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Photo: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Biden administration said it's "working with" fuel pipeline operator Colonial Pipeline to try and restart operations after a ransomware attack took it offline.

Why it matters: Friday night's cyberattack is "the most significant, successful attack on energy infrastructure" known to have occurred in the U.S., notes energy researcher Amy Myers Jaffe, per Politico.

  • The Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration issued a regional emergency declaration for 17 states and Washington, D.C., to keep fuel supply lines open.

The big picture: Colonial Pipeline carries 45% of fuel supplies in the eastern U.S. Some 5,500 miles of pipeline has been shut down in response to the attack.

  • While gasoline and diesel prices aren't expected to be impacted if pipeline operations resume in the next few days, fuel suppliers are becoming "increasingly nervous" about possible shortages, Bloomberg notes.

What's happening: The emergency declaration covers: Alabama, Arkansas, D.C., Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.

  • The DoT agency said in a statement the declaration "addresses the emergency conditions creating a need for immediate transportation of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, and other refined petroleum products and provides necessary relief."
  • Colonial said in a statement Sunday while its main fuel lines remained offline, some smaller lines between terminals and delivery points were now operational.
"[We] will bring our full system back online only when we believe it is safe to do so, and in full compliance with the approval of all federal regulations."
— Excerpt from Colonial statement

What they're saying: Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo told CBS' "Face the Nation" there's an "all hands on deck" effort to resume operations.

  • "We are working closely with the company, state and local officials, to make sure that they get back up to normal operations as quickly as possible and there aren’t disruptions in supply," she told CBS' John Dickerson.

Of note: The shutdown follows other significant cyberattacks on U.S. companies and the federal government in recent months.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

Go deeper

Updated May 8, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Ransomware attack forces shutdown of major U.S. fuel pipeline

A police officer stands guard inside the gate to the Colonial Pipeline Co. Pelham junction and tank farm in Pelham, Alabama, in 2016. Photo: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A major U.S. fuel pipeline running from Texas to New York has been taken offline by its operator because of a ransomware attack, Colonial Pipeline said Saturday.

Why it matters: It's a significant breach of critical infrastructure and comes on the heels of multiple other major cyberattacks on both U.S. companies and the federal government.

University of Michigan reaches $490M settlement in sex abuse case

Jon Vaughn, a former University of Michigan and NFL football player, speaks at a press conference in Ann Arbor, Mich., in June 2021. Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

The University of Michigan on Wednesday reached a $490 million settlement with over a thousand survivors who allege that they were sexually assaulted by a former physician in the school's athletic department.

Driving the news: "It's been a long and challenging journey and these survivors have refused to remain silent," attorney Parker Stinar said Wednesday.

4 hours ago - Technology

3D printing's next act: big metal objects

Chief Scientist Andy Bayramian makes modifications to the laser system on Seurat's 3D metal printer. Photo courtesy of Seurat Technologies.

A new metal 3D printing technology could revolutionize the way large industrial products like planes and cars are made, reducing the cost and carbon footprint of mass manufacturing.

Why it matters: 3D printing — also called additive manufacturing — has been used since the 1980s to make small plastic parts and prototypes. Metal printing is newer, and the challenge has been figuring out how to make things like large car parts faster and cheaper than traditional methods.