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Energy Secretary Reviews Florida’s Power Grid, Warns of “Cyber Storms”

U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette says he is confident that Florida’s energy grid is prepared to withstand the next major hurricane.

“The utilities in Florida are prepared for what may be an above average hurricane season,” he explains.

Brouillette last month inspected the power grid’s preparedness for a hurricane and toured Turkey Point, a nuclear power station in Homestead.

“As we do get ready for the hurricane season, as we do make these preparations, it’s to understand the importance of nuclear energy,” says Brouilette.

Nearly two-thirds of Floridians were left without power after Hurricane Irma in September of 2017.

Since that time, the state has required utility companies to change the way they plan and prepare for major storms.

However, Brouillette is also concerned about threats to the nation’s power grid that most people cannot see.

He is warning of so-called “cyber storms,” or hacking attacks from U.S. adversaries that can be just as dangerous to a power grid as a hurricane.

“We have actors that would work very hard to disrupt portions of the distribution of electricity all throughout the country,” Brouilette adds.

Still, he does not believe that any adversary has the capability to shut off power nation-wide.

At President Donald Trump’s direction, the Department of Energy is now working with the Department of Defense on a task force designed to protect the U.S. power grid from hacking attacks.

“I must say, it’s a daily fight,” Brouillette says. “It’s every single day and every hour of every day.”