Synopsis: Leading experts say the U.S. power grid is vulnerable to catastrophic failure due to an EMP blast, massive solar flare, cyberattack or physical terrorist attack. There have been books written and even a 208 page report by a congressional commission. It does not paint a pretty picture. Americans must be prepared because the U.S. government obviously isn’t.

THE VULNERABILITY OF THE U.S.POWER GRID
AND ITS POTENTIAL CATASTROPHIC DOWNFALL

People enjoy the connectivity the computer age has ushered in. Computerized networks, the Internet, cell phones, tablets and more have collectively brought us all closer together and made us happier, healthier and safer. At least, that is how to story goes. While there is certainly a sense of efficiency, there are inherit dangers which parallel this increase in connectivity. One such danger concerns our nation’s electrical grid. We have become vulnerable to numerous potential scenarios, some of which are considered likely to happen by experts in the field. Is America prepared? In a word…no!

Overconnectivity & the Potential for Disaster

Our modern system of inter-connectivity has set America up for a potentially huge fall. Businesses, government agencies and infrastructure systems function through a computerized web of intranet and internet networks. These systems have become targets of insatiable desire by skilled hackers. Cyberattacks even against huge, secure institutions have become commonplace. In some instances exploiting a single weakness can have a cascading effect.

A little over a decade ago my children became interested a reboot of the old Battlestar Galactica television series. I admit being drawn into the pilot episode where the Cylons (artificially-intelligent robots) managed to take down networked planetary defenses on twelve planets unleashing a nuclear annihilation killing billions of people. Even the fleet of space-based warships fell victim to the cyberattacks, save one…the Battlestar Galactica. The Galactica’s commander, William Adama was old school and did not believe in having all systems networked together. His “air gap” philosophy saved this solitary warship from destruction.

The story is science-fiction but it highlights the over-dependence we have on technology and the over-connectivity which ties it all together. You do not have to be a Luddite to believe that we have become too dependent on technology and have lost, or are quickly losing, the ability to function in society without it. In other words, ye olde skills are being lost through lack of use. Couple that with the massive inter-connectivity and we have set ourselves up for potential disaster if our security cannot constantly and perfectly outwit the hackers. Experience has proven it can’t. The more money we spend on securing our servers and devices, the more challenged the hackers feel to defeat the protocols. For every smart geek on defense, there is always a smarter one on offense.

In this article we will explore the very real threat the electrical grid faces due to its connectivity. There have been many lectures delivered, books written, and even a congressional report stating we are highly vulnerable to cyberattacks and physical terrorists attacks, massive solar flares, or an EMP blast. They propose it is not a matter of if, but when, one of these scenarios brings the grid down. Keep in mind, these are not the rants and ravings of conspiracy nuts. Even the well-respected investigative journalist, Ted Koppel, recently published a book titled, Lights Out.

Let’s begin by examining how we have set ourselves up for potential disaster, how it is likely to happen, and what the aftermath will be.

JIT Production & Empty Shelves

It has been repeatedly stated that “America is roughly nine missed meals away from chaos.” Most Americans make a trip to the supermarket once or twice a week, some more often. I know of young people who eat out every single day and have little, or no food, in their cupboards. In an emergency event, people will desperately head to the grocery store en masse to find there is but a limited amount of food, water and supplies to go around.

In a best-case scenario, re-supplying will be slow and sporadic. In the event of widespread crises such as power grid failure or large scale terrorist attack, it may not come at all. The prudent who have put trust in Murphy will eat. The careless and indifferent who put trust in the certainty and integrity of the food supply system will starve.

The problem
There was a time when manufacturers produced goods, stored them in huge warehouses, and distributed them out as orders arrived. This resulted in the need to store large amounts inventory. As computer hardware and software became smarter and more interconnected, a system called Just in Time (JIT) evolved.

