In a press release dated Dec. 2, 2014 the Center for Security Policy reported that the U.S. House of Representatives has unanimously passed H.R. 3410, the Critical Infrastructure Protection Act (CIPA). With headlines declaring that Congress is taking an “Important First Step towards Securing the Grid”, watchful American citizens are finally starting to see some action on protecting the most important critical infrastructure that undergirds our modern way of life.
It’s now up to the President and the Senate to ensure that the House-passed Bill gets enacted into law.
The CIPA legislation requires the Department of Homeland Security to:
- Include in National Planning Scenarios the threat of electromagnetic pulse (EMP) which would entail the education of the owners and operators of critical infrastructure, as well as emergency planners and emergency responders at all levels of government of the threat of EMP events;
- Engage in research and development aimed at mitigating the consequences of naturally occurring or man-caused EMP events; and
- Produce a comprehensive plan to protect and prepare the critical infrastructure of the American homeland against EMP events.
The public was reminded by this news release that there is a privately funded working coalition of national leaders in matters of defense, homeland security, solar weather, infrastructure protection and other experts who have joined forces for the purpose of achieving– a.s.a.p. — the protection of the national power grid upon which all sectors of U.S. society – both civilian and military – depend.
The Secure the Grid Coalition
The Secure the Grid Coalition is sponsored by the Center for Security Policy. (1.) By its advocacy and strong stand in lobbying for Federal mandates to protect the grid against the EMP threat, the Center has partnered with some of the most knowledgeable experts in matters of National Security. Efforts to educate lawmakers and their constituents about the nature of the various threats to the nation’s bulk power distribution system, have helped to get key members of the House to push through this Resolution (HR 3410) with strong bipartisan support.
Influential testimony was provided before the House Homeland Security Committee earlier this year by two members of the Coalition: Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, (2.) of the Congressional Task Force on National and Homeland Security, and Dr. Chris Beck, Vice President of the Electric Infrastructure Protection Council.
Frank Gaffney, president of the Coalition had this to say after the unanimous passage of the Bill:
“Yesterday, the House of Representatives took an important first step towards protecting America’s electrical grid – and millions of its people whose lives critically depend upon it – from attack or naturally induced destruction. That planning will hopefully make clear the necessity of taking steps to secure the grid before these things happen, rather than try to cope with the consequences afterwards”.
Citizen Watch! Protectgrid Opines:
Now for the follow-up. This IS indeed good news for all Americans. Whether the average citizen is informed on this particular topic or not, this Act of Congress should put everybody on notice.
It’s not easy to overstate or over-estimate the importance of this legislation the U.S. Congress has passed. It essentially tasks the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to prioritize not only the EMP threat to our commercial electric grid in its National Planning Scenarios, but also to plan for confronting other hostile asymmetric, cyber-attacks comprising modern electronic and information warfare methods deployed by adversaries to penetrate the defenses of our nation.
Enactment by the U.S. Senate and final signing by the President is obviously vital to actually putting some real teeth into the nation’s united efforts to secure, protect and upgrade the grid.
Let’s keep moving forward…
(1.) http://www.centerforsecurity.org Large portions of this article mirror content and credits are due:
(2.) Dr. Peter Vincent Pry is an indefatigable activist for protecting the grid. He has been a valuable advisor to the Congressional EMP Commission (disbanded 2009) and is now part of the Congressional Task Force on National and Homeland Security and author of Electric Armageddon and Apocalypse Unknown, the primary reference books I have used to assemble background info. on this web site.
Secure the Grid Coalition members are available for comment on the passage of the Critical Infrastructure Protection Act in the House of Representatives and about the considerable work still to be done to harden the electrical grid against all hazards. More information can be found at www.securethegrid.com.