Grid Operators Should Prepare For Solar Flares, FERC Says

Law360, New York (May 16, 2013, 2:23 PM EDT) -- The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Thursday finalized a rule to protect the nation’s bulk power system from geomagnetic disturbances like solar flares, as it looks to fill regulatory gaps that leave the grid vulnerable to disruptions.

Geomagnetic disturbances, or GMDs, are created by events like solar flares that alter the earth's magnetic field. They happen infrequently, but they can cause blackouts and damage electrical equipment. Current regulations aren't strong enough, according to FERC, which proposed the rule in October.

The rule is divided into two...
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