On the one hand, JIT production is a system of supplying goods as close as possible to when they are actually needed for distribution. On the other hand, it means the manufacturer receives raw materials and parts just before the manufacturing process. This results in large inventory management savings, not to mention the fact that the asset section of the Balance Sheet looks better with cash, rather than inventory.

For retailers, such as Wal-Mart, Target and your major grocery chains, this means products arrive and go straight out to local stores where they immediately hit the shelves. No loitering of pallets is allowed.

JIT is a precision system that monitors demand and adjusts to meet it. It relies heavily on seasonal and other statistics. Though it has proven to be a lean, uber-efficient business model, it has little built-in slack for unforeseen circumstances. In the event of a large-scale crisis where production may be hindered or halted, there will be little or no stock reserves.

There are many examples of localized disaster that affected national, or even global economies. In 2011, flooding near Bangkok immediately took ¼ of the entire world’s hard drive production offline. The shortages slowed computer production and drove hard drive prices up 150% within two months.

When Hurricane Katrina struck my area in 2005 it knocked out the power grid, leaving no electricity to power the pumps that move a huge part of the nation’s oil through Coastal pipelines. This created a fuel shortage and resulted in an immediate spike in oil prices felt nationwide.

It is a wonder to behold the panic during our local hurricane season when even a minor tropical storm or depression enters the Gulf of Mexico. Nevermind Mississippi has only 62 of the 3,423 miles of coastline, the shelves empty fast. You snooze, you lose.

In the event of a very large regional or national emergency, there is little or stock reserves in the warehouses to refill the empty shelves. It goes downhill from there. If there is no electricity, there is no new production. There will be no fuel which means no trucking…even if there was some form of production. We can get a good glimpse by studying the tremendous problems Japan faced after their recent devastating earthquake and tsunami. The Japanese invented JIT and it came back to bite them in the tail.

While some say “America survived the depression, we can survive anything,” they need to remember this is a different country. We are no longer an agrarian nation. Our workers, generally speaking, no longer possess manual skills. We are a totally dependent on this high-tech computerized network of business and government. We have no redundancies in place. It is high time we take a look at our misplaced faith.

Misplaced Faith

The English word “faith “ has been greatly watered down over time. It is used repeatedly in reference to “faith in the government,” “faith in paper money,” “faith in the system,” and such things. What it really refers to, in these instances, is a trust that is ignorant or indifferent. Ignorant as in “I trust, but I don’t really know why” and indifferent as in “I trust, but I don’t care why.” The bottom line is there exists a confidence or reliance, not matter where it came from.

This sort of “faith” is an amazing thing. People, by the thousands, drive over huge bridges every single day, most without the least bit of fear. Why? Because they have done it so many times, they no longer think about it. Sure, the first time you drove over the Mississippi River bridge in New Orleans was probably a bit on the scary side. But, if you commuted from the West Bank to downtown everyday, other things would occupy your mind. Bridges are known to have collapsed, and lots of people have been killed. I’m even familiar with a bridge collapse in Mississippi where people I know lost their lives. But repetition and habit quells fear and worry.

Faith in paper money
People have “faith” in paper money. Even though it’s just fancy colored paper, as long as they can take two Washington prints and buy a loaf of bread, they are satisfied. Once U.S. paper currency was issued as “Silver Certificates,” and they were redeemable in the precious metal. That ended in 1957. Now it’s just paper. Contrary to a popular belief, it is not backed by the Gold Reserves in Fort Knox. In fact it is not even issued by the U.S. Government, but rather the Federal Reserve Bank…which is neither federal nor has any reserves. It is not an agency of the federal government but rather a private corporation, and a terrible blight on our entire economic system (more on that in another article). Most “money” in the United States is not even paper. It is mainly zeros and ones, binary digits in a national banking system which merely transfers funds electronically through the ACH system (Automated Clearing House).

