“A Grim and Difficult Dilemma”
When I first heard the term “Black Sky Event,” I was a tad unsure as to the meaning. In the past, we’ve covered “ Black Swan Events,” in our Survival Scout articles. To paint with a broad brush, these kinds of events effectively “freeze” systems of commerce through hacking, being overwhelmed, or as a result of those systems going offline.
A “Black Sky Hazard” then, is the Black Swan’s bigger, meaner brother. As the EIS (Electric Infrastructure Security) Council – who coined the term – defines it: A Black Sky Hazard is a catastrophic event that severely disrupts the normal functioning of our critical infrastructures in multiple regions for long durations.
Once I saw the definition, it immediately made sense. We’ve talked about how an electromagnetic pulse or EMP could take down our electrical grid in the past. To read that Survival Scout, click here.
This Wednesday, the EIS Council will conduct “Earth EX,” an “out-of-the-box senior level exercise” to assess response to Black Sky Hazards.
To quote the problem, as they observe it:
Concerns have grown over the potential for severe malicious or natural ‘Black Sky’ hazards associated with subcontinent scale, long duration power outages, with cascading failure of all our other increasingly interdependent infrastructures. This creates a grim and difficult dilemma: Restoration of any sector will only be possible with at least minimal operation of all the others. (emphasis mine)
To boil it all down, when the power goes out, eventually everything else we depend on will fail. Oil and gas. Water and wastewater. You get the picture.
That’s why the EIS council is inviting leaders from both the private and government sector to work on the problem.
Beyond a nuclear-detonated EMP and a Geomagnetic disturbance like a solar storm (which would also cause an EMP), the EIS council considers the following manmade and natural causes threats for a Black Sky Hazard:
- Intentional Electromagnetic Interference (IEMI)
- Cyber terrorism
- Coordinate physical attack
- High-magnitude earthquake
- Hurricanes and other severe weather
You can read more about these threats on their website, here.
Many might interpret these Black Sky exercises as reason to believe that a real event may be imminent.
However, I believe that the vulnerability of our grid and other critical infrastructures has been apparent to the vigilant like us for some time now.
If governments and the private sector want to bounce back from an event like this, the work they’re doing is absolutely essential. I just hope it’s not “too little, too late.”
There will be plenty of bureaucratic hoops to jump through for these “decision makers” before anything tangible will be done – you can bet on that.
This illustrates the importance of personal preparedness. If the grid were to go down, at least you have a plan for yourself. No one should only be left with the hope of everything just “bouncing back.”
How to Get Black-Sky Ready
Preparedness for Black Sky events carries the same guidelines as basic long-term plan, with a few special additions.
If a Black Sky event were to be caused by an EMP or solar flare, almost all personal devices and newer cars will also fail.
That means you need a plan for:
- A pre-established rendezvous points with family
- An alternative mode of transportation (like a bike or older model vehicle)
- A bug-out bag at the office and in the car – anywhere away from home
To give you an idea of how long-term a Black Sky event might be, I recommend:
Water: Freshwater source (preferably a natural body of fresh water) and the capability to filter thousands of gallons. We designed and built the Alexapure Pro precisely for this purpose. And because it requires no electricity – just gravity – to run, it’ll see you through the water demands of a Black Sky event.
Food: At the bare minimum, you’ll need 6 months of food per person in your family or party. A year’s worth would be ideal. After a year, you should have self-sufficiency plans in place, especially growing, raising, hunting and foraging your own food.
The list of skills and gear you will need beyond this will depend largely on your own personal situation. If you need help figuring it out, our preparedness advisors are standing by and will guide you every step of the way.
Finally, rest easy. Focus on what you can do today, and each day going forward. Don’t focus on ominous monikers like “Black Sky” and what the government is doing. It’s important to know about them, but dwelling on it does nothing good.
Committing to preparedness is about positive action in the face of the deepest darkness. It helps us lead brighter, more fulfilled lives.
We hope you feel the same.
Hope this article shed extra light on your preparedness path this weekend.
Have a great one, folks.
MPS Preparedness Advisor
For more information on the possible effects of an EMP on your vehicle, click here.