ARLINGTON, Va. – The Department of Energy today awarded a $15 million award to the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association to help electric cooperatives expand their cyber monitoring capabilities of their industrial control facilities. The award will be spread over three years, with $10 million disbursed in 2022 and the remaining $5 million in subsequent years.
“As threats and threat actors evolve, electric cooperatives consistently work to improve their cyber defenses. Funding like this helps co-ops stay ahead of the curve,” said NRECA CEO Jim Matheson. “Our longstanding partnership with DOE makes the electric grid more resilient, reliable and secure.
“On behalf of America’s Electric Cooperatives, I thank the agency for recognizing this important opportunity. We look forward to working together to advance the real-time security and cyber capabilities of electric cooperatives.”
With the award funds, NRECA will partner with electric cooperatives to identify and deploy industrial control system monitoring technologies. The association will leverage learnings from this process to enhance the security and preparedness of all co-ops.
Electric cooperatives and other utilities have adopted or committed to adopt technologies to improve the security of the operational technologies and industrial control systems that manage the nation’s electric systems by enhancing the visibility, detection, and monitoring of these critical networks.
The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association is the national trade association representing nearly 900 local electric cooperatives. From growing suburbs to remote farming communities, electric co-ops serve as engines of economic development for 42 million Americans across 56 percent of the nation’s landscape. As local businesses built by the consumers they serve, electric cooperatives have meaningful ties to rural America and invest $12 billion annually in their communities.