Woolsey and Pry wrote a pretty convincing piece on the necessity of the SHIELD Act for Breitbart Big Peace, and DR recommends our readers read it. Another Carrington Event that would collapse life-sustaining electric grids and critical infrastructures everywhere on Earth is someday inevitable. So, between all those big, nasty foreign meanies out there, and the SUN, the SHIELD Act looks like a national security imperative that Defense Review supports.
Could you do a review on products that claim to protect electronics and vehicles from EMP attack? Graham then went on to become one of the nationa€™s leading experts on the topic, helping advise on both defensive and offensive capabilities. More recently, he has shifted his focus to protecting against what he now sees as the potentially greatest existential threat to the United States: an EMP attack against our civilian infrastructure a€“ particularly the electric power grid. To that end, Graham has served as Chair to both the 2001-4 and 2006-8 Commissions to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse Attack, and was a member of the Department of Defensea€™s Science Board and the National Academies Board on Army Science and Technology.
Graham expressed concern that Iran also has this offensive capability within their arsenal, and perhaps within their current military doctrine as well. The electromagnetic pulse (EMP) generated by a high altitude nuclear explosion is one of a small number of threats that can hold our society at risk of catastrophic consequencesa€¦A single EMP attack may seriously degrade or shut down a large part of the electric power grid in the geographic area of EMP exposure effective instantaneously. In fact, the Commission is deeply concerned that such impacts are likely in the event of an EMP attack unless practical steps are taken to provide protection for critical elements of the electric system and for rapid restoration of electric power, particularly to essential services.
It goes on to note that we have become so efficient, technology-dependent, and highly leveraged that utilities would lack sufficient trained service personnel to address a disaster on this scale. One curious facet of an EMP event is that we wouldna€™t even feel it pass through our bodies.
We would have little idea of the dread potentially awaiting us, because there would be no communications.
The bad news (again) is that the civilian infrastructure is about as soft as it gets, there is nobody in charge of coordinating a hardening of this infrastructure, and government response to date has been tepid or watered down to the point that it is relatively meaningless. And yet, legislation to address the issue never makes it out of committee, regulators come up with weak standards, and nothing really happens.
Unfortunately, that failure of imagination appears to be front and center with respect to protection against EMPs a€“ whether created by the sun or human antagonists. Surprisingly, there is only a relatively small group of people who are highly focused on this issue. Over the past few weeks, I have interviewed Graham, Pry, and a number of other experts, to better understand the issue as well, as the lack of any meaningful or concerted response a€“ from either the national government, the electric industry, and its regulators.
Pry commented that NERC has lobbied against the bill, claiming that it represents over-regulation. Cooper believes that one reason for inaction to date has been because key information on the EMP threat and how to counter it was highly classified during the Cold Wara€”indeed until the EMP Commission was able to get it made public in 2008. There are some things government should be regulating, and the electric power grid is one of them. Cooper notes that Congress has provided a dysfunctional regulatory arrangement that mirrors what it would be like if you could only buy medicine from completely unregulated pharmaceutical companies selling their waresa€”like buying a€?miracle drugsa€? from a traveling salesman in the a€?Old West.a€? There is a well-defined purpose for the Federal Drug Administrationa€”no matter what its performance may be.
Connecting the dots requires only limited imagination, so it clearly stands to reason that the U.S. The Russian military went on high alert and actually brought the nuclear briefcase to then President Boris Yeltsin, while their intercontinental ballistic missiles were placed on high alert to prepare for a nuclear strike. Today, that danger from Russia still exists, but it is not what keeps Pry, Graham, or the EMP threat experts up at night.
