderly after this winter storms over.
Ken, I’d like to see a “lessons learned” topic after this storm is over.
I agree 1000%.
Would be good to read others experiences from this.
I’d also like to see a “challenge.”
Something like…take one of your “weekend” days and have a whole 24 hours of “no electricity.” Only keeping the fridge/freezer and heat on (maybe turn it way down to replicate “DAMN it’s cold”), no need to make it that realistic. Pretend that the water is frozen or off. See what you need to do to function – food, water, clothes, lights, etc.
Basically, act as if it’s real, and see what you would need to do to survive. See if you have everything you need, enough of what you need, and have it where you need it. Nothing like going to light up your candles to find that you have no idea where the matches are.
Find your holes.
Have Ken post pictures of your cooking fails. LOL
Ol’ NRP of this site calls those ever so often. His “Lights out Weekends” or something to that effect. Good way to find holes in your preps, and practice what it would be like to be forced to live without electricity. Oh, and he calls them both in winter and summer, so you can get the deferences for each season. But you could call one any old time you want for yourself. Practice makes perfect, and forewarned is forearmed.
HEY!!!!!!! What’s this “Ol'” stuff?????
NRP & Blue,
its just a term of endearment and respect. besides, you got a year or two on me, and that makes you old(er). LOL.
Tis not the age, it’s the millage.
But I hear ya…. 👍👍👍
Meep, Some of us just had 3 days of lights out, I think we’re good. I think we (some of us anyways) found the holes in our preps, now we have to fix/fill them (after the sheeple calm down and stop stripping the stores).
As Jim mentioned I do a “Lights Out” quite often, sometimes for a weekend or a full week.
NO CHEATING, you get to use nada from the house at all, just your BOB, GHB and the like. Not even the toilets or showers. NADA.
If you really want to find the holes in your Preparedness give it a try when it’s raining/snowing.
PS: Not inside the house… out there on the patio or yard.
What a great teacher Reality is, eh?
The wind does not care if you are cold. The rain does not care if you are wet. The wall you stumble into in the dark does not hear your howls of pain, as you chip you teeth upon it, or smash your nose.
Reality does not care if you have failed to identify it, or refuse to do so.
Reality is not dependent upon your ability to realize its nature, only you are.
Here is some advise.
Make a small fire and sit close, not a big fire and sit far away.
– Long ago, one of my assistant Scoutmasters (he was half Navaho and I think the other half was Ute, but even his sons didn’t know for sure. His wife claimed not to know.) told me in his best cartoon Indian accent, “Red man build small fire, sit close, stay warm. White man build big fire, keep warm hauling wood.” (he was an civil engineer, so…)
– Papa S.
Putting a back stop behind a fire helps alot to direct the heat to you.
I have built a small fire on each side of me before. I just made sure I had enough leaves and branches behind my back and my keester so I didn’t freeze my butt off…
The governor of Texas has issued an order forbidding Texas gas producers from selling to power producers outside of Texas borders through Feb. 21st. That’s only four days, but I’m wondering what the effects of that will be on other states, and will it snowball from there? I’m not familiar with the energy supply chains, but I do know Texas is a large producer of natural gas, and they sell a lot of that to energy producers out of state. I’m thinking the situation in Texas is very likely to have consequences for the rest of the country.
Pretty much the majority of our oil refining capacity is in Texas, and those are now shut down too. Effects outside of Texas? Ya think??!?!!!!. Natural gas supply system will see a ripple effect too. Who to blame? Texas govt? Power Companies? How about Federal govt energy regulators and planners? (Read your history and you will find govt planners at the heart of most major catastrophies) But people themselves must share at least a little of the blame for putting their complete trust in the power systems too the degree they have. There will be hundreds of thousands joining the ranks of the prepper community after this. Praying that everyone can get through safely for now.
Well, yeah, I pretty much thought so. Just trying to gently ‘red pill’. With the current shortages and supply chain issues, this will probably be the mother of all train wrecks. Anything natural gas/petroleum related, plumbing supplies, and probably a zillion other things, are going to be in short supply or really expensive after this. I’ve seen a number of vids of the broken pipes and water leaking in homes, apartments and municipal buildings. Food lines, too. I only hope the people finally waking up to the fact that they need to be self-reliant have an opportunity to self-correct.
They wont wake up,
They will bitch on their phone to their bff about how nobody is helping them and nobody warned them and wonder why the government isnt doing more.
Then they will go back to taking selfies of their asses to post on instagram and be in the same exact spot next time.
Kulafarmer, you’ve been talking to one of my neighbors again, haven’t you?
The adventure began last Thursday when ice and rain fell from the sky all day. Making it dangerous to drive.
