Exercise centered around national power grid failure underscores dependency of many Americans
November 14, 2013
A drill centered around a national power grid failure caused panic amongst some Iowans who feared they would have their electricity cut off, forcing the City of Ames Electric Services to announce that it is not participating in the exercise.
“Ames Electric Services Director Donald Kom said the city had received calls from worried residents who feared they would lose their electricity, including someone who needs to be on oxygen. But that won’t happen, he said, and the city isn’t even involved in the drill,” reports the Des Moines Register.
City officials later issued a statement which assured residents that, “at no time will our customers experience an outage to their electricity due to this exercise.”
The national drill, which began yesterday and concludes later today, is entitled Grid Ex II and involves numerous officials from the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Iowa’s largest electrical utilities, MidAmerican Energy and Alliant Energy, are also participating in the exercise, as will the New York Power Authority.
The drill is sponsored by the North American Electric Reliability Corp and will also “involve thousands of utility workers, business executives, anti-terrorism experts and government officials from the United States, Canada and Mexico.”
Details about the drill have been kept largely secret, but a press release said the exercise, “Is designed to test how well participating agencies respond to a widespread power loss and challenges stemming from that event .”
Back in August, the New York Times reported that the exercise would involve 5,800 major power plants and 450,000 miles of high-voltage transmission lines and would, “simulate physical attacks and cyberattacks that could take down large sections of the power grid.”
Other states such as Arizona are also planning similar exercises later this month to coincide with Grid Ex II.
The Department of Homeland Security has repeatedly asserted that it’s not a matter of if but when the United States suffers a cyber attack which will take down the national grid.
For many in the ‘prepper’ community, the panic displayed by some Iowans will only underscore how many people are on edge and woefully dependent on a national power grid which is becoming dangerously overloaded.
Aging and stretched to capacity, the national grid will become increasingly susceptible to blackouts according to experts who warn that America will begin to resemble India, which routinely suffers rolling blackouts that can last for weeks.
“I like to think of our grid much like a water system, and basically all of our pipes are at full pressure now,” Otto J. Lynch, vice president of Wisconsin-based Power Line Systems, told the Washington Post. “And if one of our pipes bursts and we have to shut off that line, that just increases the pressure on our remaining pipes until another one bursts, and next thing you know, we’re in a catastrophic run and we have to shut the whole water system down.”
As we have previously documented, one of the primary reasons why the power grid is vulnerable to increasing demand is because the Obama administration and the EPA have aggressively forced coal-fired plants which could provide cheap energy to be mothballed in favor of so-called “green energy,” which is notoriously inefficient.
- Panicked Iowans Fear Losing Power During Blackout Drill (endtimeheadlines.wordpress.com)
- National blackout drill November 13-14, 2013 (racismws.com)
- Two-day North America ‘GridEx II’ emergency power grid drill allegedly seeks to ‘expose security flaws’ (sott.net)
- Purdue Cyber Security Experst Assist In Cyber Attack Drill (indianapublicmedia.org)