Howdy Folks!! Welcome to Texas’ good neighbor policy

July 7, 2011 § Leave a comment

 . . . raining SOx, NOx, coal soot, and mercury on its neighboring states!

Political leaders and utility insiders in Texas are pounding the EPA once again.  In the wake of an anti government biennium legislative session and in the glow of the governor’s presidential aspirations, there is not much hope for protecting the environment in Texas or even in Texas’ neighboring states.  So, eat our soot Oklahoma and Louisiana.  Are you surprised? 

Simply stated, The EPA is concerned that some of the dirtiest coal-fired plants in Texas not only are fouling the air in the Lone Star State but also are sending their toxic message to downwind neighbors: Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana.  If this is the case, then the EPA has regulations that would require these plants to install equipment to reduce emissions. 

Not surprisingly, Texas politicians and businesses are not happy with the thought of spending money to employ yesterday’s scrubber technology to clean Texas’s dirty coal-fired plants.  According to news reports, lobbyists for Luminant, the wholesale power generation unit of Energy Future Holdings, are complaining that this regulation may trigger the closure of four antique coal-fired plants.

Martin Lake coal-fired plant

Martin Lake coal-fired plant

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Panic . . . business leaders apparently don’t like clean air either and are worried the price of electricity may increase.  Oh no.  Republicans and Democrats are complaining to Washington that the EPA should protect business not those of us that breathe air for living, and of course, our misnamed TCEQ (Texas Commission on Environmental Quality) with its three commissioners carefully selected by the governor whine that EPA decisions punish Texas.  Punish?  Really?

STOP!!  TEXAS, are you there?  Have you had enough?  It’s time to take a stand!

  • Governor, PUCT, TCEQ, Texas businesses; you are wrong.  The people of Texas are more interested in a clean air than cheap and dirty energy.  Just try asking.
  • TCEQ . . . honestly, consider resigning.
  • Texas politicians . . . who are your constituents?  Dirty air is not a political ideology.
  • Energy Future Holdings . . . is this our energy future – dirty, antiquated coal-fired plants? 
  • EPA . . . thank you . . . our children need a voice in this fight.

Citizens of Texas . . . what’s up?  

It was the 4th of July . . . now it’s time to act independently.  Install a small-scale solar electricity system on your home or business and retire those dirty coal plants with your own actions.  The governor and the state legislature do not make it easy, but they cannot stop you.  Take a stand for clean energy . . . one home, one business at a time.

A grid-tied solar electricity system is affordable, it’s economic, and it’s scalable.  A small-scale solar electricity system works just fine.  No fuel, no water, no noise, no moving parts, no emissions.  Your solar electricity system will last 30 to 40 years.

Say no to Texas insiders; say yes to a clean sustainable energy future . . . just a little at a time.  Do not wait on assistance or inspiration from your politicians.  They are busy.
Chet Boortz, CEO


[The comments, positions, and opinions stated above are my own and may or may not represent those of SES 21 USA and its affiliate companies.]


Texas Cracks the Top Ten in PV Installations . . . Finally!

March 15, 2011 § 1 Comment

. . . Can Top Five Status be Far Away?

The SEIA and GTM have released their annual report, U.S. Solar Insight 2010TM Year in Review, and it’s official, Texas finally is ranked among the top ten states in annual PV installations at 23MW or a 2.6% U.S. market share.  This is a five times jump from 4.5MW in 2009.  About 70% of the Texas PV total is utility-scale.2010 US PV Installations MWdc

Thank you San Antonio and Austin (MOU’s) for local RPS’s and demand incentives and Oncore for a one time rebate program and TARP and ARRA (SECO in Texas) for opening PV markets with stimulus funding.  2010 . . . it was a good year in Texas.

OK you Texas bashers; I can hear your snicker: 2.6% market share … wow.  Well, what makes this a remarkable achievement for Texas is that there is virtually no help at the state policy level, the Texas environmental commission (TCEQ) is suing the EPA to dumb down air quality, the state’s two largest markets (Houston & Dallas/Fort Worth) are essentially non players with deregulated IOU’s, net metering regulations are contrived to be ineffective, HOA issues, interconnections and more.  This is an oil and gas and lignite coal state thank you.

Even so, consider this:

  • Texas is ranked 2 in state population
  • Texas is ranks 2 in state GDP
  • Texas produces an consumes more electricity than any other state
  • Texas electricity rates and utility bills are among the highest in the nation
  • Texas leads the nation in wind powered generation
  • Texas has enormous solar power potential

So with its 2.6% market share in hand, what’s next for Texas?  Based on the current utility-scale PV project pipeline in Central Texas, I predict Texas will rank 5 or 6 by 2012; and based on the attributes listed above . . . Texas will rank 1 or 2 by 2016.

How does Texas advance from number 10 to number 1 in PV installations . . .  one house, one business, one commercial building, one industrial facility, and one municipal building at a time! The momentum comes from users, the economic, social, and health beneficiaries of PV generation, it will not come from the state capitol or electric utilities.

Texas has a ferocious mindset of independence, and this coincides perfectly with distributive PV generation.  The industry lobbyists (policy makers) in Austin may not be enthralled by PV, but they cannot prevent it . . . it’s your home or business; it’s your electricity bill; it’s your choice; and it’s your distributive generation PV system . . . it’s a ground swell movement.

In Texas, distributive PV generation provides an attractive economic return today.  It’s scalable and affordable, and it only will get better as the cost of conventional electricity increases year after year after year.

It’s time.  Go Solar.  Go Texas . . . the Lone Star State!

Chet Boortz, CEO


[The comments, positions, and opinions stated above are my own and may or may not represent those of SES 21 USA and its affiliate companies.]

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