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Four leading board members of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) announced they will resign Wednesday as the electric grid operator faces scrutiny for its role in statewide power outages that occurred last week during a winter storm.

ERCOT board chair Sally Talberg, vice chair Peter Cramton, finance and audit chair Terry Bulger and human resources and governance committee chair Raymond Hepper will resign during an ERCOT board meeting Wednesday, according to a notice filed with the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC).

Board member nominee Craig Ivey was expected to fill a vacant position on the board but has withdrawn his application, ERCOT attorneys mentioned in Tuesday’s notice.

At least 4 members of ERCOT board of directors indicate their intent to resign after Wednesday’s board meeting, citing “recent concerns about out-of-state board leadership…”
Comes 2 days before ERCOT will be questioned by lawmakers over statewide power outages. #txlege #txwx

— Wes Rapaport (@wesrap) February 23, 2021

The resignations come just two days before ERCOT and PUC leaders were expected to testify in front of lawmakers from both chambers of the Texas state legislature during a joint hearing Thursday, according to KXAN.

The board members cited recent concerns about out-of-state leadership at the electric grid after it was reported last week that one-third of ERCOT board members do not live in Texas, according to the Austin-American Statesman.

“To allow state leaders a free hand with future direction and to eliminate distractions, we are resigning from the board effective after our urgent board teleconference meeting adjourns on Wednesday,” they stated in their resignation.

None of the four board members resigning are Texas residents, according to The Texas Tribune. Talberg and Hepper previously worked for electric grid operators in Michigan and New England, respectively. Cramer lives in Germany where he teaches economics at the University of Cologne.

The vacancies will not be immediately filled according to Tuesday’s notice. In order for ERCOT to remain certified under state law, five of the 16 board members must be completely unaffiliated with “any market segment,” according to The Texas Tribune.

The independent grid operator is facing intense scrutiny after statewide power outages during a winter storm last week left millions of Texans without electricity or water. 21 people were reported dead due to unprecedented weather conditions, according to the Austin-American Statesman, and insurers estimate the storm cost more than $18 billion in damages. (RELATED: 8.8 Million Texans Still Without Safe Water Supply)

Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has demanded an investigation into the state’s electric grid and last week’s widespread power outages.

We are ordering an investigation into ERCOT and immediate transparency by ERCOT.

— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) February 16, 2021

ERCOT officials said the grid had been “seconds and minutes” away from a catastrophic failure that could have left Texans without power for months, The Texas Tribune first reported.

“The State of Texas will continue to investigate ERCOT and uncover the full picture of what went wrong, and we will ensure that the disastrous events of last week are never repeated,” Abbott said in a press release Tuesday.

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Tags: statewide power outages during a winter storm an investigation into board members according pic twitter com to resign after texans without ercot board board meeting state leaders the electric greg abbott expected will resign

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Banco do Brasil shares fall due to expectations of the presidents departure

By Tatiana Bautzer

SAO PAULO, Feb 26 (.) – Shares in the state-controlled Banco do Brasil SA fell 4.3% on Friday after Brazilian media reported that Chief Executive André Brandao could resign.

Brazilian newspapers O Estado de S. Paulo, O Globo and Valor Economico reported that Brandao, a former HSBC executive who has been in charge of the bank for five months, would resign after pressure from right-wing president Jair Bolsonaro.

Banco do Brasil and the presidential palace did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

This is the second round of speculation surrounding Brandao. Several Brazilian media reported in January that Bolsonaro had fired him after he launched a plan to close 361 branches.

Bolsonaro replaced the executive president of Petróleo Brasileiro SA last week after disagreements over the fuel price policy of the state oil company. The change made investors nervous.

(Reporting by Tatiana Bautzer; additional reporting by Anthony Boadle in Brasilia; Edited in Spanish by Javier López de Lérida)

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