Even though the Department of Defense and the intelligence community has known about and dealt with the EMP threat for 50 years, it wasna€™t until about 2008 that many people knew about it. Concerns related to nuclear EMPs have heightened in recent years as a result of the continued activities of states such as Iran and North Korea, as well as various non-state actors such as Al Qaeda. Any casual observer of North Korea will note that the country routinely tests missiles (as they did this month) a€“ often during periods of heightened tensions on the Korean peninsula. Ambassador Cooper observes that the enemy has shifted, and we have not changed our doctrine in response. We assumed that if the Soviets ever attacked us, they would lead with a high altitude attack on the U.S. Mutual Assured Destruction works fine, if both parties understand and play by the same rules. It should be noted that Iran launched last year satellites that could carry a light weight a€?Super-EMPa€? weapon that they may have learned how to build from the Russians via their join programs with North Korea.
And then there is the possibility of a massive geomagnetic storm, far greater than the Hydro-Quebec solar storm of 1989, which was sufficient to cause the HQ grid to collapse within 92 seconds, took out a transformer at a nuclear plant in New Jersey. A geomagnetic storm occurs when a solar wind interacts with the planeta€™s magnetosphere and transfers energy to that magnetosphere.
The famous 1859 Carrington event reportedly created an aurora borealis bright enough so that people in the northeast could read a newspaper at night. Given that high level of uncertainty, what would it take to harden the grid against either a solar or military EMP event? Kappenman comments that this is a result of the tremendous amount of energy these plants process each day.
He notes that thousands of plants would experience the same thing at the same time, and the nukes would have radioactive energy as well. Kappenman looks at this problem as one that has to be responded to immediately in a post-event scenario.
I care about the availability to bring the system back rapidly in a few days at most a€“ if we cana€™t do that, we see the potential for lots of innocent lives being lost, perhaps within the matter of just a few weeks, more than all of the wars this country has fought in its history.
So what would it take, then, to provide a meaningful level of protection to the system?  Kappenman indicates that this depends significantly on how one approaches the issue and what is the target to be hardened. To take the most recent example of the lax approach to just one part of this issue a€“ solar storms a€“ the approach proposed by NERC and approved by FERC requires the utilities to monitor space weather, and have written plans in place to protect against solar storms.
At the same time that we write $645 billion in annual life and health insurance premiums, and $460 billion in policies for property and casualty, we as a society are completely unwilling to protect against one of the potentially greatest natural and man-made threats to our existence. We recommend you to read the free eBook we have to offer on our website, Beyond Collapse. Dreaming of a Green Holiday Season Make It So, Make It So, Make It So Yes, the slugs are fine, thank you! It might be because, if he did, he would be at war with NATO and probably a large portion of the world.
In the end, North Korea was lost and the longest retreat in US military history was at the hands of the Chinese. Barbary War, War of 1812, Mexican American War, Spanish American War, Philippine American war, Panama War. I think they meant a neutron bomb, which uses fusion with the energy of an initial fission reaction. Indeed, no one on the planet has harnessed nuclear fusion in a controlled reaction for much more than a few seconds. If anyone in The West actually had a fully functioning brain, they would nuke those lunatics off the planet, entirely ERASE that religion, same as Africa, where Islam has infected the minds there too, and teach those sand-kissing, pigeon-mooning s-for-brains that they truly are NOTHING but mindless and meaningless fleas on a rat’s ass. If u think destabilizing the world economy will make the world safer then yeah whatever u say. The Sikh would be able to do crap because your primitive Indian technology would be annihilated by the Chinese and so would your primitive culture. Yet they had enough cannon to make the British run, and have them declare Nalwa would rule Asia.
I don’t know much about North Korea, but judging by their poverty and lack of oil, this all sounds very silly to me. The EMP was powerful enough to affect the electric grid in Hawaii, blowing out streetlights, and resulting in telephone outages and radio blackouts. Graham then went on to become one of the nation’s leading experts on the topic, helping advise on both defensive and offensive capabilities.