Faith in the Banking System
This leads us to a “faith” in the banking system itself. Most people believe the money they deposit is there resting in the bank. When they need to withdraw it, they can simply fill out a withdrawal form and get their cash. This only works on a very small scale thanks to fractional reserve banking. When you open a bank account and deposit money, the funds are no longer your property, they are the property of the bank. In exchange you receive an asset called a checking or savings account which results in an accompanying liability for the bank. However, the bank is free to use “their” cash for loans or investments while holding a small reserve of currency. These reserves represent a small fraction of the deposit liabilities.

While people have tremendous “faith” in the banking system, the cash does not exist to “pay out” all the customers should there be a run on the bank. The early bird catches the worm in a mild scenario. If the grid fails, computers are down and no one’s balance is available.

Faith in Government Disaster Response
In 2005, I well remember the response of the masses in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. “Oh, the government will come help us.” “FEMA will be here soon with food and water.” “The president won’t let us down.”

In my area, it was six days before anyone saw FEMA and only then because they showed up to confiscate our relief trucks from friends in Florida (read the story here). Even on a small regional scale, the feds were unable to mount a respectable response. There was chaos and looting in the urban areas and even our rural area had it’s problems. People get crazy when they’re hungry and if it were not for several armed guards watching over our relief supplies, there would have been trouble. It was difficult enough as it was. All this touchy-feely BS about the “goodness of men coming together” was written by people in ivory towers who have no contact with the real world.

A 2013 National Geographic survey is quite revealing. 9 in 10 people polled said they believe the world will experience a major catastrophe, and of those, about one-third expect it to occur “less than a year from now.” In case of such a catastrophe, 57 percent of those surveyed said they would turn to friends and family for help, while 14 percent said they believed the government would be “the most help.” While experience has taught the public not to put their trust in the government, it hasn’t replaced it with a viable alternative.

If 9 in 10 say they are expecting a major catastrophe, why aren’t they making personal preparations for it? Why are three-fourths of those surveyed relying on external help, either family, friends or feds? What if your family and friends are in the same boat as you? You are relying on them and they are relying on you, yet neither is prepared.

I am going to discuss several scenarios which have various degrees of probability, but all require a measure of preparation. We are all faced with the threat of natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, wildfires, and such. There is an increasing threat of pandemics, as bacteria continues its antibiotic-resistant mutations.

The world is politically unstable, and America has made many enemies. The threat of terrorist attacks is increasingly becoming a matter of when, not if. These attacks could range anywhere from dirty-bomb and EMP detonations, to chemical and biological weapons, or to cyberattacks upon our digital infrastrucure.

Following decades of fiscal mismanagement, our financial system is on the verge of total collapse. Cracks in the pillars are very visible now, and our foreign investors are no longer anxious to continue shoring up the lintels. Our national debt can never be repaid. Our trade deficit forbids us getting a hand up. The U.S. Dollar is no longer the world currency. The list goes on and on.

Of particular concern is the risk of power grid breakdown due to cascading failure. The inter-connectivity of the American power grid in America is exposed to a number of potentially devastating possibilities. A government commission issued a report that a detonated EMP blast was not just possible, but likely. An enormous solar flare can cause similar effects as an EMP blast. And, as we have pointed out, the computerized nature of the grid leaves it vulnerable to cyberattacks by hackers.

Lights Out

Speaking of “faith,” people have trust in America’s vast network of electrical systems. Electricity is invisible. It’s like the air we breathe. We take it for granted. You never even think about it until it’s not there. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina I was without electricity for several weeks. Without fail, I still reached to flip the light switch every time I walked into a dark room. I felt stupid, but it illustrated how much faith we all have in the “invisible energy.”

I have a rural power connection which expectantly goes down a couple times a year during lightning storms. The odd thing is the random “brownouts” which occur at least a half dozen times a year for unknown reasons. Of course, it never fails to happen when I’m working intensely on an article which hasn’t been saved in half an hour. It is upsetting but if you think about it, the six-ten seconds of brownout occurs up against the total 31,536,000 seconds of the year. When you put it in perspective, these power companies really do a good job of providing a seamless source of power. Of course, the interconnection helps by sending generated power where it is needed at any point in time.

