Among the general craziness of the 2016 presidential campaign, you can be forgiven if you missed one particular crazy piece of information: the president of the United States currently has the authority to order the launch of nuclear weapons without input from anyone. This has actually been the case for decades, but the campaign brought it to the attention of the general public, many of whom were hearing it for the first time and were understandably surprised, and even somewhat alarmed, at the idea. Read more >
April 18, 2017 4:04 PM EDT
March 16, 2017 3:04 PM EDT
U.S. military leaders continue to strongly support New START, the arms control treaty between the United States and Russia that limits each country to no more than 1,550 deployed, long-range nuclear weapons by 2018.
The problem is that President Donald Trump is apparently unwilling to listen to their sage advice. Read more >
December 7, 2016 9:53 AM EDT
During the summer and fall, reports appeared that President Obama was considering actions he could take to make a major impact on U.S. nuclear weapons policy before leaving office in January. While the situation has clearly changed since Trump became the president-elect, this still does not mean that Obama’s hands are completely tied. Read more >
October 4, 2016 6:00 AM EDT
Disaster by Design/ Safety by Intent #52
Safety by Intent
The discovery of significant corrosion to the reactor vessel head at the Davis-Besse nuclear plant in Ohio gave the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) a figurative black eye. On the same day in April 2002 that the NRC announced it rated Davis-Besse one of the top performing nuclear plants in the country, the agency reported that the corrosion spanning several years at the plant had compromised safety margins more than any event since the Three Mile Island accident in March 1979.
The well-deserved black eye overshadowed what had been stellar performance by a regulator with eyes wide open seeing a safety problem and swiftly acting to effectively resolve it in a timely manner. Prior commentaries have chronicled the NRC’s shortcomings. This commentary covers the history before the NRC snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. Read more >
September 27, 2016 12:02 PM EDT
Today marks the 25th anniversary of the start of the most remarkable and rapid changes ever made in U.S. and Soviet/Russian nuclear posture and policy. Read more >