How To Get Your NERC Compliance And Save Pinching Penalties

In the modern world, no one can survive without electricity. Hence, power generation and transmission are some of the most crucial infrastructures in every part of the world. Every country has its own set of regulations dictated by the authorized bodies. Largely in North America, the responsibility of taking care of security regulations is shouldered by NERC.

What is NERC?

NERC, or North American Electric Reliability Corporation, is a non-profit corporation that regulates bulk power delivery systems (BPS) in the continental United States, Canada, and the northern portion of Baja California, Mexico. NERC was established in 1968 to improvise the stability and security of BPS in North America. This organization keeps a strict check on the bulk power system to ensure that the power grid infrastructure functions without any threat or disruption.

Every entity dealing with a bulk power delivery system needs to abide by the standards chalked out by NERC. The companies not compliant with NERC are subjected to heavy penalties.

What are NERC Reliability Standards?

NERC has chalked out 14 standards that companies dealing with BPS should know. The reliability of the BPS is gauged in two ways -operating reliability and adequacy.

NERC thoroughly checks the system for loopholes in the operating reliability. It covers any unanticipated interruptions in power transmission due to disturbance in the system. NERC categorizes disturbance as localized disruptions (disturbance or interruption) and cascading blackouts (disruptions affecting large areas).

The organization also ensures that the system works adequately, meaning the system offers adequate power to fulfill the demand. The companies providing power are required to monitor supply and demand for the specific area to ensure adequacy.

NERC makes sure that the system functions optimally, without unforeseen outages.

The NERC Reliability Standards covers an array of operational components for BPS operators, including CIP (Critical Infrastructure Protection), EOP (Emergency Preparedness and Operations), PRC (Protection and Control), and FAC (Facilities Design, Connections, and Maintenance).

NERC-CIP Compliance

The NERC-CIP compliance depends on four objectives including, reliability, continued reading, assurance, and risk-based approach. The companies dealing with BPS attain these objectives through various standards and requirements dictated by NERC.

Every standard entails some requirements related to the specific domain of reliability and security of the electric operations.

How to achieve NERC-CIP Compliance?

Every company dealing with bulk power delivery systems needs to comply with NERC CIP standards. The Critical Infrastructure Protection Committee (CIPC), along with NERC, works with partners in the industry to get feedback and create new standards. NERC works in conjunction with its regional partners to ensure compliance with the industry partners.

If you are a bulk power supply owner or operator who wants NERC CIP compliance, you need to ensure that you implement all the measures and guidelines you are supposed to stick to under all the CIP standards.

CIP-002 deals with the categorization system intended to determine the critical assets. Determining the items that are critical assets is what you need to do to become NERC compliant.

CIP-003 deals with controls for managing security, and CIP-004 outlines standards for the training personnel to get CIP compliance.

CIP-005 and CIP-006 deal with fabricating security parameters, both physically, as well as electronically.

CIP-007 offers insight into managing system security.

CIP-008 and CIP-009 outline the guidelines and procedures to be implemented if an incident occurs, entailing how to report the incident and implement the recovery plans.

CIP-010 outlines change management as well as vulnerabilities.

CIP-011 outlines standards for safeguarding information.

CIP-014 deals with physical security.

The bottom line

Achieving NERC compliance is necessary for the security of the providers and users. Make sure you comply with each standard. You will have to undergo a NERC CIP audit.

If you need assistance, reach out to NERC compliance consulting companies and avoid penalties.


, IPS, Wire, English


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