Modern America has become totally dependent upon electricity. Without it, society will breakdown fast. Fuel reserves cannot be pumped. Without fuel, there is no truck transportation. Without the transports, there are no resupplies, which due to JIT is negligible anyway. Water distribution comes to a halt the moment the gravity systems are exhausted. Sewage treatment plants no longer function resulting in raw sewage back up with nowhere to go. Hospitals will cease to function once the generators run out of fuel. There will be no resupply of medicine. Communications will be down. Chaos will ensue and there will be house to house looting. People will begin to die…lots of them…some from hunger and thirst, some from disease, others from lead.

Power Distribution Grid
I believe it is helpful to have a basic understanding of the power grid system. The grid of the contiguous 48 states is divided into two main interconnected parts covering states east of the Rocky Mountains and states west. Much of Texas forms a smaller third interconnected grid (see diagram below).

U.S. Power Grid

There are over 7,300 power plants in the United States1 transmitting electricity across 450,000 miles of high-voltage power lines and 160,000 miles of overhead transmission lines2 before reaching your local substation.

Electricity is produced as it is used. It is not practical to store large amounts of it. All of the grid is tightly interconnected in an efficient system that sends power where it is needed. Supply and demand must be kept in a perfect balance. We rely on computerized system to make that happen.

Electrical System

From Power Plant to your Home
Three-phase power exits the power generators at the power plant and immediately enters a transmission substation where large transformers steps up the voltage to an extremely high range of 138,000 to over 500,000 for long distance transmission. This is necessary to minimize the lost energy due to resistance.

The transmission lines carry the power to substations where transformers step the voltage down to “distribution levels” of less than 10,000 volts. The substation also has a “bus” which splits the power off in multiple directions in local distribution lines. It also acts as a switching station being able to disconnect specific distribution lines from the grid, when necessary. The bus also has smaller transformers that set down the different voltage needs of the separate distribution lines.

Along the distribution line there are regulator banks that work to maintain a steady 7,200 volts running through the “neighborhood.” Finally, the electricity flows to your home via a final step-down transformer drum, usually a hanging on a utility pole next to your house. The 7,200 volts is reduced to a two-phase 240 volts.3

Cascading failures
When one piece of the system fails, the load transfers to the next piece. If it cannot handle the increased load, it will also fail. Just like a circuit breaker tripping in your home electrical panel, components of a power grid will shut off when the load is too high. A domino effect ensues as the power tsunami quickly floods everything in its path leaving darkness in its wake.

Twenty years ago there was a huge blackout in the western United States and Canada caused by major transmission line wires sagging into some trees thereby shorted out. When that particular line failed, the entire load shifted to neighboring transmission lines. Once those overloaded and failed, the cascade continued over a huge area.

The Blackout of 2003
In August 2003, a widespread power outage occurred over an eight state area affecting 45 million people including 14.3 million in the New York City metropolitan area. 11 million Canadians in the Ontario were also affected. Many customers were without power for over two days. It all started with human error, then equipment failure, then transmission lines heavy laden with re-routed voltage drooped and came in contact with trees in three different places, then game on. Within a couple of hours, 256 power plants were offline. What started in Ohio swiftly moved across several states.

Blackout of 2003

No electricity meant no communication and contaminated water supplies. Public transportation came to a halt and no one could refuel their vehicles. People were stuck in elevators and subway cars were trapped between stations. Travelers were trapped at airports. Factories shut down and had to be restarted. Nuclear Power plants were particularly slow to come back online because of the necessary procedures to remove them from safe mode. There were 3000 fires reported just in New York City, many were started by candles. All total there were 11 deaths, just from a small bump in the road. View some photos here.

Of course, there was much debate on Capitol Hill4 which prompted mandatory standards to prevent cascading failures in the future. Then in 2011 it happened again. This time parts of Arizona, California and Mexico were victims and million of people were, once more, without electricity. Human error and a single downed power line once again proved the system is not invincible.