We needed to protect our ballistic missiles, B1 bombers, and communications systems for command and control.  A decade later I laid out design of how you made an even stronger enhanced EMP weapon. More recently, he has shifted his focus to protecting against what he now sees as the potentially greatest existential threat to the United States: an EMP attack against our civilian infrastructure – particularly the electric power grid. To that end, Graham has served as Chair to both the 2001-4 and 2006-8 Commissions to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse Attack, and was a member of the Department of Defense’s Science Board and the National Academies Board on Army Science and Technology. We have data indicating that the Iranians have launched their versions of Scuds off of the Caspian Sea – not from land, but from the sea – and launched them over land.  And we’ve also seen them launch missiles that have gone up and apparently exploded near their highest altitude – when you put those two ideas together – that is an EMP attack.
Why is this so important?  Because a single missile with a warhead that actually doesn’t have to be all that large, has the potential to take out the U.S.
The electromagnetic pulse (EMP) generated by a high altitude nuclear explosion is one of a small number of threats that can hold our society at risk of catastrophic consequences…A single EMP attack may seriously degrade or shut down a large part of the electric power grid in the geographic area of EMP exposure effective instantaneously.
The International Electrotechnical Commission defines three components associated with a nuclear electromagnetic pulse: E1, E2, and E3.
One curious facet of an EMP event is that we wouldn’t even feel it pass through our bodies.
In fact, no less than two Congressional Commissions (2004 and 2008), a National Academy of Sciences report and other U.S. Unfortunately, that failure of imagination appears to be front and center with respect to protection against EMPs – whether created by the sun or human antagonists. Over the past few weeks, I have interviewed Graham, Pry, and a number of other experts, to better understand the issue as well, as the lack of any meaningful or concerted response – from either the national government, the electric industry, and its regulators. Pry comments that the main entity responsible for electric reliability, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation, and its member utilities, don’t want to spend the money.


If you drive to where the high-voltage AC substations are, you can see how unprotected they are.  Some friends of mine in California deliberately hung around a substation for hours just to see if anybody would ask them what they were doing there and nobody showed up.
Meanwhile, there is nobody specifically in charge of protecting the nation’s electric grid from a national security perspective. We saw just how weak this collaboration was with the recommendations coming out last month from the NERC relating to protection of the power grid against both physical attacks and solar storms.
Cooper believes that one reason for inaction to date has been because key information on the EMP threat and how to counter it was highly classified during the Cold War—indeed until the EMP Commission was able to get it made public in 2008. They certainly have had little effect on an electric industry that is unwilling to submit itself to additional oversight.  In this, Cooper closely echoes Pry. Cooper notes that Congress has provided a dysfunctional regulatory arrangement that mirrors what it would be like if you could only buy medicine from completely unregulated pharmaceutical companies selling their wares—like buying “miracle drugs” from a traveling salesman in the “Old West.” There is a well-defined purpose for the Federal Drug Administration—no matter what its performance may be.
The problem is the way it is set up is the FERC has to ask NERC to draft regulations, standards, and procedures along the lines and areas that the Commission specifies.  But the industry controls NERC.
In June of 2013, Graham, Cooper, and other experts concerned with the EMP threat wrote a highly detailed letter outlining the EMP threat and ways to protect against it. Nuclear EMP played a major role in their strategy against us.  The goal was to paralyze our military systems, as well as civilian critical infrastructure. Why were they worried about one missile?  They thought it was an EMP missile, to take out the general staff and paralyze the forces to enable a surprise attack.  They would expect a single missile from a close location. Even though the Department of Defense and the intelligence community has known about and dealt with the EMP threat for 50 years, it wasn’t until about 2008 that many people knew about it. Any casual observer of North Korea will note that the country routinely tests missiles (as they did this month) – often during periods of heightened tensions on the Korean peninsula. But Iran is not Russia.  And what it takes to deter the Russians might not deter the Ayatollah.
