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Oklahoma’s Republican Attorney General Gentner Drummond has filed lawsuits against two Texas-based natural gas companies, ET Gathering & Processing and Symmetry Energy Solutions, over their alleged role in driving up gas prices during Winter Storm Uri in 2021. These lawsuits are the first of their kind in the state and accuse the companies of using tactics to reduce natural gas supplies and increase prices during the catastrophic storm, which left millions without power across the country. Drummond stated that he believes the level of fraud perpetrated on Oklahomans during Winter Storm Uri is both staggering and unconscionable, with some bad actors reaping billions of dollars in ill-gotten gains.

The lawsuits were filed in Osage County, Oklahoma, and seek to hold Enable andSymmetry accountable for their actions during the storm. Messages seeking comment from the companies were not immediately returned. This legal action comes after Kansas Attorney General Kris Kobach filed a similar lawsuit against a natural gas marketer in that state in December. In Texas, which was also severely impacted by Winter Storm Uri, electric utility Griddy Energy reached a settlement with state regulators over the crushing electric bills its customers received during the deadly winter storm.

These lawsuits highlight the significant financial impact that Winter Storm Uri had on consumers and the alleged misconduct of certain companies in profiting from the crisis. Drummond’s actions reflect a desire to hold companies accountable for their actions during the storm and ensure that consumers are not exploited during times of crisis. By taking legal action against natural gas companies accused of manipulating prices during the storm, Oklahoma is seeking justice for its residents who suffered in the aftermath of Winter Storm Uri.

The lawsuits against Enable and Symmetry underscore the importance of regulatory oversight in the energy sector to prevent price manipulation and protect consumers. The allegations against these companies suggest that they took advantage of the crisis to maximize their profits at the expense of consumers. By holding these companies accountable for their actions, Oklahoma’s Attorney General is sending a message that such behavior will not be tolerated and that companies must act ethically and responsibly, especially during times of crisis.

The legal actions taken by Oklahoma and Kansas in response to Winter Storm Uri demonstrate a commitment to safeguarding consumers from price gouging and other unfair practices in the energy market. By pursuing lawsuits against companies accused of profiting from the crisis, state officials are working to ensure that similar misconduct does not occur in the future. These legal actions serve as a warning to companies that seek to exploit natural disasters for financial gain and reinforce the importance of ethical business practices in the energy industry. Ultimately, the lawsuits filed by Attorney General Drummond and his counterparts aim to protect consumers and hold companies accountable for their actions during times of crisis.

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