Bernard L. McNamee, who
returned to McGuireWoods in December 2020 after serving as a commissioner on the
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, was interviewed by national news
organizations covering the tragic power outage that left millions of people
in Texas without power during a historic cold snap in February.
In a Feb. 19, 2021, Wall Street Journal article, titled “The Texas Freeze: Why the Power Grid Failed,” McNamee commented on the challenges facing wholesale electric markets as
they attempt to integrate a changing mix of generation resources.
“The premises of that paradigm have changed,” said McNamee, a law firm
partner and McGuireWoods Consulting senior advisor. “That’s why public
policy makers and electricity officials need to address some of the
McNamee also discussed the crisis on
Bloomberg Radio’s “Balance of Power” program Feb. 18, 2021. McNamee told host David Westin, “[T]here’s going to
be a reckoning in trying to address the problems” exposed by the Texas
outages. The interview begins at the program’s 1:32:38 mark.
“The problems are really related to market design, pricing and planning and
there’s going to need to be work in order to ensure that reliable power can
be provided in the future because there will be future events,” McNamee
In a Feb. 21, 2021, Politico story, titled “Texas and California Built Different Power Grids, but Neither Stood Up
to Climate Change,” McNamee said an imminent infrastructure bill is likely to include energy
provisions, but cautioned there is unlikely to be one simple solution.
“It’s going to be a lot of hard work, a lot of thinking by smart people to
come up with practical solutions,” he said.