President Putin recently made some alarming statements about U.S. plans to cancel the current American approach to disposing of excess plutonium. His comments are important because the United States and Russia have an agreement to each dispose of 34 tons of excess plutonium generated by the two countries’ nuclear weapons programs. The Russian president suggested that the approach proposed by the Obama administration, to dilute the plutonium and dispose of it in a geological repository, was unsatisfactory and could damage U.S.-Russian relations. Read more >
Latest Nuclear Weapons Posts
April 21, 2016 11:19 AM EDT
April 11, 2016 5:01 PM EDT
Last week the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) released its Fiscal Year 2017 Stockpile Stewardship and Management Plan, the agency’s annual update on its 25-year plan for the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile. It is the most comprehensive, long-term plan related to nuclear weapons available from any government.
The key takeaway from this year’s stockpile plan is that very little has changed since last year. The overall vision has not changed, the schedule has not shifted, and the budget estimates, while modestly smaller for some projects, are still harrowingly large.
And that is a bad thing, because the NNSA’s plan has significant problems.
April 7, 2016 3:53 PM EDT
This Monday, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) released its 25-year plan for the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile. This document, the Fiscal Year 2017 Stockpile Stewardship and Management Plan, is the most comprehensive, long-term planning document related to nuclear weapons available from anywhere in the U.S. government. Or from any government, for that matter.
February 18, 2016 10:07 AM EDT
Last November, the biennial Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs met in Nagasaki, Japan in commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki during World War II. Pugwash was established in 1957 by a cadre of scientists who recognized their duty to address the moral implications of their technical work. Like UCS, the organization focuses on the intersection of science and policy, with the ultimate goal of abolishing nuclear weapons worldwide. The Pugwash meetings bring together senior governmental policy makers and nuclear experts from a variety of disciplines, spanning physics and engineering, international relations, and ethics, to provide guidance and a technically sound voice in international governance. Read more >
February 11, 2016 3:26 PM EDT
Weapons Program Budgets Up, Nonproliferation Budget Down
On February 9, the Obama administration unveiled the Fiscal Year 2017 budget request, its final annual submission to Congress of this kind. In recent years, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), the agency responsible for maintaining the country’s nuclear weapons and for helping to halt the spread of nuclear weapons, has seen its top-line budget increase even as government spending as a whole remains tightly constrained.