One Year Later: Nuclear Security Summit Is Mix of Progress and Challenges
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A new report released on the first anniversary of the 2010 Nuclear Security Summit finds that states are on track to meeting their commitments to improve the security of nuclear-weapons usable materials worldwide and reduce the risk of nuclear terrorism.
"States' progress in meeting their commitments shows the great potential of the summit process to move the nuclear security agenda forward and reduce the risk of nuclear terrorism," said Robert Golan-Vilella, a Herbert Scoville Jr. Peace Fellow at the Arms Control Association (ACA) and co-author of the report.
The report, The 2010 Nuclear Security Summit: A Status Update, was published jointly by ACA and the Partnership for Global Security (PGS)and supported by grants from Carnegie Corporation of New York.
The report concludes that approximately 60 percent of the national commitments made last year have been completed, and notable progress has been achieved on another 30 percent. A second summit is planned for Spring 2012 in Seoul to check on states' progress on implementing their commitments and to set the course for future efforts to secure weapons-usable nuclear materials.
"Despite the progress so far, it is important to recognize that the nuclear security challenge will not be solved once the 2010 commitments are completed," said Michelle Marchesano, a co-author and Senior Budget and Policy Analyst at PGS. "The next summit must acknowledge that nuclear material security is a long-term challenge that will require stable funding and a global commitment."
"A core achievement of the 2010 summit was that the 47 nations in attendance reached consensus that nuclear terrorism is among the top global security challenges and that strong nuclear material security measures are the most effective way to prevent it," said Sarah Williams, a co-author and Scoville Fellow at the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Examples of completed national commitments include:
o Chile sent all of its highly enriched uranium (HEU) to the United States.
o Kazakhstan secured enough HEU and plutonium to make 775 nuclear weapons.
o Russia ended its plutonium production and signed a plutonium disposition protocol with the United States.
Examples of progress made on national commitments include:
o China signed a memorandum of understanding with the United States to work together on establishing a nuclear security Center of Excellence in China.
o Ukraine removed over half of its HEU, putting it on track to meet its pledge to eliminate all of its HEU by the 2012 summit.
For the full report The 2010 Nuclear Security Summit: A Status Update click here.
For recommendations about the 2012 summit in Seoul, see "The Urgent Need for a Seoul Declaration: A Road Map for the 2012 Nuclear Security Summit and Beyond" by Kenneth Luongo in the April issue of Arms Control Today, which is available online here.
The Arms Control Association is an independent, membership-based organization dedicated to providing authoritative information and practical policy solutions to address the threats posed by the world's most dangerous weapons.
The Partnership for Global Security analyzes the convergence of the security, technological, and economic issues that are shaping the 21st century's global nuclear and biological challenges