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When rolling blackouts darkened parts of California this month, Frank Wolak, an economics professor and energy-markets expert at Stanford University, had a painful sense of déjà vu.

Mr. Wolak was among the people who helped California chart a course out of crisis in 2001, when a poorly conceived state electricity-deregulation law resulted in frequent power shortages, sporadic blackouts, astronomical wholesale prices and market manipulation.

As Californians again experience rolling blackouts, and millions more are threatened with losing power, a warning that continues through Monday, Mr. Wolak said it was clear that “California policy makers completely forgot the lessons from the crisis…in their rush to go green.”



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