My office was declared shut through Friday, which I thought was unusual; we have been open In icy conditions before.
Then the power went out late Sunday night. Temperatures outside were in the 20s, so the house temperature dropped pretty quickly into the upper 50s by morning.
We got out the gloves, scarves and sweaters to keep warm during the day, and comforters and sleeping bags. We also got out the lanterns, flashlights, and solar battery chargers. These kept back the dark, and kept our phones charged; we still had phone service, data only. We have plenty of food, fresh, frozen, canned and jarred, so I wasnt worried about having enough food.
We also had natural gas the whole time, which was critical to keeping us happy. The gas fireplace provided a little warmth, although a wood stove would have been ideal. The gas stove made preparing meals almost as easy as before, except the oven didn’t work due to electric controls.
An old fashioned coffee percolator made it a little easier to maintain the morning routine.
We had a camp stove and several grill-size propane tanks ready, in case the gas gave out.
Monday the water pressure began to drop, and I took the cue and began filling up 5 gallon pails. Unfortunately, I only filled two before the water shut off completely. We weren’t worried however, because we had several cases of drinking water, a Berkey filter, and a 9000 gallon swimming pool in the back yard. Then the power came on suddenly! It pulsed every 10 minutes, so we couldn’t use wifi or get connectivity for our devices, but that was ok. We used the microwave, space heaters, chargers, and baked cookies pronto! After an hour, the power went out again – darkness.
Tuesday, we lost cell phone service, and phones were only good for flashlights, and downloaded games, books and music. The temperature was about 55F inside (I have an old fashioned thermometer inside), as the winds outside whipped by, and it dipped down to 9F. We got power for an hour again in the afternoon, buy then lost it again.
Wednesday morning, it was about 49F inside. This was getting real old – getting up to a cold house, cooking, cleaning and hauling water. We ate with paper plates and plastic utensils to avoid dish washing, but our clothes washer was double dead, so we just changed our under clothes, and rewore our outerwear.
We have a camp shower, so we heated water on the stove, poured it in the bag, and then hung it in the shower stall to keep ourselves clean.
Then about 11:25 am, the power came on – no pulses. After an hour or so, we felt assured that it wasn’t going to shut down soon. The inside temperature climbed into the 50s, and then comfortable 60s.
The water slowly started to come back in the afternoon, and full pressure an hour later. We were able to run the dishwasher, but our clothes washer lines were still frozen.
Activites are mostly back to normal, although the roads are.still too icy to try. And an ice storm is coming tomorrow.
Appreciate your sharing your experiences – it’s definitely a teaching moment, and I’m not going to let it go to waste. We’re at the edges of this one, no big problems, but that could change in a heartbeat. Love that you rushed to get cookies baked. Never underestimate the power of comfort food! I’m sending lots of prayers for you all. Please keep us updated.
Stay safe Bobcat!
Texas, and ERCOT, is a political nightmare when it comes to energy. It was that way before Enron and it still is that way. They never learned.
I’ve been trying to ignore the Texas debacle but I can’t.
There is more than enough capacity on the bulk electric system to light Texas, just Texas chose not to allow transmission access and limit tie lines.
The northerners are still burning natural gas because it’s cheaper than coal so there are thousands of megawatts of coal plants still idled. Some are running at economic minimums right now because LMPs are so high it is advantageous to have them ready to make serious money on the real-time market.
It takes about half a work day to start up a coal plant if they aren’t wobbling. Most antiques have a ramp rate of 1.5-3mw/minute from their economic minimum.
Texas made their bed, they can lie in it. It might be a cold bed and they’re paying out the ass for it. There is some serious money being made right now, it may bankrupt some of the smaller utilities in the ERCOT footprint.
Years ago there was a commission that investigated the effects of an EMP on the American electrical grid. The effects would be disastrous to say the least. Among their recommendations was that power companies harden and protect the grid to minimize the effects of an EMP. The commission’s report was largely ignored by the power companies as they said preventive measures were too expensive. This is a theme I keep hearing out of Texas, ERCOT did not do what was necessary to avoid or minimize potential disasters like this storm because of expense. My point is simply that this is a time when every utility should be looking at preventive measures and putting them into place to minimize the effects of disasters that may come their way. Most people would pay for the rate increase if they knew it was going to preventive measures. Prevention is cheaper than repairs.
Another theme I hear is how those who are prepared are doing better than the unprepared and they are helping their neighbors and family. Kudos to them. What an opportunity to teach others to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. We have to take responsibility for ourselves.
Tom, from experience, they do not learn to prep. They only learn that you will provide, and they then tell a friend and then they show up also for the freebees.
It’s always (or often) about the money, right?
“How is it possible that a nuclear power plant in Texas had to shutter operations due to freezing weather, but nuclear power plants can operate without disruption in Russia?”
