Fort Worth, TX (PRWEB) March 26, 2014
Certrec, a leading licensing and regulatory compliance service provider that supports NRC and NERC compliance, is pleased to announce their expertise and availability to support utilities and operators with NERC/FERC physical security needs as they develop.
Issued earlier this month, FERC’s order, taking major action that will impact the owners and operators of assets where damage may affect reliable operations of the grid, requires NERC to develop physical security standards applicable to all owners and operators of Bulk-Power System assets. The order emphasizes the Commission’s growing concerns over physical security of and security threats to the power system infrastructure, especially in light of vulnerabilities exposed in last years sophisticated attack on Pacific Gas & Electric’s Metcalf substation in California.
“We see many companies touting physical security experience, but we believe utility experience is critical to a successful program. Providing physical security to protect an asset that is essentially a box or building is inadequate. It is important to understand the total asset and all of its potential vulnerabilities. A complete understanding of a location’s security vulnerabilities, operations, and the specific technical aspects is important for an effective program,” says Mike Shannon, Certrec Physical Security Consultant.
According to FERC Docket No. RD14-6-000, issued on March 7, 2014, “The reliability standard mandates that owners and operators of the bulk-power system take at least four steps to protect physical security:
1. Owners and operators must perform a risk assessment of their system to identify facilities that, if rendered inoperable or damaged, could have a critical impact on the operation of the interconnection through instability, uncontrolled separation, or cascading failures of the bulk-power system.
2. Owners and operators of critical facilities must evaluate potential threats and vulnerabilities to those facilities.
3. Owners and operators must develop and implement a security plan to address potential threats and vulnerabilities.
4. The risk assessment used by an owner or operator to identify critical facilities should be verified by an entity other than the owner or operator.”
The Commission has directed NERC to submit the proposed Reliability Standards to the Commission within 90 days of the date of the order.
“Certrec’s extensive operations and engineering capabilities compliment our many years of regulatory experience. Additionally, for our nuclear customers, regulatory-mandated physical security has been a part of our regulatory landscape for many years. This combination is essential for crafting an effective physical security program,” says Ted Enos, Certrec President.
Founded in 1988, Certrec is regulatory compliance service provider with more than 1,000 cumulative years of energy industry experience helping clients manage the regulatory process to their advantage.
Certrec's Office of Licensing and Compliance (OLC), Office of Assessment and Recovery (OAR), Office of NERC Compliance (ONC), and Office of New Plant (ONP) solutions are used by nuclear, fossil, hydro, solar, and wind utilities and Registered Entities across the United States when complying with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) licensing and compliance standards.
Certrec is ISO 27001 certified, ensuring that its regulatory compliance web-tools and facilities comply with an internationally recognized standard of best practices regarding business, cyber and physical security and control.