Energy Security a Giant Reason for Renewable Grid

May 11, 2021

A retired General, and a local rural official, both concerned about keeping energy flowing, both advocates of resilient, distributed energy.


The all-electric Ford F150 pickup truck is one of the most important vehicles for electrification in the US, where the F150 has been the most popular passenger vehicle in the country for a long time.

He compared it to Ford’s Model T and Mustang, as well as Toyota’s Prius and Tesla’s Model 3:

“Every so often, a new vehicle comes along that disrupts the status quo and changes the game … Model T, Mustang, Prius, Model 3. Now comes the F-150 Lightning. America’s favorite vehicle for nearly half a century is going digital and fully electric. F-150 Lightning can power your home during an outage; it’s even quicker than the original F-150 Lightning performance truck; and it will constantly improve through over-the-air updates.”

4 Responses to “Energy Security a Giant Reason for Renewable Grid”

  1. rhymeswithgoalie Says:

    While a more distributed grid may be more resilient against power plant dropouts, storm damage and deliberate physical attacks, I don’t see how such a grid would have any special advantage against cyberattacks, as you still need software to manage the loads across whatever variety of power sources (and power flow directions).

    I keep going back to some of the basic failures of the Deepwater Horizon blowout preventer: All of that very expensive backup equipment had a dead-man system that was wired backwards, which basic testing and inspection would have detected. Software security is so much more complicated than that: People get complacent if they know the software correctly performs a complex set of functions correctly and can handle common errors, without thinking in terms of deliberate malign attempts to break it.

    • redskylite Says:

      Why “people” may get complacent or ignorant of the dangers to computer systems, I would not expect the management in charge of energy provision to fall in this category. I have to ask, were they using top level encryption ?, vpn’s and why were sensitive parts of the system even available on the internet, do they even have a decent disaster/recovery plan. We know we live in a dangerous hackable/crackable world.

      • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

        Awkward phrasing but to the point: “With software security, you don’t always get what you pay for, but you almost never get what you don’t pay for.”

        Between tech ignorance and management “providing shareholder value” by cheaping out on overhead like well-maintained software function* and security, corporate culture gives plenty of opportunity for failure.

        *Remembering that the unhacked systems are still vulnerable to their own bugs and unconsidered rare conditions.

        • redskylite Says:

          I know companies like to keep costs down and outsource/contract much of their I.T work these days – but just imagine if banks exposed their systems to international crackers. Energy providers must rate as among top need for security and take all necessary action to protect their I.T resources, distributed or not.

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