“The answer is simple – the South Texas Nuclear Power Station failed to winterize its facilities. After all, whoever thought Arctic conditions would be seen in on the Gulf of Mexico?”
>> Texas Failed To Winterize Nuclear Plant Leading To Reactor Shut Down
It goes back to initial “design Conditions” for the engineers. If they failed to include the possibility of an Arctic Blast type weather in those initial conditions, the design could very possibly fail outside of their ‘design condition window”. Hence, water lines not protected from freezing, underground lines buried only a foot or so below grade subject to freezing, wind machines not designed for ice storms, etc. Classic example of “design conditions” not being broad enough to protect against weather, the tragic loss of the Space Shuttle due to the failure of an O-ring. Apparently the designers did not take into consideration of O-ring failure when the temperatures went below freezing. Never happens in Florida, right?
Minerjim, “Shuttle due to the failure of an O-ring. Apparently the designers did not take into consideration of O-ring failure when the temperatures went below freezing.” Actually the manufacture of the O rings DID tell NASA do not launch because of the cold conditions.
NASA ignored them and launched anyways.
Not the manufacturer’s fault, they did warn NASA. the Engineers at NASA just did not think that colder weather would really cause a failure, or completely spaced it. My point was that maybe the engineers should have expanded their design conditions to account for low temps in the first place. of course, that usually costs more $$, so they did a “risk assessment” on it, and decided to design only for warmer weather, for whatever reason.
Minerjim, I agree with you to an extent, NASA designed the booster rockets so, any design changes need NASA approval and cost analysis, which means an amendment ( IE. renegotiation) to the current contract.
The engineers from the o ring manufacture were yelling and fighting with NASA engineers over the phone, trying to get NASA to scrub the launch.
I have also seen video of past launches where they filmed the joints on the solid rocket boosters and you could see jets of flame coming out of the joint(s). These launches took place in a little warmer temps but, still cold for Florida.
Anybody concerned that this may have been a planned attack by weather wars? Consider that a number of companies recently announced plans to leave West Coast areas in favor of Texas?, a number of Cali transplants to Tx, Etc? Consider also that TX announced a desire to NOT be part of socialist America? Just curious.
If I understand correctly it was discovered by the military in the early 1950’s or possible the 1960’s it could have been used on countries that did not wish to listen to big brother.
It was under military control then it went to corporation(s) control. Wonder who received the kick backs on that little side venture? 🙄 Believe that is why they have stations in Australia and Alaska, believe the other one could be in Greenland(line of sight).
Hypothetical, but this occurs after Tesla, is pulling their big bucks from Kommie fornia headed to the lands of Texas. hummmm🙄🤔 time for more kool aide.
I’ve wondered that myself. A while back, read a bit about HAARP and attempts at weather modification. Not sure what their current capabilities are, but I’m sure given the nature of the control-hungry global psychopaths they’d use the tech if they had it.
Absolutely. Texas would be nothing but a pain in biden’s backside. Therefore the need to kill Texas while they can and does anyone know why biden seems to have been “disappeared ” for several weeks?
. . . .
Occam’s razor. If it howls like the run-in to the Modern Grand Solar Minimum and crashes in on us like a GSM, it’s most likely the GSM.
. . . .
Dr. Zharkova postulated five years ago, and NASA and other scientific bodies have finally caught up and concurred with, a modern GSM running 2020 through 2055. With, according to her, dark cold years spanning 2028-2032. Too short for a little ice age, but predicted to be more intense than the Maunder Minimum which lasted twice as long.
. . . .
However, it seems to have arrived earlier than even Zharkova predicted. Bad weather last couple growing seasons, and NASA adjusting astronaut’s time in space the past 5-6 years due to increased cosmic (not solar) radiation, are both indicative of the start of the GSM. We may be in for a wild ride for the rest of our lives (those of us on the Black Diamond slope of our lives, that is.) As they say, once you’re over the hill, you pick up speed.
The fact the Earth has been cooling off for quite some time now is causing the Democrats lots of trouble, as they thought they could continue to use Man Caused Global Warming, as the excuse for their looting and tyranny.
Once it becomes common knowledge that Human created Co2 has NOTHING to do with causing Global Warming…nothing…and the planet is actually getting colder and colder (which is MUCH more dangerous), they will be forced to change their propaganda for fear of being laughed at.
I am certain the continued cooling of the planet will quickly reduce the ability to many places to feed their populations and cause population shifts, as people try to move toward the Equator.
First the temperatures change…THEN…the ice pack follows millennia later, as it grows in place and does not move like a glacier.
Take a look at the extent of the ice sheet from the end of the last Ice Age, say 15,000 years ago. Then, move yourself to where it did not reach and far enough away from it’s edge as is possible for you to stand.
