Reducing Vulnerability: The Energy Jugular

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This chapter of the book, Nuclear Arms: Ethics, Strategy, Politics, details America’s energy security vulnerability. America’s energy system contains multiple causes of energy insecurity: complexity (because the causes of failure are impossible to foresee), control and synchronism, hazardous fuels, inflexibility and interdependence, specialized requirements, and difficulty of repair. There are specific vulnerabilities as well, in terms of liquefied natural gas, oil and gas systems, power stations and electric grids, and nuclear facilities. The authors propose strategies for dealing with these failures. The strategies include designing energy systems for resilience, redundancy, and diversity, and for more efficient use.