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You've heard a lot about ERCOT lately. What exactly is it?

ERCOT doesn't generate the power. Instead it acts like an air traffic controller, moving energy around the state.

So you've heard a lot about The Electric Reliability Council of Texas, or ERCOT, but what exactly is its role?

Think of it like this- ERCOT is similar to an air traffic controller. It makes sure everything is flowing properly.

ERCOT doesn't own the assets. It doesn't make electricity. Instead, it monitors all the moving parts that keep electricity flowing. 

There are a number of participants in ERCOT's market that make electricity work in Texas, and it starts with your home. 

Your home receives electricity from a distribution company. The distribution company receives electricity from the transmission system, which is what ERCOT is managing from its control room.

In a recent update, officials explained 46,000 megawatts of electrical generating capacity was off-line as of Wednesday. Tuesday, the number was 45,000MW. On Monday, it was at 34,000MW.

Gas, coal and nuclear power plants account for 28,000MW of the current amount offline. Wind and solar accounts for 18,000MW.