This should not be a surprise to any paleo-climatologist…
Im waiting for gates to do his blocking out the sun stuff, that should be fun when it backfires and causes a mini ice age.
Kulafarmer – let’s pretend you’re Bill Gates and I’ve got you on an interview: “Bill, does this idea of yours of clouding the skies by sending aluminum fragments into oribit to block the sun’s rays make it more difficult for solar energy to work? Huh, Bill, hun??”
yes it does,
And millions may starve and die Bill. Is that part of the plan as well?
You know it is. It would probably be good for all of us to just admit that to ourselves about now. We have ourselves, and hopefully, each other. Good vs. evil. Bout of the century.
farmgirl, it might be good to figure out what varieties of food plants will do ok with lower solar heat and light. Everything needs sunlight to survive, even us, the fact that these idgits are wanting to dim the sun is mind boggling, at least if you have a conscience and are capable of deductive reason, they are psycho to want to tamper with the atmosphere, especially when you hear scientist talking about 1-2 degree changes being environmentally significant. Just think of the ramifications if these yahoos are wrong and they succeed in lowering global temps by 10 degrees or more, for us on these islands it may well mean the death of countless endemic endangered species of plants and animals/birds/insects/fish and aquatic life.
Theories from overpaid overstuffed privately funded so called scientist should not be the basis for actions that could damage countless echosystems the globe over.
I’ve been thinking a lot about that. Along with growing as much as I possibly can, I’ll be running some experiments, too.
To a point, adaptation might be possible, but we also need time for that. Mass extinction events happened because environmental conditions changed too quickly and sharply for life to adjust. There’s only so much we can do, and only so much the plants can do. Still, mass extinction events didn’t kill everything, obviously…
You can’t fix stupid. Blocking the sun is some pretty big stupid.
Just look at all the myths around the world of crawling out of a boat, a cave, a tree, a hole, after the flood. People who were able to hide in a relatively temperature controlled area, survived.
And people always tell me i am crazy to go underground, “its so dangerous!”. truthfully, i feel safer underground than i do on the surface.Call me a troglodyte, but underground has its advantages.
Lauren, they have found huge underground”cities” and living areas all over the world. Middle East,China,Europe. The so called paid shills experts try to say they are only 1,000 years old or so. You would think there would be mention of it more in history if it was only a 1,000 years old?
Others in the field think they are 10-12,000 years old. Around the last mini ice age.
We have our plants under grow lights in the basements of a couple of the cabins. Dry consistent temperatures for sure. We did well with our lettuces and cherry tomatoes. Peppers did pretty well too.
I think a greenhouse will be needed to control temperatures with the changes in weather patterns. Folks should think about one for the coming growing season. Just my opinion…
High tunnel or green house That is the question. Leon on u tube Gardening with Leon tells the difference. and explains -that each layer- of cover over plants -enable 8 degrees cold to be mitigated.He used to set his up as heated greenhouses was not economically possible.- now uses high tunnels and zones of protection draped by extra plastic tents as needed. each layer of protection should be separated by airspace..
we also need to invest in thermometers to run in to the soil/air area near plants- to avoid over exposure and guessing… have begun to get daylight shop lights. and extra daylight bulbs, heat lamp fixtures and red bulbs.. for grow areas and for animals.
Original Just saying while extra layers adds some 8 degrees or so it ALSO reduces the amount of light available to the plants for growth. You already mentioned the need to Operate the Hoop houses to avoid OVERHEATING and stunting or killing your plants-small livestock in there.
If you have a stand of firewood available a Crimean Oven will allow safe in the floor heating for your raised beds-potted greenhouses. Earth berming reduces the wind heat loss like standing out of the wind in a sunny frozen day as well as earth thermal mass helping like a Basement Apartment in extreme weather.
Also when greenhouse plastic sheeting becomes hard to get due to wind damage-UV and such your earth bermed uses a LOT Less of that Plastic or Glass. Chinese in the Steppes use roll down insulation of grass matts to keep the night cold out and similar in the summer to keep Excess Sun heat out. Side effect is to protect that valuable Green House Plastic from wear and tear.
Firewood the original solar heat collector :-) Earth Berming the original solar thermal battery.
( interview answer)
Well that would just be an unintended added benefit of the plan.
These would mostly be the elderly , the poor, you know, the disposable ones. Of no or not much use to anyone.
As I said, an unintended but very beneficial by product of OUR great plan.
I guess this is gallows humor Friday…LOL
Its ALWAYS gallows humor for me. Lol. Either laugh or cry or get super Pissed!!
I have to laugh. Hope you are healing well.
