As Brantley pointed out yesterday, the Texas Public Utility Commission got down to hard numbers last week as it inched further toward what appears to be inevitable — a huge increase in the current $3,000 per megawatt-hour cap on the price of wholesale electricity during times when demand is high. Texas needs more power, and power producers say they need more money to build the generation plants. Run it all through the magical mystery maze of the the electric market, with it’s “peak” this and “base load” that and long time frames, and what we end up with is anybody’s guess — provided anybody’s guess is “higher prices.”

Unfair Park’s commenters — as cynical a bunch of SOBs who ever trawled the Internet — continually express doubt that the big power companies won’t just pocket any extra money and run. That’s the problem with being cursed with a long memory. You pesky Unfair Parkers remember all the promises made and broken when Texas deregulated the electricity market a decade ago. Or sort of deregulated it … still haven’t figure out how price caps, the PUC and ERCOT figure into a “deregulated” scheme.

Continue reading at the Dallas Observer.