(AUSTIN, TX) — Senator Bob Hall (R-Edgewood), has been sounding the alarm of the threats to the United States from weapons designed to destroy the electrical grid since first elected to office in 2015. In 2016, Senator Hall delivered a presentation to Enterprise Forum Texas that highlighted that the risk of an attack from an adversarial country could be delivered by way of a weather balloon.
“There are several very real threats to the power grid, and the consequences would be so severe that we should address this now,” Hall said. “There are hostile countries that might cause this, but there are also natural forces that may also cause the same result soon. Either way, we need to be prepared.”
For over a decade, experts have warned that the U.S. electric grid is vulnerable to physical, cyber, and electromagnetic pulse (EMP) threats. However, unlike physical and cyber, the threat from an EMP to the nation’s electric grid has been all but ignored by the government and the electric industry.
The experts on the White House Commission on EMP concluded that one of the most likely high altitude nuclear (EMP) attacks would be delivered by a weather balloon. “I appreciate this threat not just as an electrical engineer, but also as a former U.S. Air Force officer who led a project team to protect the Minuteman missile system from this very same threat. We also know that other nations like Israel, China, South Korea, and Russia are taking the necessary steps to protect their electrical grids,” stated Hall.
We know for certain that the Chinese, as well as several other countries like Russia, Iran, and North Korea have in their war plans a pre-emptive EMP strike on the United States. They have told us this multiple times. As we move forward in ensuring we have the electrical generation capacity to meet the growing demand, Texans deserve all electric generation capacity to be resilient to all known threats; Natural and man-made.