I was just given the OK to drive today from PT. Woohoo. Too bad my baby isn’t drivable. But its possible she may rise from the dead. Friend of ours in car club has a huge garage setup and thinks he can fix the frame. Got my fingers crossed!!!
Hope ya have a good day. I’ll bet your DW has something good cooking in her kitchen today. Better go in and volunteer to be her taster. Thats what my hubby does. Lol
Thai Tom Yum soup and chicken Satay with her slightly spicy peanut dipping sauce. Started with Thai cold beef salad. One of my favorites btw. Thin sliced beef slightly rare chilled and mixed with salad veggies with a thin ginger salad dressing. It was so good.
I’m in my office with a glass of Thai iced coffee and almond sugar cookies. Wifey spoiled me big time today.
Got the cats Chaos and Turmoil spread out across the desk and the dogs asleep in the chair and the big comfy pillow. The weather may be crappy outside but life is good here in my office.
Petitioned my son to return to night sentry duty. Maybe in a couple of weeks he said. I didn’t protest too much…LOL!
Miss standing watch with my Grandson though. Seeing him turn into a good man right before my eyes. Gives me hope…
BJH I guess you better get to planting peanuts then Friend! I’d Miss all that awesome cooking and frankly here in NH I *think* I could grow all the Thai Ingredients. Grid down underground shelter for man and beast seems wise. Earth Bermed Greenhouse work well here if you have a Crimean Oven style soil heater. Think Rocket mass heater poor man style. Used in Field Hospitals of the time to keep tents dry and reasonably warm. Firewood, Solar Energy stored for my use.
NH MICHAEL, I think it would be prudent to plan for it now. Start scrounging material now before some “expert ” Hollywood type twitters about it and the clueless hordes start buying up all the supplies. Remember when soil and seeds were scarce due to everyone starting a garden? I really expect that knee jerk reaction to happen alot this year and beyond. Earth bermed greenhouse is a good idea. Seen some great videos on them.I really believe now is the time to be thinking out of the box when it comes to food growing.
Most Thai herbs will grow in a window box. Lemon grass will grow well in a deep pot. Ginger too.Anise gets pretty tall. Not sure if it will grow there but anise seeds are pretty reasonable. Thai basil grows well in pots. Love Thai food so I am motivated to make sure the spices are available for wifey…LOL
Also Bill Jenkins Horse when everybody around you is growing potatoes MAYBE potatoes are not a good trade item? History shows the value of spices to liven up basic foods.
During the Great Depression my Grandmother and Grand Pappy thrived because they went the extra steps to do needed seeds, plant starts, fruit bushes grafting and laying hens where others in Golden Colorado were not so successful. Their gardens-Greenhouses were set up around the hen house. Fencing protecting the gardens was Expensive but useful, also protected the valuable chickens from predator’s 2 and 4 legged. Her compost piles were legendary and a great source of chicken food during often frozen winters.
She wove willow baskets to protect fat hen and Comfrey from the chickens while allowing them to eat from the Calcium RICH plants as Oyster shells were expensive in Golden CO. Her egg shells and cooked broth bones were ground up and fed to chickens as grit. Kept HER Chickens and Eggs Strong while others had rickety sick chickens and such. Allowing the chickens to clean up the garden spaces kept bugs and grubs down AND fed the chickens. Last years chicken yards was this years gardens.
Man o man, thats making my mouth water. I love Thai food!! I make extra of the peanut dipping sauce when we have it. I could put that on my shoe and be happy with it!!
Its pretty awesome watching the Grands grow up to be good men. I love watching the grands here with me. Also gives me hope. When we go places and someone remarks on their behavior, I am so PROUD, I could just burst.
Certainly not an easy job, but one that needs to be done and done right.
They are FAR from perfect little angels, wouldn’t want them to be, I would think they were sick if they didn’t fight and be poops at times.
Glad you have the opportunity to watch him grow into a man you can be proud of.
Best gift of all.
I totally get that you were not too bummed about standing watch again. Its winter! Lol
I also am not looking forward to the day they say, OK, you can run the vacuum again!! Lol
Glad you are healing and your wife is still spoiling ya. As Dennis says, Life is Good!
Have a great night.
Don’t you mean that they will be force do change their propaganda back? If I remember correctly, scientists attempted to cause a global cooling panic back in the 1970s, then Al Gore changed it to global warming to keep the “fossil fuels BAD” mantra going, because the earth’s temperature started rising.
Now that it’s cooling again, they will probably bring out the mummified bodies of the previous “scientists” to start “The Big Freeze” fear mongering again, and say, “See, we predicted it back in the 70s!!”
I’ve been watching the news. God help all of you folks in Texas. I appears to be pretty bad down there on tv so I pray for your health and safety.
