Published On: Wed, Jun 17th, 2020

US Secretary of Energy Discusses Hurricane Preparedness

On June 12, U.S. Secretary of Energy, Dan Brouillette, attended a briefing in Miami from Florida Power & Light Company pertaining to hurricane preparedness and the use of technology in restoring power during this hurricane season.

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez, the City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, and FPL CEO Eric Silagy met with Brouillette to discuss the logistics of handling this hurricane season and potential foreign cyberattacks on our power grids.

Photo Courtesy of the U.S. Dept. of Energy

“It’s very important that we get ready [for hurricane season]. Nobody does it better than the utilities in Florida,” Sec. Brouillete said in an interview on the Joyce Kaufman Show. “So, we’re down there… to visit with some of the folks on the ground and take away perhaps some best practices, some lessons that we can share with other parts of the country.”

One of the major concerns addressed by Brouillette, aside from losing power in the midst of a storm, is a cyberattack on our power grids.

“As we face these types of pandemics, or types of disruptions in our daily lives, adversaries around the world would love to take advantage of that, so we’re watching the situation very closely and ensuring that countries like China, Russia, Iran and others, who are adversaries to the United States do not take advantage of this particular time period,” Brouillette commented.

Brouillette said that President Trump’s Nuclear Fuel Working Group’s Strategy to Restore American Nuclear Energy and the Bulk Power Executive Order are essential to our energy independence and protection strategies.

The Strategy to Restore American Nuclear Energy recommends “taking a whole-of-government approach to supporting the U.S. nuclear energy industry in exporting civil nuclear technology in competition with state-owned enterprises,” according to the U.S. Department of Energy website.

On May 1, the Bulk Power Executive Order authorizes Brouillette to work with the Cabinet and the energy industry to secure America’s Bulk Power System, one of the major electric system networks in the country.

Photo Courtesy of the U.S. Dept. of Energy

“We can prepare for [hurricanes] by taking prudent steps to ensure our grid is ready, reliable, resilient and secure,” Brouillette told the Orlando Sentinel. “We also need to be prepared for another kind of storm- this one manmade- as new cyber threats and attacks against our energy infrastructure pose a very real danger.”

After the hurricane preparedness briefing, Brouillette traveled to FPL’s Turkey Point Nuclear Plant, responsible for generating 1,600 megawatts of energy– enough to power more than 900,000 homes.

Finally, Brouillette toured the Juno Beach facilities to monitor the wind, solar, nuclear and natural gas power plans for FPL and NextEra Energy Resources.

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