Direct Energy, one of the state's many retail electric providers in the deregulated market, has one it calls a first: electricity generated only with Texas natural gas. The True Blue Texas plan sells power from two Direct Energy generators that are fueled with gas from the King Ranch, which covers 825,000 acres in South Texas. It's not the cheapest electricity out there. Direct Energy's listings on the state's Power To Choose electricity comparison shopping website (www.powertochoose.com) offers a 12-month contract at 9.7 cents a kilowatt-hour for a customer using 1,000 kilo-watt hours a month. Other providers have deals for as little as 8 cents for 12-month contracts, but those typically are a mix of fuels, including coal. Direct Energy also has a Texas wind plan for 9.8 cents -- again, not the cheapest on the market, as several others are at 9.0 cents or less.
-- Jim Fuquay