Apparently, Eskom hasn’t set up operations in Texas. The huge US state officially implemented load shedding this week, due to an arctic winter freeze shutting down the electricity grid AND water supply chains. The blame game between administrators, politicians, and clean energy groups has been rumbling on for days – but the situation remains grim:
Nearly two million people were still without power early Thursday in Texas, the oil and gas capital of the United States, with some still facing water shortages. The deadly cold spell pummeling the country is set to head east before the weekend. Power companies in Texas have had to resort to rolling blackouts, so grids avoid being overloaded. Sounds familiar…
Texas load shedding compared to ‘failed state’
Beto O’Rourke, a former Democratic presidential candidate from Texas, told MSNBC television the situation in the Lone Star State was “worse than you are hearing” – saying that the Republican-controlled province is ‘nearing a failed state’.
“Folks have gone days now without electricity. They’re suffering. So much of this was avoidable. America’s energy capital can’t provide the energy needed to warm and power people’s homes in Texas. We are nearing a failed state, here.”
South Africans in Texas caught up in load shedding drama
More than 30 storm-related deaths have been reported by media in the United States since the cold weather arrived last week – many in traffic accidents. President Joe Biden was forced to postpone until Friday a visit to the Pfizer vaccine manufacturing site in Kalamazoo, Michigan, while federal government offices in Washington were to be closed Thursday.
One South African expat, meanwhile, told EWN that they had moved TO Texas so they could escape load shedding. Eish…
“It’s funny to think that we left South Africa to get away from it. When I was in South Africa, mom and I would play Scrabble by candlelight because we were in load shedding and we never thought we would see it again and now we have to deal with blackouts and dangerous weather…Texas isn’t built for snow and it’s snowing.”
- – Subsequently, this interview sparked a fierce reaction from our side of the Atlantic…
South Africans in Texas on the radio complaining about the blackouts caused by the snow. Complaining that they moved away from SA because of the blackouts. Texas attracts the same type of white South Africans that Australia attracts.
— Natalie (@nataliecd_za) February 18, 2021
They left South Africa for Texas because of load shedding only to experience it there also life of a caucasian
— Ntshavheni ( YNWA ) (@iamntshavhi) February 18, 2021
‘Eskom is going global’ – Twitter
Despite the deadly nature of the storm and its subsequent load shedding schedule, South Africans have continued to point out the ironies currently facing Texas. Sympathies, much like our own reserves of energy, remain in short supply:
South Africans in America seeing Americans complain about load shedding pic.twitter.com/ZtvHLuYirl
— KÆge (@se_kage) February 17, 2021
Load shedding in Texas Eskom is going global.
— Kaiyla Swift (@UNI0NH0USE) February 17, 2021
What level of load-shedding is Texas on today?
— marcel (@marcel__za) February 16, 2021
- – [Additional reporting from AFP]