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NEMA Lauds House Approval of SMART Study Act


07/29/2014 12:00PM

The National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) today expressed satisfaction that a provision directing an assessment of the electrical grid was included in HR 3696, the National Cybersecurity and Critical Infrastructure Protection Act of 2014, which passed the House yesterday by voice vote.

“Inclusion of the SMART Study Act as a provision in this cybersecurity bill demonstrates just how critical grid technologies are to a world facing increased cyber threats,” said NEMA President and CEO Evan R. Gaddis.

The provision would result in a comprehensive assessment of actions necessary to expand and strengthen the capabilities of the electrical power system to prepare for, respond to, mitigate, and recover from a natural disaster or cyberattack.

It was originally incorporated into the legislation through an amendment offered by Rep. Donald Payne, Jr. (D-NJ) in the Homeland Security Committee markup.

“Cyber threats are a major challenge as we transition to a modern electrical grid,” said Gaddis. “We believe this study would go a long way in describing how the electrical grid can be made more resilient through adoption of new technologies.”

Cybersecurity is only one threat facing the grid, Gaddis noted. Events such as Superstorm Sandy serve as a reminder that the grid is vulnerable to naturally-occurring events. A 2013 report released by the Executive Office of the President estimates that the annual cost nationwide of weather-related grid outages averages between $18 and $33 billion.

The National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) represents nearly 400 electrical, medical imaging, and radiation therapy manufacturers. Our combined industries account for more than 400,000 American jobs and more than 7,000 facilities across the U.S. Domestic production exceeds $117 billion per year. Our industry is at the forefront on electrical safety, reliability, resilience, efficiency, and energy security.

Press Contact:
NEMA Communications
703-841-3201
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