Joint United U.S.- Canada Electric Grid Security and Resilience Strategy
 

The Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team (ICS-CERT) with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that The White House, in conjunction with the Government of Canada, released this week the Joint United States-Canada Electric Grid Security and Resilience Strategy. This Joint United States-Canada Electric Grid Security and Resilience Strategy (Strategy) is a collaborative effort between the federal governments of the United States and Canada and is intended to strengthen the security and resilience of the U.S. and Canadian electric grid from all adversarial, technological, and natural hazards and threats.

Some additional background, in March 2016, U.S. President Barack Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued the “U.S.- Canada Joint Statement on Climate, Energy, and Arctic Leadership.” In the statement, they pledged to enhance efforts to “develop a joint U.S.-Canadian strategy for strengthening the security and resilience of the North American electricity grid [and to] work together to strengthen the security and resilience of the electric grid, including against the growing threat from cyber-attacks and climate change impacts.” The Canadian government and U.S. government established an interagency, bilateral Policy Committee to review past and current efforts to complete this objective. There are three strategic goals emphasized in the plan:
  • Protect Today’s Electric Grid and Enhance Preparedness - A secure and resilient electric grid that protects system assets and critical functions and is able to withstand and recover rapidly from disruptions is a priority for the governments of both the United States and Canada.
  • Manage Contingencies and Enhance Response and Recovery Efforts - The Strategy sets out a shared approach for enhancing continuity and response capabilities, supporting mutual aid arrangements such as cyber mutual assistance across a diverse set of stakeholders, understanding inter-dependencies, and expanding available tools for recovery and rebuilding.
  • Build a More Secure and Resilient Future Electric Grid - The United States and Canada are working to build a more secure and resilient electric grid that is responsive to a variety of threats, hazards, and vulnerabilities, including increased threats from climate change. To achieve this, the electric grid will need to be more flexible and agile, with an architecture into which new technologies may be readily incorporated.
The ICS-CERT plan