There is a lot of talk about “investigating” the loss of power while people are in the cold and dark. I do wish there was less emphasis on seeking out people to blame and more effort placed on fixing the problem and restoring power in the present term.
My thanks at this time go to the heroes driving the utility trucks and restoring power to our homes. Yes, I was prepared for a loss of power myself. Easier to say after your power is restored.
I hope the future brings an emphasis on clearing of large mature hazard trees from around power and utility lines. I see this as an ignored area of maintaining infrastructure In my AO, this was a problem during the wild fires last fall in addition to the ice storm we just dealt with up here.
I hope we see some big changes in Texas after the latest fiasco. Another bit of irony, so many cities have their power grid down and unable to pump water. Many cities are bringing in huge trailer mounted oil field generators to supply power. ERCOT is asking those not being used in cities to be attached to the grid to help supply power. Because of this ERCOT is having to pay top dollar for wattage. That means those huge gen units are bringing in a train full of money for the companies that are willing to run them for power generation.
Buckle up! The next storm arrived here a couple of hours ago. Here being coastal Olympic Peninsula in WA. Temperature’s dropping.
Everything we know about climate change, especially when the climate turn colder…is that it is very quick…much like a switch being thrown…and not a slow progression.
Because this current inter-glacial is so damned old, I would not be surprised it has just ended. After all, the warmest it EVER is going to get, this time round, already happened about 6k years ago, and we have been cooling ever since.
I only WISH the Earth were heating up, rather than cooling down!
you folks tend to be warmer and drier than Seattle area?
. . . .
I’m a few miles in from the coast out on the Olympic Peninsula. Seattle is right on the water of the Puget Sound. Seattle is therefore slightly warmer. I get 115 inches of rain a year as there is only a row of low hills between me and ocean. Seattle is in the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains, just to my east, and gets 37 inches of rain a year.
. . . .
. . . .
Current storm will be wet here and turn to snow over the Cascade Range. Last of last week’s snow should melt tonight.
115” is a lot o rain,,,
i guess its the sound facing part of the peninsula thats warmer, knew id heard that somewhere.
still think somewhere up there might be a nice place to live
Kulafarmer, You may be thinking of the north and east coasts of the peninsula on the Straits of Juan de Fuca, the Salish Sea, and the Puget Sound. Much sunnier than here. That said, it is lovely here in the rain forest – clean and green. We had one day of heavy snow, and half a day without power. That was due to wind bringing down a tree. Nearly all power outages have been due to wind since I’ve lived here.
We’ve got a small one starting over in my neck of the woods. These winter storms, while potentially serious, are such a winter way of life for our family they’re incorporated into our plans/schedule. We may all have to start doing that, even those living much further south. I made my errand run, guesstimated how much time I’d have, and made it home just before the flakes started flying.
I hope you’re getting snow, not ice, and that the power stays on for you. Stay safe and cozy!
The Mainstream Media LIES ! There is no power shortage ! If you look at broadcasts from Texas over the past four days entire cities around the state are still lit up and working fine. Someone has cut power to residential areas on purpose. This looks like an attack against Texas for them wanting to succeed.
Groot, the majority of power outages in my area of deep southeast Texas were from broken power lines. We lost power because of physical damage to the infrastructure. Utility workers are getting people back on line at a rapid pace in my area.
– We have now had power for two days without any blackouts (knock on wood). Water is still an issue, but more and more folks are coming online and letting people know on Facebook and the like.
Our waterline here at the house remains frozen at some point outside the wellhouse, but weatherman is saying this should be our last single-digit night and we are expected to make it to the mid-thirties Saturday and as high as sixties by nest Friday, so we are in hopes of finding and fixing our water issues here.
Used about half a face cord of wood in the fireplace, and about five gallons of kerosene over four days with limited or no power available. I had put off restocking wood. Our lowest temp was -3 and winds to 50 mph.
We have multiple battery and non-electrical sources of light, as well as a couple of big (one 800W and one 1500W) inverters and a 7500-kw generator, which as I mentioned we set up and did not use.
We did use some of my stored gasoline as there was none available commercially, either sold out or no power available. It was intended for generator, but I needed to do some running around; it got repurposed. We used about ten gallons, haven’t been able to restock that just yet.
Not much of an after-action report, but the problem is not totally resolved. I will update as needed.
– Papa S.
You’re almost through the weather. Looks like warmer temps are on the way. Good choice to keep the gennie on the sidelines. If you come across plumbing/piping supplies on your forays out, might get what you think you’d need for repairs, sooner than later. You can always return it if not needed, or help out a neighbor.
So glad you can post and check in. My thought and prayers going out in a torrent for you and others in Texas tonight.
What type of pipe is underground from the wellhouse?Copper,galvinize,plastic?
