Excerpt from - Smart Grids may make U.S. more vulnerable to electromagnetic pulses from solar flares or a terrorist attack
Written by Jim Pierobon on August 15, 2011
While the U.S. Congress, President Obama and the Tea Party wrangle over debt ceilings and deficit spending, a far more potent threat looms as a growing number of intelligence experts warn of how a massive solar flare or a nuclear missile detonated above the United States could kill wipe out the power grid…
Hundreds of millions of people would die if they could not find some way to survive in an agrarian, 1800-style, existence….
As for efforts to develop and deploy a “Smart Grid” by utilities in the U.S.: “Nothing could be stupider” than to build a Smart Grid that isn’t smart enough to deal with this problem, Gaffney implored.
Although a major solar flare, aka a “Carrington event” (named for the British scientist who recognized in 1859 the destructive potential of a a solar flare), could occur at any time, the scientific probability of its occurrence, known as a”Solar Maximum,” grows closer. That ‘window’ opens December 2012 and carries on through the end of 2013 when the sun’s magnetic field lines are the most distorted due to the magnetic field on the solar equator rotating at a slightly faster pace than at the solar poles.
A repeat of it in modern times would be a “space weather Katrina,” according to the Academy of Sciences report. It estimates a severe solar storm could cause $1 trillion to $2 trillion in losses the first year, and take four to 10 years to fully recover from…
One very practical states and utilities could take quickly is to protect the 300+ electric transformers scattered throughout the U.S. Thick metal sheds are widely viewed to provide a robust shield against an EMP, no matter the source. In addition, they could be equipped with “surge arrestors” which have the double benefit of helping guard against a cyber attack, according to Pry.