It should be noted that Iran launched last year satellites that could carry a light weight “Super-EMP” weapon that they may have learned how to build from the Russians via their join programs with North Korea. And then there is the possibility of a massive geomagnetic storm, far greater than the Hydro-Quebec solar storm of 1989, which was sufficient to cause the HQ grid to collapse within 92 seconds, took out a transformer at a nuclear plant in New Jersey. A geomagnetic storm occurs when a solar wind interacts with the planet’s magnetosphere and transfers energy to that magnetosphere. One individual who has done a good deal of work in evaluating the preventative technologies and associated costs – with many publications to his name –  is John Kappenman.  Kappenman is a consultant to the Department for Homeland Security, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the DoD concerning the risks and costs of solar storms to the electric grid.
You have to look at the grid holistically and solve the problem holistically.  I think we probably need to do somewhere like 1700 – 2000 large transformers to protect against the EMP magnetic storms…we are talking about something in the neighborhood of around a billion dollars or so. That cost is for an E3 solar disturbance or from an EMP attack as well.  E3 is a physical process. These boilers take 20,000 tons of coal per day, and pulverize it to consistency of talcum powder to inject into the furnace and boiler systems…They have an enormous amount of energy input into the conversion process.  It’s equivalent to exploding one ton of TNT per second…When you get the E1 blast, it could cripple virtually all of the electronic systems that are driving the entire power plant. I care about the availability to bring the system back rapidly in a few days at most – if we can’t do that, we see the potential for lots of innocent lives being lost, perhaps within the matter of just a few weeks, more than all of the wars this country has fought in its history. The problem is that even if the transformers are protected, there is still enormous risk to thermal power plants.  Many of those would likely be out of commission for some time, including the nuclear and coal plants. So what would it take, then, to provide a meaningful level of protection to the system?  Kappenman indicates that this depends significantly on how one approaches the issue and what is the target to be hardened.
With the bigger hardware, such as transformers, it is not necessary to harden every one of them.  The key is to apply systems thinking, look at the entire grid as a whole, and determine where you need redundancy and what critical assets must be protected. To take the most recent example of the lax approach to just one part of this issue – solar storms – the approach proposed by NERC and approved by FERC requires the utilities to monitor space weather, and have written plans in place to protect against solar storms. At the same time that we write $645 billion in annual life and health insurance premiums, and $460 billion in policies for property and casualty, we as a society are completely unwilling to protect against one of the potentially greatest natural and man-made threats to our existence.
William Graham was active in the follow-up to the project, working out of the Air Force weapons lab in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Graham continued to lend his expertise, and became a member of the Presidenta€™s Arms Control Experts Group and Science Advisor to the President.
He is concerned that in the last half century since we first became aware of this issue, our increasing reliance on electronics, and hence our vulnerability, has increased tremendously. There is also the possibility of functional collapse of grids beyond the exposed one, as electrical effects propagate from one region to anothera€¦Should significant parts of the electric power infrastructure be lost for any substantial period of time, the Commission believes that the consequences are likely to be catastrophic, and many people may ultimately die for lack of the basic elements necessary to sustain life in dense urban and suburban communities. The EMP would pass unnoticed through us, even as it fried the iPhones and Galaxies in our pockets, knocked out our telecommunications system, rendered our cars and computers without the ability to function, and took out our power grid.
The military had been working on hardening its capabilities since the Cold War in the 1960s (as have the Russians, Chinese, and other nations).
It is onlyafter a significant harmful event has occurred that we, as a society, raise questions as to why didna€™t we do more to guard against the potential effects. And yet, that hurricane had to hit New York before the city seriously addressed the threat a€“ we could not extrapolate from Katrina and connect the dots.
In both cases, the standards approved by NERC are far below what is necessary, and dona€™t even include power plants. In 2011, Representative Trent Franks (a Republican from Arizona) attempted to address this situation, sponsoring H.R. Bush eraa€”where he worked to assure our ballistic missile defense systems were hardened to EMP effects.
So the public and even many government officials have been unaware of the issuesa€”and most with government clearances havena€™t yet proactively addressed the broader concerns about the viability of our civil critical infrastructure after an EMP attack. We should have some kind of regulatory body to deal with the electric power infrastructure that has grown up helter-skelter over many decades.
