Watching Government: Making energy security real

Energy security has become an ambiguous concept-except when it is applied to protecting facilities and equipment. Then it becomes strikingly relevant.The oil and gas industry has historically recognized the importance of safeguarding its property from mischief and vandalism. Potential costs of not doing so can range from hundreds of thousands of dollars for a single onshore rig to millions for a refinery or natural gas processing plant. Concern over possible attacks by terrorists grew after Sept. 11, 2001. When Hurricanes Katrina and Rita disrupted Gulf Coast refining and transportation late last summer, the nation learned how much of its oil and gas system is concentrated in a single reg...

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