Commissioners agree EMP threat is real/State Sen. Bob Hall urges Texas electrical grid needs protection
Thank you to Senator Hall and the Kaufman County Commissioners’ Court!
KAUFMAN–State Senator Bob Hall presented a resolution to the Kaufman County Commissioners Monday urging them to support an effort in Texas to secure its electric grid from the threat of electromagnetic pulse (EMP).
Such a pulse can be created from natural causes such as solar flares, solar energetic particles and coronal mass ejections, but also from man-made attacks. The detonation of a small low-yield nuclear warhead at high altitude would produce an EMP, capable of taking out the entire state’s electrical grid.
According to Hall, electricity generators have testified that should such an event occur it would be unable to repair and restore electricity. “Only air and water are more important to sustain life than electrical power,” Hall said. Studies have reported that should the electric grid in the United States go down for 11 months, the result would be the loss of 90 percent of the population, he added.
Happily, there are simple ways to guard against most disruptions caused by an EMP which are not costly. While in the military, Hall said he was charged with designing just such systems to protect or “harden” the electrical power for military installations. They require sophisticated surge protectors, capacitors and SCADA systems.
The installation of such protections adds about 5 percent to the cost of electricity delivery, he said, citing Center Point, Houston as an example.
The resolution recognizes that the Texas grid is contained within the state’s borders and gives the state a unique opportunity of protecting its electric-grid infrastructure from EMP threat; and calls on the governor, Speaker of the House and Legislature to take necessary actions to harden the power grid to protect Texans now and in the future.
Commissioners accepted the resolution unanimously.