Experts agree that cascading failures are a dangerous facet of modern power grids and they are all but impossible to predict or prevent. “Large blackouts are likely to recur at regular intervals,” says Ian Dobson, a cascading failures expert and electrical and computer engineering professor at Iowa State University.

Blackout frequencies are increasing. From 2008-2012, an average 80 weather-related outages per year occurred which affected 50,000 households or more. This was more than double the amount from the previous five years.5

The answer to the problem is the development of micro grids which can be isolated and operate independently, but this is years off. In the meantime, the complex web of inter-connectivity rules:

Interconnectivity of Service

Let’s look next at the three main causes of alert: EMP / solar flares, cyberattacks by hackers, and physical terrorist attacks.

EMP Attack or Natural Geomagnetic Storm

In 2008, a commission of several experts was formed to “Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Attack.” They issued a 208 page report on Critical National Infrastructures. It did not paint a pretty picture. Due to the large scale use of electronics to control, communicate compute, store, manage and implement nearly every aspect of civilian systems left the united States vulnerable to an EMP attack resulting in catastrophic consequences. Their words, not mine.

The commission’s report is very thorough. They also point out that many of the components an EMP blast would affect are no longer manufactured in the United States and their acquisition ordinarily requires up to a year of lead time in routine, not emergency circumstances. This could result in significant parts of the electrical infrastructure being out of service for periods measures in months to a year or more. By one estimate, should the power go out and stay out for over a year, nine out of 10 Americans would likely perish, (Frank Gaffney, founder and president of the Center for Security Policy in Washington).

The commission identified several nations as already having the capability and an EMP attack could potentially be carried out by a terrorist organization. An EMP detonation can be originated from something as simple as a scud missile loaded with a “dirty bomb” launched from a container ship off the U.S. Coast. This is well within the reach of many of our enemies. While ISIS may, or may not, have possession of a dirty bomb, they have plenty of cash reserves to obtain one.

In 2014 former CIA director James Woolsey said the North Koreans launched a KSM-3 satellite into orbit capable of delivering a small nuclear warhead. Does anyone really think Kim Jong-un lacks the kuhunas to launch an attack? Does anyone question whether or not North Korea lacks the technological know-how?

Someone in the United State government got the message clearly. In 2015, the Pentagon let a $700 million contract to relocate critical computer systems deep underground at Cheyenne Mountain. The Norad commander explained it was to protect the electronic gear from an extreme solar flare of EMP attack.

It’s nice the military are taking care of themselves. The Washington elite have a bug-out plan in place Rich folks are buying abandoned missile silos that have been converted into self-sufficient, long-term living quarters. The 1% seem very knowledgeable and have taken steps to prepare. What about the remaining 99% of us. Have you even been informed of the commission report?

Solar Flare
A man-made detonation is not the only potential source of EMP disaster. A massive solar flare has the potential to create a large scale EMP event as well. In fact, the earth barely escaped a massive flare that could have been devastating. The EMP flashed through earth’s typical orbit about two weeks before the planet got there. This was an extremely close call.

“There had been a near miss about two weeks ago, a Carrington-class coronal mass ejection crossed the orbit of the Earth and basically just missed us,” said Peter Vincent Pry, who served on the Congressional EMP Threat Commission from 2001-2008. He was referring to the 1859 EMP named after astronomer Richard Carrington that melted telegraph lines in Europe and North America.

Cyberattack

It is one thing for a nation to launch an EMP detonation from a scud missile, or such. There could be retaliation. The MAD doctrine of mutually-assured destruction has kept the major powers in check for decades. However, cyberattacks can be carried out in a stealth manner bouncing IP addresses all over the world. It may be an individual or group, rather than a nation.

While the grid has not been attacked, banking, business and many government agencies have. On a daily basis we hear of hackers breaking in to this or that entity and stealing mounds of data. In 2014 hackers stole credit card data from 110 million Target customers. Shortly thereafter several big names were hit…and hit hard: eBay, J.P. Morgan, Home Depot, Anthem Health Care and more.

