EIS Council Conference Explores Energy Sector Challenges and Resilience Strategies

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Exploring challenges and possible solutions for threats to grid security, infrastructure and communication networks were the focus of a conference held at the PJM campus Feb. 5 and 6.

Gladys Brown Dutrieuille, former chair of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.

Day one of the EIS Council’s Resilient Renewable Electric Planet (R2eP) Conference focused on disaster-scenario issues affecting grid resilience and reliability and possible cascading impacts to other life-sustaining infrastructure systems. Topics included management of the rapidly evolving generation mix driven by policies and consumer preferences coupled with growing electricity demand.

The gathering included regulators familiar to PJM, including former chair of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, Gladys Brown Dutrieuille; current Pennsylvania PUC Chair Stephen M. DeFrank; and Richard Mroz, former president of the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities. The three participated in a panel on the practical and political realities of achieving a resilient system.

Brig. Gen. Michael J. “Apollo” Lovell.

How public and private sector representatives can collaborate to improve resilience amid this growing threat landscape was the focus of day two. Tools for communications and rapid recovery to restore essential electric sector service and prevent cascading disruption was the primary focus, especially in the wake of external threats.

For example, efforts to foster resilience to disruptive damage from an intentional electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack were presented by Brig. Gen. Michael J. “Apollo” Lovell.

Based in the U.S., the United Kingdom and Israel, the nonprofit EIS Council focuses on disaster preparedness and response strategies for public and private sector organizations worldwide.