We’ve covered the frightening news before:
A “military-style” attack on a California power station was first thought to be vandalism, but then escalated to an FBI-involved investigation.
“These were not amateurs taking potshots. My personal view is that this was a dress rehearsal,” said Mark Johnson, a former PG&E executive, at a press conference on grid security.
The director of the National Security Agency has acknowledged that China is capable of using a cyber attack to shut down our power grid. One power company claimed that it defends itself against 10,000 attempted cyber attacks a month.
But when discussing electromagnetic pulse attacks and the insecurity of our power grid, there are groups that have organized seeking to thwart such scenarios.
“There are solutions to this problem, and they are relatively inexpensive, but right now we lack the political leadership to get it done,” said Scott Cooper, executive director of High Frontier which spearheads the grassroots efforts to tackle these problems.
“We believe it’s going to take a grassroots effort to put pressure on our leaders to fix this problem,” he explained.
The detonation of a ballistic missile a few hundred miles over our atmosphere could wipe out our entire infrastructure, sending the country back to the 1800s.
“We know our good friends over in Iran right now are working diligently to acquire such a weapon, and they have a stated purpose of trying to destroy us,” said Cooper. “They should put all of us on alert that we need to protect ourselves so that cannot happen.”
Cooper explained that cost and regulation were hindering solutions.
Cost, he explained, could be broken down to a per subscriber level, or each subscriber would pay about 25 to 50 cents per year for 10 years. When it’s broken down like that the cost appears nominal.
“What’s preventing it honestly is the fear of additional regulation,” he added. The group is for limited government, but every rule has its exception.
“But this isn’t regulation for regulation’s sake. It’s regulation to protect the American citizenry, and it needs to be passed.”
Legislation to help the government strengthen our power grid’s security has never made it out of committee.
In the meantime, Cooper encourages citizens to get involved and to live wisely.
“When we were living under the fear of mutually assured destruction, the concept of civil defense was talked about regularly. It wasn’t a ‘prepper’ or a kind of extreme group. Folks did it because they were trained to do it,” said Cooper about the “Prepper” movement.
Cooper favors things like victory gardens and making strategic partnerships with farmers.
“I think we need to think strategically about that again. It’s about living wisely,” he added.
To listen to Joshua Cook’s entire interview with Scott Cooper below.