The UK government’s plan to deal with solar flares is so bad that it could be more deadly than coronavirus, Dominic Cummings has warned.
PM Boris Johnson’s former top-aide said preparations for a solar storm that could wreak havoc by shutting down radio signals and causing navigation blackouts were “completely hopeless”.
It comes after experts said there’s a risk of the sun shooting solar flares to Earth.
The space weather could knock out electrical grids, satellite communications and even the internet, researchers said.
Plans to deal with the potential catastrophe started in 2011 when it was added to the National Risk Assessment.
Government documents say both national and international preparation is needed to deal with the potential event.
Drawing up a response, officials said they would splash the cash on making an alert system for warnings of space weather, as well as planning for ‘severe’ events and changing infrastructure to sooth its impact.
But the eccentric Cummings slammed the plans and warned of devastation.
He said at a hearing today: “There is not a culture of talking to outside experts. I’ll give you a recent example, I was talking to some people who said to me ‘did you ever go and read the plan on solar flares?’
“I said no, and they said if you get some expert advice on that you’ll see the current government plan on that is just completely hopeless.
“If that happens we’re all going to be in a worse situation than Covid.
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"There ought to be an absolutely thorough, total review of all risk register programmes.
"One of the other things high on the risk register is anthrax – what happens if terrorists attack with anthrax?
"Personally I would be extremely concerned whether the plan is as robust as it should be."
It’s sent Twitter users into meltdown, with one saying: “Good news – I’m no longer worried about COVID.
“Less good news – I’m now focusing all my terror on our apparent lack of preparedness for the apparently devastating consequences of Solar Flares”
Another quipped: “My main takeaway from Cummings is there should be a Ministry of Mad S**t That Might Never Happen (But If It Does We're Screwed)”
The gov’s doc on the plans for solar flares admits more needs to be done, saying the rail and financial sectors are particularly at risk.
It added in its 40-page report: “Coronal Mass Ejections are explosive eruptions on the sun…
“This solar phenomenon is the most concerning element of severe space weather as it has the potential to cause the most severe impacts.
“The risk from severe space weather is not limited to the UK. (It) could occur anywhere.”
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