The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) assessed the vulnerability of the large power transformers of the U.S. power grid and identified the vulnerability of the transformers as a major national security concern.
President Obama acknowledged the existential threat our vulnerable power grid poses to our civilization on October 13, 2016, by signing an Executive Order to prepare the Nation for space weather events. This is significant to me because I finished the first draft of my thriller Patriarch Run, which highlights the vulnerability of the grid in realistic and accurate detail, in 2010. At that time, people simply weren't taking the threat to the grid seriously. They are now!
The societal catastrophe that would result if the grid went down was once dismissed by many as a concern of conspiracy theorists. Those days are ending as a growing number of authoritative sources have acknowledged the threat in an official capacity.
This BBC Documentary suggests that the Blaster worm caused the largest blackout in North American history: 50 million people without power, $6 billion in damage. The documentary also makes the case that it would be easy to shut down the entire gird with a cyber attack.
"The lifetime probability of a severe solar storm is about 1 in 2 and the chance of resulting catastrophe is substantial, perhaps near 100 percent."
I want to introduce you to one of the most authoritative sources on the vulnerability of our critical infrastructure, Blackout Wars.
The Carrington Event is the harbinger usually referenced when the threat of space weather is addressed. So I thought it'd be helpful to write a post explaining just what it was.
One of the scary things I learned in writing my thriller Patriarch Run is that our civilization has unwittingly evolved to become absolutely dependent on the power grid. It's not an exaggeration to say that if the grid went down today and didn't come back up again, most of us would die.