Reliant Energy

Reliant Energy, headquartered in Houston, TX, provides electricity and energy services to retail and wholesale customers in the U.S. 

In April 2004, the U.S. Department of Justice obtained an indictment of Reliant for price-gouging California consumers during the energy crisis in 2000-2001; the company is accused of shutting down power plants, causing widespread power "blackouts" that increased energy prices and Reliant's profits.  Click here to read the indictment.

In addition to the criminal indictment, Reliant has agreed to pay $125 million thus far to government regulators to settle allegations that the company manipulated energy markets.

On May 19, Reliant received a contract to provide electricity to several military installations, despite being under federal indictment.  Public Citizen has repeatedly urged the government to investigate why Reliant continues to receive lucrative contracts even while under indictment. 

Want to learn more about Reliant?  Read our Got Juice? report from 2001, when Public Citizen first uncovered what Reliant was doing to California consumers.  If you can stomach it, read transcripts of conversations by Reliant Energy traders, detailing their role in manipulating California consumers!

Reliant is still in business today.  And Public Citizen is still watchdogging them.  To read our press releases and letters, please go to:

June 8, 2005: Reliant Joins New Lobbying Group to Push Deregulation

Feb. 5, 2003: Federal Regulators Let Corporate Criminals Go Free; Reliant Energy Slapped on Wrist for Manipulating California Market; Transcripts Reveal Traders Thought Causing Blackouts Was "Coolest Strategy Ever"

May 26, 2004: Public Citizen Calls for Debarment of Reliant Energy from Federal Contracts Due to Company’s Indictment for Role in California Energy Crisis

June 2, 2004: Public Citizen Calls on Baltimore City Officials to Reevaluate Contract with Reliant Energy, Indicted for Its Role in the California Energy Crisis

June 8, 2004: Public Citizen Urges Maryland Officials to Revoke Electricity Contract With Reliant Due to Company’s Role in California Energy Crisis

June 29, 2004: Public Citizen Urges Government to Revoke Electricity Contract With Reliant Energy

July 6, 2004: Government Knew of Indictment But Awarded Contract Anyway

July 16, 2004Baltimore Officials Claim Criminal Indictment Not Grounds to Disqualify $67.3 Million Reliant Energy Contract

July 28, 2004Public Citizen Urges Maryland to Strengthen Its Licensing Process for Power Providers

August 9, 2004Maryland's Public Service Commission directs Reliant to respond to Public Citizen's allegations

August 19, 2004: Reliant's answer to Maryland's Public Service Commission responding to Public Citizen's allegations

August 24, 2004Public Citizen responds to Reliant's answer to allegations