I hope it hasn’t ruptured on you.
Fuel is always an issue. Using it for travel is a priority. You would of used quite a bit of those 10 gallons of fuel if you fired up the 7500 watt gennie over a couple days. So it looks like it worked out. Good to see ya got through it…
if you end up digging up your water line from the well might be worth adding a heating line wraped around it and insulating it at least with foam JIC if you can swing it.
heck, if he digs it up, he should just bury it deeper and forget the heat tape. 30″ deep should be enough.
Agreed, even 2 feet should do it.
NRP & Blue,
Yup. Anytime you can find a non-powered way to do it, you should take advantage of that. Gonna be a quite a few lines dug up and replaced in short order. Planting them deeper also protects them from possible physical damage from the surface. The PEX water service lines they use now are pretty beefy, can handle way more physical abuse than copper or PE.
– Waterline was originally copper, part of it is now PVC plastic. Currently about 18” deep. Really do not want to dig it up, but if that happens, well. it is what it is.
I have around 300’ of PVC and assorted fittings on hand.
Also have Daisy, my Lab-Boxer mix helping me type this.
We will see how it goes.
– BTW, someone suggested Shark Bites. I do have a few, but the manufacturer does not recommend them for buried service. I did attempt that anyway, had poor results. I would have to agree with the people who make them for that.
pex isnt really for in ground use, can be buried in concrete but they do not recommend burying and fittings in the pour,
for in ground or buried applications use a Driscoll type pipe with compression fittings,
just for safe side, want the stuff to last!
Depends on the rating of the PEX. anyone replacing potable water lines would be smart to get the specs on the pipe they plan on using. Look for “NSF potable water ” rating. Should also tell you about burying. Just so everyone understands, PEX is a Polyethylene (PE) plastic, the “X” stands for “cross-linked” which is a production process that gives it durable properties. As for “shark Bite” connectors, i would not use them underground, go with buriable bronze fittings for water service, pricey, but you do not want to go “cheap” on your water service. my 2 cents for the day.
– Spent a few days last summer looking for ¾” buriable bronze fittings for repairs to a copper joint about 4’ from the outer wall of the wellhouse.
That is incidentally where I will be checking for any leaks first. Those fittings are not available locally, hence the PVC.
good place too look for your freeze spot, from my experience. Your concrete well house wall acts as a conductor (earth acts more like an insulator compared to solid concrete). Bet the line froze just outside of the wellhouse where the line passed through into the dirt.
In a video it showed a wrap that should go around those ‘shark bite’ fitting to protect them from the soils causing erosion to the metals.
The pipe will not be deep under the soil here at this place. We can not use PVC where I found these lines buried so close to the surface. Reason we are using PEX for that area. Previous owners did not bury anything down very far, dh & I have had to make several alterations. This one is what caught us both by surprise.
Papa S, sharkbites became popular because most folks can’t sweat copper and for ease of installation. Transitioning between copper and pex,cpvc plastic pipe is easier. If you have to bury one you need to wrap it like a gas line pipe.
You can look up depth requirements for underground water lines at the National Weather Service site.
I figure your line is already buried at the right depth for your area going on the history of the sustained average freezing temperatures for the last 100 years. The question is , will these types of freezes be the “new normal”? Plan accordingly. You can buy a pressure gauge that screws on a hose bib from HD/Hardware stores. I would get one and see if your system maintains pressure when you are not using water. If it won’t then you can figure you have an under ground leak.
Better than digging up a line thatsurvived the freeze…
– Dad insisted I needed to learn to sweat copper fittings, among other things, at about age fifteen years. Very useful skill.
Depth of pipe is at recommended point for our area. We have far more days at 110° than -3°.
I ended up replacing that bronze compression fitting with a PVC compression fitting. It fit, but I remain a bit suspicious of it.
Most of my underground lines are 1½” PVC. The only copper pipe remaining is the original ¾” rigid copper waterline for the house itself.
At 66 years, I really don’t want to dig up and replace it unless I have to. And yes, I am aware that I am not going to get any younger.
– Forgot to mention, already have a pressure gauge plumbed in from original installation. It’s just inside the wellhouse, about a foot from the wall.
You said the water line was copper all the way from the house to the wellhouse? Have you thought about hooking up an arc welder to it, one lead in the well house the other at the house?? I personnaly have not done this, but i have seen it done. It uses the copper pipe as a resistance and heats up.
-No, there’s a section of PVC in the middle from a repair years ago. I just happen to know about it. No jumper wire on it.
True,,, depends on $ too though and his ground, we opted for heat tape a bunch of times because going deeper would require a hoe ram,,, that was up in boulder county
“Boulder County”……. well there ya go! enough said! LOL.