The FERC-NERC arrangement is whistling past the graveyard, working on the assumption that nothing ever happens for the first time. The Russians were also hoping it would interfere with emergency action messages to all forces, including ballistic nuke submarines. One of the Soviet Uniona€™s greatest fears was that we had an EMP attack in our military doctrine, and they prepared for it.
A Norwegian meteorological rocket was launched (to study the Aurora Borealis) and the Russians thought it was an incoming missile.
Today, the danger is less likely to emanate from an organized state within the community of nations, and more likely to come from a marginalized nation or a stateless entity a€“ somebody who has less to lose, and against whom it would be harder to strike back. We face an existential threat from somebody who has openly stated the Iranian regime wants to destroy usa€”the a€?Great Satana€? as they say. This results in increased electric current, which can be picked up by power lines essentially acting as antennae. That depends on what and who you are trying to protect against and what kind of post-event capabilities one is trying to achieve. He has modeled the costs to protect against potential massive solar storms, as well as having invented some of the defensive technology. It would only take seconds of energy mismatch between energy input, and you would have a very volatile situation that could explode the plant and not only hurt people but make it unavailable for restoration any time soon. The question a€“ whether in a natural or man-made catastrophe a€“ is what functional pieces are left, and how quickly you can stitch them back together to some functional level.
At a bare minimum, this EMP could theoretically damage electronic equipment south of the Korean DMZ. Wars are about objectives, but I don’t think we can have a nuanced discussion on that. A normal TND uses a heavy lead or uranium casing which absorbs the initial burst of neutrons. It would be like the 1800s almost instantly, except some of the old beater autos before electronics would weather the EMP just fine as long as they have points and a standard 12 volt battery? Korea got those EMP bombs from Russia, I would believe if they got them from China, as to how can they develop their own bombs I will pick China as the first one to help them out. The little faggots from the Sikh Regiment wouldn’t even be able to kill a little Spartan girl. Graham continued to lend his expertise, and became a member of the President’s Arms Control Experts Group and Science Advisor to the President.
There is also the possibility of functional collapse of grids beyond the exposed one, as electrical effects propagate from one region to another…Should significant parts of the electric power infrastructure be lost for any substantial period of time, the Commission believes that the consequences are likely to be catastrophic, and many people may ultimately die for lack of the basic elements necessary to sustain life in dense urban and suburban communities. It is only after a significant harmful event has occurred that we, as a society, raise questions as to why didn’t we do more to guard against the potential effects. And yet, that hurricane had to hit New York before the city seriously addressed the threat – we could not extrapolate from Katrina and connect the dots. Peter Pry, who has written extensively on the topic, most recently publishing the book ELECTRIC ARMAGEDDON: CIVIL-MILITARY PREPAREDNESS FOR AN ELECTROMAGNETIC PULSE CATASTROPHE as head of the Task Force on National And Homeland Security. In both cases, the standards approved by NERC are far below what is necessary, and don’t even include power plants. He notes that in his view, the Edison Electric Institute is no better, characterizing this effort as ‘Obamacare for the electric grid’ and stating that the industry should be left to address this issue.  This tepid approach leaves him rather mystified. Bush era—where he worked to assure our ballistic missile defense systems were hardened to EMP effects. So the public and even many government officials have been unaware of the issues—and most with government clearances haven’t yet proactively addressed the broader concerns about the viability of our civil critical infrastructure after an EMP attack. It’s as if you were in the pharmaceutical industry and the industry decided what pharmaceuticals to approve…  What this arrangement does is it allows NERC – which is just another vehicle of the electric power industry – to retain the rewards of having a regulated utility while at the same time handing the risk off to the taxpayer…If you can privatize the rewards and socialize the risks, you can’t get a better deal than that. One of the Soviet Union’s greatest fears was that we had an EMP attack in our military doctrine, and they prepared for it. Today, the danger is less likely to emanate from an organized state within the community of nations, and more likely to come from a marginalized nation or a stateless entity – somebody who has less to lose, and against whom it would be harder to strike back.
