The debate surrounding the extent to which America is vulnerable to both man-made or naturally occurring electromagnetic pulse (EMP) and natural geomagnetic disturbance (GMD) has become superheated. To some, the dangers these phenomena pose are believed to be existential, while others portray EMP defense advocates as mad and believe its dangers unfounded or debatable. However, Duke Energy Corp. recently became an advocate for EMP/GMD defense by releasing its plan to link multiple power stations in an effort to create resiliency for its operations and customers. What is the root of the debate? The answer, as with many emerging national security issues, is nuanced and complex.
Historically, military powers have endeavored to exploit the advantages afforded by holding the high ground on the battlefield. Beginning in World War I with the introduction of the airplane and the new perspective it offered, the high ground migrated to the air. By the late 20th century, war fighters had greatly advanced the application of airpower. Today, aided by technology, the high ground has shifted to space.
Herschel Campbell is a Senior Fellow at the American Leadership & Policy Foundation, global security professional in the energy industry, and a former United States Air Force Intelligence Analyst.
Currently, Campbell performs high-level evaluations and assessments of global incidents. In this capacity, he originates threat assessments, conducts global asset monitoring, liaises with global regional security centers, briefs executive decision makers, and initiates and distributes worldwide alerts on conflict, terrorism, disease, geopolitical transitions, natural disasters, and socio-economic situations. Specific projects include papers and assessments on the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa and the development of corporate Crisis Mitigation and Action Plans.