Yep,,, even in the 90s it was libville, we were up in the mountains though,, lots of old hippies
my daughter went to school in Nederland, home of the original “frozen dead guy”, aka “grandpa Bredo”. Those folks up there know how to survive the cold, let me tell you. One of the best things i ever did was teach my daughter to drive on the road from Nederand down to the front range, in the winter, on ice. Kid has never been in an accident while driving.
yep,,, great place, had some really nice folks up there. I used to get a kick out of the yuppies sliding down boulder canyon sideways in their BMWs,, never could figure that out why,,, i drove a F350 with studded mud tires, never slid ever.
– Ground here is a sandy loam with the most common large rock being a concrete-like sedimentary limestone called caliche. If you see pictures of west Texas and see a white ‘dirt’ road, that’s caliche. That’s what my driveway is, and it has held up, like the copper pipe, since the house was built in the 70’s. It’s the stuff you see around the top of mesas, too. If you have caliche hardpan, it’s like digging through several feet of cement.
We do have a variety of igneous rocks, thanks to a couple of extinct volcanoes over NRP’s way. They are smaller rocks and not usually much of a problem.
PS, I know about caliche, I live on the Edwards Plateau in central TX. I go six inches down and I hit it. Couple times almost had to get a jack hammer to break it up but, a pick axe and a lot of sweat got thru.
How thick is that caliche layer at your place? Ever thought of digging a hole through it, then mining out a space under it for storage? If it is as massive and hard as y’all say, you might have a good thing to utilize right under your feet. Just my old miner brain working a little overtime on Friday night.(time to call it a week!)
Caliche, Gods answer to CONCRETE.
And when wet, tis slicker than an Ice Storm in Texas…..
Ok, Ok, that was bad…. but tis bad stuff for sure.
Minerjim ,there was a story about a homeless guy in Vegas who did just that. Dug a nice size area out for himself in the caliche. Nice and cool in the heat and warm when temperatures dropped. Of course when the authorities found out they had to evict him and fill it in. For his “own safety” of course…
NRP is right. It’s like digging through concrete at times.
Minerjim, Yes, I have thought of doing that but, the ground shifts to much here. The geologists and builders say you can’t put in a basement/cellar because of it.
Central TX: Power is still out for 10% of my small community; water has been out since Monday. Our local HEB grocery store closed their doors earlier today because they are out of food/shelves are empty. Lines have been wrapped around the parking lot for past two days. There’s still plenty of bagged ice at convenient stores, so we grabbed several bags to melt for water. Outside, the ice/snow are melting quickly, so we’re using 5-gal buckets to collect water.
I still find it ODD that only Texas in the deep south chill is hit so hard. Louisiana, Georgia, Mississippi right next door, Oklahoma? But only TX threatened to secede and Tx was courting Silicon valley….HMMMM
Read this morning that the situation in Texas was compounded, maybe created, by the refusal of the Energy Secretary, under President Biden’s orders, to allow ERCOT to ramp up production to meet the anticipated demand before the cold snap began.
—An article on usasupreme (dotcom) shows ERCOT filed a Request for Emergency Order…”to preserve the reliability of the bulk electric power system” on February 14th. They were trying to stay ahead of the increased demand, by asking customers to conserve as much as possible, but also asking for authorization to increase output to handle the emergency.
—DOE issued Order 202-21-1, which you can find in the article, or maybe DOE website (?), basically saying “no”. Here’s an excerpt from the order:
—“…ERCOT has been alerted that numerous generation units will be unable to operate at full capacity without violating federal air quality or other permit limitations.”
It doesn’t need to be an EMP that takes out our grid, when we need it most. Our own government can do it.
Central TX update: It’s a beautiful, sunny 73 degrees outside today. We feel very blessed after such a harsh, unusual winter weather event this past week. Normally in the winter, we’re still running our a/c window unit in our bedroom at night, so dealing with 4 degree temps in an old, uninsulated house with no heat, especially at night, 10-12 hr power blackouts over the course of 4-5 days, and no running water (still!), has been quite sobering for us.
Nevertheless, God watched over us and kept my family safe and warm through some really cold nights. We had several heavy, homemade blankets to cover up with; solar, hand-crank lanterns for light; solar phone charger; plenty of food; a Sawyer filtration system; and enough bottled drinking water to get us by (this time).
As challenging as this week has been and as obvious as our holes are in our winter preps, I am more concerned about the possibility of our grid failing during our long summer months. We’re simply not ready for that.
ERCOT has five Board Members who have tendered their resignations in the wake of intense criticism over the handling of situation and the fact that they do not even live in the state of Texas.
Seems a bit odd for a standalone grid to ever choose Board Members who live elsewhere.