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More About SSA EMO and Sectors

The Office of Infrastructure Protection's Sector-Specific Agency Executive Management Office (SSA EMO) oversees the Department's infrastructure protection programs within six key Critical Infrastructure and Key Resources Sectors:

Consolidation of what would be otherwise be six Sector-Specific Agencies (SSAs) within a single organizational structure allows SSA EMO to incorporate shared knowledge and experiences to benefit planning across the sectors.

Chemical Sector

The Chemical Sector works with critical infrastructure partners on a voluntary basis to develop, coordinate, and implement programs to increase chemical facility protection and resilience. An integral component of the U.S. economy, the Chemical Sector employs up to 850,000 people nationwide and earns revenues of more than $689 billion per year. The Chemical Sector and the products it produces are essential to many facets of modern life including a safe water supply, energy production, increased food production, housing, health care, computer technology, and transportation. National and economic security, as well as our present standard of living, depends on the continued production and transportation of chemicals and the vitality of the Chemical Sector.

Voluntary chemical security programs include:

  • Voluntary Chemical Assessment Tool. VCAT is a secure, web-based application originally designed for use by non-regulated chemical facilities. The tool allows owners and operators to identify their facilities' current risk level and implement strategies to reduce overall risk.
  • Chemical Sector Security Summit. The Chemical SSA co-hosts the annual Chemical Sector Security Summit with the Chemical Sector Coordinating Council (SCC). The Summit consists of workshops, presentations, and discussions, covering current security regulations, industry best practices, and tools for the Chemical Sector.

Chemical Sector Training and Resources


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Commercial Facilities Sector

In collaboration with its partners within the Commercial Facilities Sector, SSA EMO coordinates preparedness and infrastructure protection for a wide range of facilities, from commercial buildings to stadiums, theme parks, and shopping centers.

Extremely diverse, the Commercial Facilities Sector has eight major components: Entertainment and Media, Gaming, Lodging, Outdoor Events, Public Assembly, Real Estate, Retail, and Sports Leagues.

Commercial Facilities Sector Training and Resources


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Critical Manufacturing Sector

The SSA EMO for the Critical Manufacturing Sector is responsible for preparedness and infrastructure protection in four broad manufacturing industries:

  • Primary metal manufacturing
  • Machinery manufacturing
  • Electrical equipment, appliance, and component manufacturing
  • Transportation equipment manufacturing


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Dams Sector

SSA EMO is responsible for coordinating activities related to preparedness and infrastructure protection for dam projects, navigation locks, levees, hurricane barriers, mine tailings impoundments, and other similar water retention and control facilities. There are more than 82,000 dams in the United States, approximately 65 percent of which are privately owned and 85 percent of which are regulated by state dam safety offices.

SSA EMO is working to engage sector stakeholders, including owners and operators, and to provide information through reference documents, exercises, and training modules that enhance prevention, protection, security, recovery, and resilience capabilities.

An example of a Dams Sector initiative is the Dams Sector Consequence-Based Top Screen (CTS) methodology. The Dams SSA manages the annual implementation of the Dams methodology and corresponding online tool, which are utilized by sector stakeholders to identify those high-consequence facilities within the Dams Sector whose failure or disruption could be potentially associated with the highest possible impact among sector assets.


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Emergency Services Sector

The SSA EMO for the Emergency Services Sector (ESS) is responsible for preparedness and infrastructure protection for this vital sector whose mission is to save lives, protect property and the environment, assist communities impacted by all-hazards, and aid recovery from emergency situations.

The primary focus of the ESS is protecting other sectors, which creates unique challenges and obstacles to protecting the assets and personnel of the ESS itself. Each of the disciplines and specialized capabilities within the Emergency Services Sector contributes to its successful performance:

  • Law Enforcement
  • Fire and Emergency Services
  • Emergency Management
  • Emergency Medical Services
  • Public Works
  • Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT)
  • Search and Rescue (SAR)
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD)
  • Special Weapons and Tactics & Tactical Operations (SWAT)
  • Aviation Units
  • Public Safety Answering Points/911 Call Centers

These functions tend to be organized at the state and local levels of government.

SSA EMO is expanding information-sharing capabilities internal and external to the sector and defining parameters to assess risk through the development of tailored programs, initiatives, and tools, including the Homeland Security Information Network.

Read the Emergency Services Sector Snapshot (PDF, 2 pages - 738 KB)

Nuclear Reactors, Materials, and Waste Sector

The Nuclear SSA within the SSA EMO is responsible for working with the Nuclear Government Coordinating Council (NGCC) and Nuclear Sector Coordinating Council (NSCC) to:

  • Implement the National Infrastructure Protection Program (NIPP) sector partnership model and risk management framework
  • Develop protective programs, resiliency strategies, and related requirements
  • Provide sector-level Critical Infrastructure and Key Resources (CIKR) protection guidance in line with the overarching guidance established by the Department pursuant to HSPD-7.

Working in collaboration with partners, the Nuclear SSA is responsible for developing and revising the Nuclear Sector-Specific Plan (SSP) and other sector-level reports to enable national cross-sector CIKR protection program assessments.

In accordance with HSPD-7, the Nuclear SSA is also responsible for coordinating Nuclear Sector protective programs through collaboration with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), the Department of Energy (DOE), and the private sector, as well as other sector partners. This collaboration includes the development and coordination of appropriate voluntary protection and resilience related information-sharing and the implementation of protective programs within the sector.

Nuclear Reactors, Materials, and Waste Sector Training and Resources


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