We don't got to show you no steenkin' critical assets!

Here's a guide to the grid from NPR. [img_assist|nid=2886|title=US Power Plants|desc=|link=none|align=right|width=480|height=310]It makes you wonder, doesn't it, how the electric utilities can have so few critical assets. I would think that most of those big splotches of red in the Southeastern United States where there are so many power plants that the resolution of the map can't show them all would be critical assets, but apparently, not so. There are, apparently, NO critical assets in the power generation industry in the Southeastern United States. Right. And if you actually believe that, I have some property in the far Southeastern United States, just at the tip of the Florida Keys, that I'd be happy to interest you in...but you will have to wait until low tide to visit.

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  • This is the problem with orienting a policy for infrastructure protection around assets instead of functionality. 

    In an N+1 condition, are any one of the generating plants critical?  No.  Others will take up the slack. But if you take out any two of the generating plants, do you have a problem? Of course!

    So which generating plants are critical? The question is insufficient to answer the need for reliable, safe power.  We need to ask better questions and to define the mission more carefully.  This goes as much for the load as it does the generation side of things.  

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