A Report on Non-Ionizing Radiation

Congress Urges Prompt Attention to EMP

July 23, 2004

The House Committee on Armed Services has released the findings of the commission charged with assessing the threat of an EMP attack to the U.S.

An EMP, which stands for “electromagnetic pulse,” is generated when a nuclear weapon is detonated in the upper atmosphere. An EMP can zap electronics over a wide area causing damage to critical infrastructure, such as the power grid, telecommunication systems and financial services. The commission urges prompt attention to this problem, which, it states, could be “catastrophic to the nation.” The Congress requested the study in the fall of 2000 and it was due to be completed in early 2002 (see MWN, N/D00, p.16).