We face an existential threat from somebody who has openly stated the Iranian regime wants to destroy us—the “Great Satan” as they say.


Just two years ago, a solar superstorm erupted that was likely similar to or greater in magnitude than the Carrington event. Even at that big a number, it still equates less to a dollar per year per power bill.  Compare that to the existing investment in the power grid infrastructure, which is more than a trillion dollars, perhaps several trillion. The question – whether in a natural or man-made catastrophe – is what functional pieces are left, and how quickly you can stitch them back together to some functional level. If we can't protect our electric grid infrastructure, including communications, transportation, banking and finance, food and water, then what's the point?
Dubbed Operation Starfish, this exercise was part of a larger project to evaluate the impacts of nuclear explosions in space. All found that the EMP threat poses a significant and existential threat to the United States. NERC is relatively toothless, made up of its member utilities a€“ whose chief responsibilities are to their shareholders and ratepayers, not to safeguard national security. There is simply no holistic view being applied, and no serious response to the potential severity of the threat.
668, the Secure High-voltage Infrastructure for Electricity from Lethal Damage (SHIELD) Act. The FERC has directed the NERC to develop plans against an electromagnetic storm, and even in this area, the result has been astonishingly lackluster.
If pharmacies did that for drugs, people wouldna€™t stand for it, but this is more complex so people dona€™t understand it. It was my specialtya€¦to educate policymakers and military leaders about EMP and what the bad guys were planning to do with it. In 2008, the contents of the updated report on critical national infrastructures was released as a result of a deliberate decision to inform the public and declassify enough to raise awareness that there was a threat to the unhardened infrastructure.
All they need is a nuclear weapon to go on one of their existing ballistic missiles used to launch satellites. Kappenman observes that you have to apply systems thinking to a highly interconnected power grid. At higher power levels, a real EMP device can melt any electronic device or system within hundreds of miles.
This allows the gamma rays to spread out before they hit the atmosphere, creating a huge area of effect.
Only that just saying it would be war against NATO and a large portion of the world is not the end of discussion. If a state has open carry and every man does not, versus another place where they do you can predict the outcome. Militarily America could win any war with great ease, but that is not in the interests of bankers or corporations. A neutron bomb uses a thinner casing which allows the neutrons to escape which takes the form of neutron radiation which zaps any human within a given radius depending upon the power of a given bomb, with like 8000 rads of radiation which would immediately incapacitate anyone caught in the burst and cause 100% mortality within 2 days. Taliban’s main fight was to oust the warlord system that supported, post-soviet regime.
I mean a country that is isolated from trade from the rest of the countries, where do they get their materials from? The E2 element is intermediate in duration, lasting from a microsecond to a second after the initiation of the EMP, and is similar in its effects to lightning.  As such, the grid is generally shielded against E2. Graham, they also happen to be the ones who were most involved in developing our own EMP weaponry capabilities or countermeasures during the Cold War, so they know better than most how devastating these weapons can be.  And they are extremely frustrated with the utter lack of meaningful action in Washington to address this issue. NERC is relatively toothless, made up of its member utilities – whose chief responsibilities are to their shareholders and ratepayers, not to safeguard national security. If pharmacies did that for drugs, people wouldn’t stand for it, but this is more complex so people don’t understand it. It was my specialty…to educate policymakers and military leaders about EMP and what the bad guys were planning to do with it. The challenge has to do with the fact that our electronics are ubiquitous, making a complete retrofit effort time-consuming and costly.  The best way to approach it would be piecemeal, focusing on the critical areas first and replacing other items as they age and require updating. We also need a rudimentary voice communication system that has been thought out and hardened as well.  As the SCADA and controls systems get replaced in routine maintenance, you could bring in new and hardened inexpensive components for the next generation.
