A Flare For Preparedness: Obama Issues Executive Order on Space Weather Events

On October 13th, President Obama issued Executive Order 13744: Coordinating Efforts To Prepare the Nation for Space Weather Events to protect critical infrastructure and address potential vulnerabilities in an “all-of-nation endeavor”. Regularly-occurring space weather events like solar flares, solar energetic particles, and geomagnetic disturbances can mildly affect critical infrastructure systems and technologies. However, extreme space weather events can potentially disrupt large portions of the electrical power grid. To mitigate this threat, public and private sector stakeholders must coordinate to adequately prepare for extreme space weather.

Executive Order 13744 aims to:

  1. Improve capabilities to predict and detect space weather events.
  2. Establish plans to alert both the public and private sectors of impending events.
  3. Reduce risks to critical infrastructure through mitigation plans.
  4. Coordinate abilities to respond to and recover from space weather events.

This order works in conjunction with the current 2015 National Space Weather Action Plan to improve and expand national preparedness.

For more information, please visit Space Policy & National Security in the Featured Topics section of the HSDL.