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OCR for page 48
Use of Underground Facilities to Protect Critical Infrastructures: Summary of a Workshop CLOSING REMARKS Dr. George Baker provided the following summary observations from the workshop presentations and breakout session discussions. He noted that, although UGFs may not be a panacea for critical infrastructure protection, workshop participants believe they offer many important benefits in the areas of physical protection and security controls. UGFs would have deterrent value against both terrorist and military threats. The initial impression of many workshop participants was that UGFs offer no benefits for protecting infrastructures from cyber-attacks. UGFs, however, can indeed play an important role in reconstituting networks following a cyber-attack because they provide a safe haven for the storage of critical backup media and systems. In addition, the military view of information warfare is that it includes both electronic and physical attacks. Although UGFs may not improve survivability against electronic attacks, they do mitigate against physical attacks on information systems and can speed recovery following a cyber-attack. Serious consideration of UGFs as an option for protecting critical infrastructures will require cost comparisons with above-ground facilities that afford the same level of protection. There is good reason to expect that UGFs will provide cost benefits with respect to blast hardening and long-term maintenance. Europe has the most comprehensive data on life-cycle costs, but these data must be carefully evaluated to determine their applicability to the United States. Education and consensus building in the infrastructure community regarding the capabilities and utilization of UGFs will be essential. The underground technical community must get its message across to both corporate America and the American public. Within the government, DoD is in the strongest position to organize a coordinated effort. A designated clearinghouse organization is needed to hold and distribute information and serve as ''matchmaker'' for users in search of suitable underground sites. Furthermore, establishment of an academic center for underground studies would enhance the visibility and encourage the acceptance and use of underground construction in the United States. In the future a useful pilot project might begin with the selection of two infrastructure applications as a point of focus. These applications would be the basis for discussions between government and industry on cost-risk benefits and an implementation approach. If convincing arguments were forthcoming, with proper government incentives, the exercise could lead to a demonstration project for a prime infrastructure function. Dr. Baker noted that UGFs appear to be an important tool for protecting critical infrastructures by providing physical security and the capability to reconstitute critical infrastructure functions. The technical feasibility and benefits are well established, with many precedents of underground infrastructure applications, most notably in Scandinavian countries and Switzerland. The biggest remaining challenge is to establish the cost and risk benefits to the United States.
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Use of Underground Facilities to Protect Critical Infrastructures: Summary of a Workshop Dr. Baker thanked the members of the Underground Site Infrastructure Working Group which was largely responsible for planning the workshop and the National Research Council and Board on Infrastructure and the Constructed Environment for convening the workshop and expressed his hopes for a future association in this area. He recognized the keynote speakers and all of the panelists for their presentations and expressed his pleasure at having Arnfinn Jenssen, Derek Long, and Ben Vretblad here from Norway, the United Kingdom and Sweden, respectively. Dr. Baker concluded by saying that the workshop was a defining moment, that resulted in some excellent ideas and that the challenge now is to act. Mr. Little extended his thanks to everyone on behalf of the board. He stated that the use of UGFs for infrastructure protection is an important issue and that going forward requires that the discussion begun during the workshop be continued in the infrastructure community at large.
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