Congress Must Act
The country lost an important tool in the fight against terrorism when the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program was allowed to expire on July 27th, 2023. The program provides companies with valuable security tools, including the ability to vet employees against the FBI’s terrorist database and work with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to identify cyber threats.
Congress must act quickly to reinstate CFATS to restore protections for chemical facilities, workers and communities across the country. Doing so will bolster national security and support continued investments into enhancing security at chemical facilities.
CFATS has been reauthorized by Congress four times with strong bipartisan support and this time should be no different.
CFATS provides a strong yet flexible approach by setting a consistent set of uniform national standards that focuses on security. Under CFATS, companies must develop and submit security plans to DHS for approval. The program establishes practical security performance standards to address a wide range of potential threat scenarios, including a physical attack, theft and diversion and cyberattacks. The standards allow facilities to tailor their approach to address unique security risks and they are adaptable to help address emerging threats.
CFATS has a solid 15-year regulatory history, and the program has delivered solid results. According to a recent analysis by DHS, security measures at CFATS regulated facilities have increased by 60%. As a result, the country is more secure.