Disaster Planning with Earth Ex: BLACK SKY

A new Tabletop Exercise opportunity will  conducted online by the National Information Sharing Consortium (NISC). Last year, thousands of people from various organizations across the globe participated in a similar exercise. The exercise is entitled “Earth Ex 2018- All- Sector Response Transnational Hazard Exercise” and is available at no cost to your organization. The exercise scenario focuses on severe malicious or natural “Black Sky” hazards associated with subcontinent scale, long duration power outages, with cascading failure of all our other increasingly interdependent infrastructures.


This exercise will take place on the morning of August 22, 2018 (with webinars and additional information to be released prior). Any organization can register to participate at the link below as of June 1, 2018. Health care entities can choose between two “lanes” or paths of play at the time of registration. These paths are the “Medical and Health Care Provider Lane” for hospitals and the “Nursing and Other Long-Term/ Specialty Care Lane” for others. Webinar slides and additional information attached.




Please keep in mind this exercise will take approximately four hours to complete and is designed to be internally facilitated, assessed, and evaluated. Organizations are responsible for compiling their individual facility level AAR/IPs.


Thank you,


Shaylin Deignan

Program Coordinator, Granite State Health Care Coalition

Foundation for Healthy Communities

125 Airport Road
Concord, NH 03301
(603) 415-4263 direct

e-mail: sdeignan@healthynh.org

@healthynh; healthynh.org



More on Earth Ex:

Earth Ex 2018- All- Sector Response Transnational Hazard Exercise


Today’s lifeline infrastructures are interconnected and resourced on unprecedented scales, with supply chains spanning nations and, increasingly, the world.  With this growing integration and global reach, they have brought us remarkable capabilities.

At a price.   

Concerns have grown over the potential for severe malicious or natural “Black Sky” hazards associated with subcontinent scale, long duration power outages, with cascading failure of all our other increasingly interdependent infrastructures.  This creates a grim and difficult dilemma:  Restoration of any sector will only be possible with at least minimal operation of all the others.

A Black Sky Hazard is a catastrophic event that severely disrupts the normal functioning
of our critical infrastructures in multiple regions for long durations.
Read more:  https://www.eiscouncil.org/Blacksky.aspx

To deal with this deadlock, careful sector by sector and cross-sector resilience planning is crucial.  However, such plans, to be effective, must be exercised.  With the diversity and the national and global scale of the infrastructures we now depend on, this requires an unprecedented, multi-sector, national and international exercise series.



EARTH EX is a state-of-the-art, video-enabled, distributed, collaborative partner-developed exercise designed to meet this need. Each year, the exercise is based on a different, selected Black Sky hazard.  In 2018, an unprecedented combination of video-enabled and text-based injects will support interactive participation of 20 different sectors.  Hosted by EIS Council as part of the EPRO® Resource Family, these annual multi-sector, international exercises are being developed to evaluate and improve restoration support, preparedness, response and recovery plans for severe hazards. As the series continues, it will provide increasing opportunities to enhance coordinated planning across all infrastructure sectors, and their corporate, government and NGO partners.



Decision Making for Disrupted Scenarios: EARTH EX simulates a subcontinent-scale, long duration power outage, with cascading failures of all other infrastructures. The exercise format offers executive and senior level operational decision makers the opportunity to review critical decision-making policies, processes, roles and responsibilities – essential to the success of all other response and recovery operations.

Develop or Review Resilience Policies and Plans in a “Come as you are” Exercise: Participation is voluntary and open to all organizations that need to be prepared for long duration power outages. The exercise is designed for self-evaluation, with distributed play conducted using electronic tools, and local facilitation for feedback and execution.

Prioritization and Coordination across Multiple Sectors: EARTH EX is constructed as a multi-sector scenario. Participants receive situational awareness updates from each of the critical sectors, providing a broad immersive environment simulating real world impacts of the scenario.

Different injects provided for 20 sectors, supporting three phases:

Phase 1 – Initial impact and response

Phase 2 – Cascading, multi-sector impact and response: Utilizes critical sector and cross-sector situational awareness and coordination

Phase 3 – The Path Ahead:  Facilitated dynamic analysis and feedback.

Logistics: Dynamic, multi-phase 4-Hour exercise, delivered world-wide via internet in working hours of all time zones  
EARTH EX 2018 includes two 90 minute, replayable dynamic exercise phases representing different aspects of the response and recovery timeline, and one reflective phase. Each phase begins with a video-based framing scenario inject, using sector-specific injects for each exercise “lane,” developed by key stakeholders in that sector.