(FB 1548129337 Timestamp)
WHEN THE OPPOSITION DOES YOUR PLANNING FOR YOU
—“The NIAC was challenged to think beyond even our most severe power disruptions, imagining an outage that stretches beyond days and weeks to months or years, and affects large swaths of the country.
Unlike severe weather disasters, a catastrophic power outage may occur with little or no notice and result from myriad types of scenarios: for example, a sophisticated cyber physical attack resulting in severe physical infrastructure damage; attacks timed to follow and exacerbate a major natural disaster; a large-scale wildfire, earthquake, or geomagnetic event; or a series of attacks or events over a short period of time that compound to create significant physical damage to our nationâs infrastructure.
An event of this severity may also be an act of war, requiring a simultaneous military response that further draws upon limited resources.
For the purpose of this study, the NIAC focused not on the cause, but rather on the consequences, which are best categorized as severe, widespread, and long-lasting.
The type of event contemplated will include not only an extended loss of power, but also a cascading loss of other critical servicesâdrinking water and wastewater, communications, financial services, transportation, fuel, healthcare, and othersâwhich may slow recovery and impede re-energizing the grid.
Most importantly, the scale of the eventâstretching across states and regions, affecting tens of millions of peopleâwould exceed and exhaust mutual aid resources and capabilities. The ability to share public and private resources across businesses and jurisdictions underpins our nationâs emergency response plans and strategies today. (See Appendix C for a more detailed definition of a catastrophic outage).
This profound threat requires a new national focus. The NIAC found that our existing plans, response resources, and coordination strategies would be outmatched by an event of this severity.”—