We don’t have the leadership in Washington. We have a serious mis-match between a for-profit industry and a national security issue. Peter Vincent Pry's assessment that Congress pass the SHIELD Act, which would, according to them, keep the above scenario from happening to us, or, more specifically, being done to us. The Sun can hit us with powerful EMP pulses, as well, that can cause dangerous geomagnetic storms, including something really scary called a geomagnetic superstorm. The missile, launched fromJohnson Island, 900 miles from Hawaii, was armed with a 1.4 megaton warhead, programmed to explode at 240 miles above the earth.
Just because a storm hit New Orleans and caused tremendous damage, why should New York worry? Pry is an expert in the space, has served on numerous congressional advisory groups concerning national security issues. This legislation would have directed the FERC to enable emergency measures to protect the power grid via directive of the President. The grid is not enormously robust to begin with, and all thata€™s absent is some dedicated adversary with the desire and competence to take it down. Pry noted that this preparation and mindset almost proved our undoing, because the Russians took this threat very seriously, even after the Cold War was over. We established a tripwire in Europe so the Soviets wouldna€™t attack them or us in the first place.
Daniel Baker of the University of Colorado was quoted as saying that had the event occurred a week earlier, the earth would have been hit. And while all of the attention (such as it is) has been paid to security of the power lines a€“ which would indeed act to magnify the strength of the EMP, power plants are extremely vulnerable and cannot be ignored. And we dona€™t have the political will to address this issue with the resources and gravity it deserves. Now toddle off into the hills and fight your Maoist guerillas that you’ve never managed to clean up.
There is still a blast with thermal and overpressure effects including destruction of infrastructure but not to the degree which a normal TND would inflict since part of the energy release is in the neutron radiation rather than solely blast effects. Nothing has 100% good intentions, and no one was the right thing always for the right reason. The missile, launched from Johnson Island, 900 miles from Hawaii, was armed with a 1.4 megaton warhead, programmed to explode at 240 miles above the earth. By contrast, the E3 pulse is much slower, a result of the nuclear explosion affecting the earth’s magnetic field, and is very similar to the effects of an intense solar storm.  The E3 effect of a nuclear blast or severe solar storm would be to create massive currents on power lines, which could then destroy electrical transformers and potentially impact power plants as well. The grid is not enormously robust to begin with, and all that’s absent is some dedicated adversary with the desire and competence to take it down. We established a tripwire in Europe so the Soviets wouldn’t attack them or us in the first place.
And while all of the attention (such as it is) has been paid to security of the power lines – which would indeed act to magnify the strength of the EMP, power plants are extremely vulnerable and cannot be ignored. And we don’t have the political will to address this issue with the resources and gravity it deserves.
One of these, called the Carrington Event, occured in 1859, and it was anything but pleasant. He also connected me with some of the other major thinkers who have been advocating for a more proactive U.S response.
Importantly, it also laid out the cost recovery methodologies (the private sector needs to get paid for the measures it implements). China is exponentially most powerful than it was during the Korean War and it has accumulated much.
If a big EMP was detonated above the USA, the E1 burst would probably melt most of the electronics within 1,000 miles or so. They will never risk China’s gains for North Korea because their path cannot be repeated. What was not entirely expected was the magnitude of the resulting electromagnetic pulse (EMP).
The Act also would have ordered the FERC to develop and submit reliability standards for the electric grid with respect to geomagnetic storms or EMPs.  Finally, it would have directed the DoE to create a program to develop expertise in safeguarding the bulk power system and to share this expertise with the owners, operators and users.
Since then, though, as far as we know, there have been no further testing of nuclear EMPs by either the US or Russia. That is just one example among many of what China did to grow today and how they cannot do it a second time.
The E1 induces very high voltages in just about everything, causing wires to melt, fuses to blow, and insulators to break down and become conductors. E3 is hard to protect against, but its effects are generally only felt by larger electrical installations, such as power lines.
With modern tooling and technologies, creating an EMP weapon isn’t particularly hard.



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