The IRS was recently hacked and the stolen information was used to file over 15,000 claims for a tax refund. The U.S. Office of Personnel Management was just breached for a second time. These attacks targeted forms submitted by intelligence and military personnel for security clearances. The information stolen was of a highly-sensitive nature. Check out an interactive informative infographic here.

Hacks from large to small occur every single day. No connected device is exempt. Even Sony Playstation was hacked in 2011 forcing the company to take their entire network down for 20 days at a cost $171 million. A long list of famous celebrities had their iCloud accounts hacked by a single man who said he was addicted to their personal life. Perhaps he was addicted to all their nude photographs. No device is safe!

Speaking of Sony, and North Korea…what about the movie The Interview, a comedy about journalists who get an interview with Kim Jong-un. Sony was hacked a month before the release. Close to 38 millions files were stolen and released on file sharing sites. Screening versions of five Sony films, the script to the latest James Bond film, embarrassing email between studio executives, salary data and other sensitive information. Korea officially denied the attack but warned it will go after the White House, Pentagon and “whole U.S. Mainland.” As said before, they have the capability.

The cyberattacks that are particularly scary involve government hackers. Stuxnet is a malicious cyber-worm developed jointly by the United States and Israel. It was successfully used to sabotage centrifuges used in the Iranian Natanz nuclear plant. It was the world’s first digital weapon of war. Iran retaliated to Stuxnet by attacking Aramco and turning 30,000 computers into bricks. All the computers could display was a image of the American flag burning. Chinese cyber criminals breached design files for over two dozen critical U.S. weapons systems, including critical missile defense programs.

In 2010, a bipartisan group of ten former national security, intelligence and energy officials sent a letter to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. The group included former secretaries of defense James Schlesinger and William Perry, former CIA directors John Deutsch and James Woolsey and former White House national security advisors Stephen Hadley and Robert McFarlane. The sobering letter concluded: “Virtually all of our civilian infrastructure – including telecommunications, water, sanitation, transportation, and healthcare – depends on the electric grid. The grid is extremely vulnerable to disruption by a cyber- or other attack. Our adversaries already have the capability to carry out such an attack. The consequences of a large-scale attack on the U.S. Grid would be catastrophic for our national security and economy. Under certain conditions, timely reconstitution of the grid following a carefully targeted attack if particular equipment is destroyed would be impossible; and according to government experts, would result in widespread outages for at least months to two years or more, depending on the nature of the attack.”

While the proposed Grid Reliability and Infrastructure Defense Act made it through the House of Representatives, it remain stuck in the Senate. Most legislation never makes it out of committee. The urgency can never be over-stated, yet its continually swept under the carpet. Preservation of the endangered pink-spotted purple-winged garfly certainly has more interest than TEOTWAWKI – the end of the world as we know it.

“We can’t defend against everything, but right now we’re vulnerable to just about about everything.” Major General Brett Williams, Former Director of Operations, U.S. Cyber Command.

Physical attacks

While an EMP blast makes for an exciting dystopian science-fiction movie, and while cyber-attacks also make great spy thrillers, we often forget the old school formula – physical attacks. Most power plants are not military installations where there is tight security.

Terrorists with a good working knowledge of the systems and controls comprising the grid could potentially make attacks targeted at key points to cause widespread outages, and cascading failures. There was an 2013 attack on a substation in Silicon Valley California carried out by unknown snipers. Jon Wellinghoff, former chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, expressed concern that the attack may have been a test run for a bigger strike.

We have already stated the difficulty in replacing some of the decades old equipment and much of it sits exposed to physical attack.

ISIS in America
Over 100,000 Muslims a year immigrate legally to America. According to a FoxNews article, 7 million Muslims have arrived since 1992.6 What percentage are ISIS or from other terrorist groups? It is unknown but they are there. Some clerics have entered and gone on speaking and recruitment tours across our country. Our leaders are too touchy-feely to revamp the immigration laws and stop this dangerous flow. Experts believe many are crossing over the Mexican border.

