the executive order prohibits the use of equipment for the power grid manufactured by a company under the control of a foreign opponent, or the purchase of any equipment that poses a threat to national security.
“Additional measures are necessary to protect the safety, integrity and reliability of electrical equipment in the bulk feed system used in the United States,” wrote Trump. “In light of these findings, I hereby declare a national emergency regarding the threat to the United States’ bulk food system.”
The ordinance also created a task force to protect the power grid from attack and share risk management information to prevent interference. Members of the task force will include the Secretaries of Commerce, Defense and Homeland Security, as well as the Director of National Intelligence.
Trump noted in the order that the power system was a target for those who “sought to commit malicious acts” against the United States, highlighting concerns about cyber attacks in particular.
“A successful attack on our bulk electricity system would pose significant risks to our economy, human health and security, and would make the United States less able to act to defend itself and its allies,” wrote Trump. .
Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette applauded the decree, saying in a statement that it “would significantly reduce the ability of foreign adversaries to target our critical electrical infrastructure.”
“Today President Trump has shown bold leadership in protecting the US bulk electricity system and ensuring the security and prosperity of all Americans,” said Brouillette. “It is imperative that the bulk feed system be protected from exploitation and attacks from foreign threats.”
The order establishes the Secretary of Energy as the official responsible for identifying the equipment currently used in the bulk feed system that poses a risk, and for working to remove and replace this equipment. The secretary is also responsible for creating a list of “pre-qualified” suppliers with whom he is deemed safe to work.
The Department of Energy has stepped up efforts to protect the network from attack in recent years. Former Energy Secretary Rick perryRick PerryWhy We Need To Switch From Fossil Fuels To Clean Energy Quickly Rick Perry Calls For Elastic Donations For His 91-Year-Old Mom Who Seams Face Masks The Hill’s Morning Report – Trump Takes Unexpected Action To Contain Coronavirus PLUS created the Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security and Emergency Response (CESER) in 2018 to help prepare for and respond to threats.
The official CESER account tweeted The agency “stands ready” to help defend the bulk electrical system on Friday, adding that “malicious actors” have targeted the electrical system in the past decade.
Malicious actors have sought to exploit unauthorized access to the bulk feed system against the United States for more than a decade. At the direction of @SecBrouillette, CESER is ready to work with its partners to secure the private and federal supply of critical BPS components. https://t.co/7by42IZhd9
– DOE CESER (@DOE_CESER) May 1, 2020