Terrorists

After a Texas incident over seven months ago, ISIS warned of imminent attacks on the United States. “We have 71 trained soldiers in 15 different states ready at our word to attack any target we desire. Out of the 71 trained soldiers 23 have signed up for missions like Sunday, We are increasing in number bithnillah. Of the 15 states, 5 we will name… Virginia, Maryland, Illinois, California, and Michigan. The disbelievers who shot our brothers think that you killed someone untrained, nay, they gave you their bodies in plain view because we were watching.”

They aren’t given to idle threats. They have declared a caliphate and are quickly adding to their territory and securing huge amounts of funding through the sale of crude oil. They are waging a worldwide jihad expecting to bring in their belief of the final apocalypse.

There are many radical sleeper cells in America. Some have been in existence over 15 years. Surely, most of these have shifted their allegiance to ISIS due to the religious nature of the caliphate. These are extremely dangerous because they have assimilated into every day life in their respective areas. They pretend to be “peaceful Muslims” while biding their time.

Some are not hidden at all: a photo from New York of a home flying an ISIS flag publicly.

Homegrown

The Bottom Line

Whether you believe any of the potential scenarios are not, the prudent man will prepare himself and his family. Proverbs 22:3 teaches us that a prudent man foresees danger and take refuge while the ignorant man keeps on going and suffers for it. As if it were important enough to be repeated, it appears once more in Proverbs 27:12.

If you are like me your choice of Bible translation is the King James which reads, “A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.” The English words “evil” is tranlated from the Hebrew word “ra” which means calamity, adversity, affliction, or trouble. The idea is that God’s people are prudent and are able to discern the times. We don’t foresee because we are prophets able to peer into the future, but because we are knowledgeable, vigilant and circumspect about what is happening all around us. We know that when “evil” is headed our way and we are prepared to take action to protect ourselves and those under our charge.

The simple, or ignorant, are devoid of this prudence and rather oblivious to the “evil” that lies at the doorsteps. They will not take action because they see it as foolishness. They take great joy in mocking the prudent of God just as the masses mocked Noah as he worked on building the ark. He took refuge and protected his family from the greatest catastrophe planet Earth has ever known. If you have taken the time to read this article and make it to this point, I commend you. My question is, what will you do from here. Will you chalk me up as “one of those conspiracy nuts,” chuckle and move on?…or will you take a serious look at preparing yourself and your family for the very good possibility of a natural disaster or man-made catastrophe? You owe it to yourself to at least verify my references and determine whether what I claim is true or false.

The choice is yours. If it turns out you made a bad one…do not show up at my door asking for help. Just as Noah shut the doors of the ark and let the unprepared perish, I am preparing for my immediate family and no one else. You are responsible for yourself.

More to follow….

Footnotes:
1 http://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=65&t=2
2 http://energy.gov/articles/top-9-things-you-didnt-know-about-americas-power-grid
3 http://www.ucsusa.org/clean-energy/how-electricity-grid-works
4 http://emp.lbl.gov/sites/all/files/interim-rpt-Aug-14-blkout-03.pdf
5 http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2013/08/12/protecting-electric-grid-increasingly-severe-weather-due-climate-change

Recommended Reading:
The following books seem to pop up everywhere I have researched. I admit I have not read them but I just obtained Ted Koppel’s book and have started it. It appears to be well written.

Light’s Out by Ted Koppel
One Second After by William R. Forstchen
Gridlock by Byron L. Dorgan & David Hagberg

Additionally: If you would like to know the science behind cascading power failures, I suggest you read this:
http://large.stanford.edu/courses/2010/ph240/brown-cohen1/

NOTE: This article was written by me on January 15, 2016 for posting on the Man Up Mississippi Blog. I decided to post it to my main blog due to the gravity of the material covered.