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Exclusive: Obama Says Iran Must Halt Key Nuclear Work for at Least a Decade

Posted: Mar 3, 2015 17:30 CST

Iran must commit to a verifiable freeze of at least 10 years on sensitive nuclear activity for a landmark atomic deal to be reached, but the odds are still against sealing a final agreement, U.S. President Barack Obama told Reuters on Monday. Interviewed at the White House, Obama moved to dial back tensions over Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's planned speech to Congress on Tuesday opposing the Iran deal, saying it was a distraction that would not be "permanently destructive," to U...

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Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu Assails Iran Nuclear Talks in Speech to Congress

Posted: Mar 3, 2015 17:25 CST
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

In a speech that stirred political controversy in two countries, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Congress today that negotiations underway between Iran and the United States would “all but guarantee,” that Tehran gets nuclear weapons to the detriment of the entire world. “And lots of them,” he added in an appearance before a packed House chamber that drew loud applause from Republicans and a more restrained reaction from Democrats.


Transfer of Fukushima Clean-Up Waste Gets Go-Ahead

Posted: Mar 3, 2015 15:51 CST
World Nuclear News

The transfer of radioactive soil and waste generated from clean-up work following the March 2011 accident at the Fukushima Daiichi plant to a provisional storage site has been approved by the governor of Fukushima prefecture and the mayors of Futaba and Okuma. In August 2014, the then governor of Fukushima Prefecture Yuhei Sato approved a central government plan to construct an interim storage facility on land on the border between the neighbouring towns of Futaba and Okuma.

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Hungary Makes $14 Billion Power Plant Expansion Secret

Posted: Mar 3, 2015 15:51 CST
Wall Street Journal

Hungary’s parliament on Tuesday passed a law to classify for 30 years all data and contracts related to the planned €12.5 billion euro ($14 billion) expansion of the Paks nuclear power plant by Russia. The European Commission has been in talks with the Hungarian government on the circumstances of the agreement including an intergovernmental agreement between Russia and Hungary on financing the lion’s share, €10 billion of the development.

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Iran Calls Obama's 10-Year Nuclear Demand 'Unacceptable'

Posted: Mar 3, 2015 15:49 CST

Iran rejected on Tuesday as "unacceptable," U.S. President Barack Obama's demand that it freeze sensitive nuclear activities for at least 10 years but said it would continue talks on a deal, Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported. Iran laid out the position as the U.S. and Iranian foreign ministers met for a second day of negotiations and as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered a stinging critique of the agreement they are trying to hammer out.


Hacking Missile Defense: The Cyber Challenge to BMD

Posted: Mar 3, 2015 15:48 CST
Missle Defense Review (originally published Mar 1, 2015)

In the past two decades, the US ballistic missile defense program has tackled and overcome myriad technical challenges, engineering problems and political skeptics, and the notion and role of missile defense has now become normalized, accepted and essentially entrenched within US strategic and deterrence planning. Indeed, we have come a long way since the highly charged partisan debates and technological melee that characterized the 1980s and was embodied by Ronald Reagan’s Strategic Defense ...


North Korea Warns U.S. about Pre-Emptive Strike 'if Necessary'

Posted: Mar 3, 2015 15:48 CST

North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Su Yong said on Tuesday that his country had the power to deter an "ever-increasing nuclear threat," by the United States with a pre-emptive strike if necessary. His rare speech at the U.N.-backed Conference on Disarmament drew a rebuke from U.S. Ambassador Robert Wood, who urged Pyongyang to stop making threats and rid itself of nuclear weapons.

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When Iran Goes Nuclear

Posted: Mar 3, 2015 15:47 CST
The Washington Times (originally published Mar 2, 2015)

Our attention these days with regard to security is understandably riveted on the Islamic State, or ISIS, and its hideous decapitations, rapes and live immolations. We must deal with the Islamic State, but it is not the gravest threat we face. The Israelis are right — we should awaken to the fact that the coming of a nuclear Iran holds special dangers and requires particularly urgent attention. There are four driving reasons. First, the Mideast abounds in clashing religious beliefs, but there...


Bill Raises Canadian Nuclear Liability to $1bn

Posted: Mar 2, 2015 16:13 CST
Nuclear Engineering International

Canada's new Energy Safety and Security Act, which raises the absolute liability limit of nuclear operators from $75 million to $1 billion has received Royal Assent. The new Act will replace the 1976 Nuclear Liability Act. It will also enable Canada to implement the International Convention on Supplementary Compensation (CSC), which provides additional coverage for foreign damage caused by Canadian nuclear operators. The new legislation also raises the absolute liability for companies operati...


Russia Stepping Up Nuclear Exercises amid Events in Ukraine – NATO Deputy Chief

Posted: Mar 2, 2015 16:09 CST

Since the beginning of the conflict in Ukraine, Russia has stepped up nuclear exercises, NATO Deputy Secretary General Alexander Vershbow has said. "Russia has stepped up its nuclear exercises and integrated a nuclear component into conventional exercises. Russian bombers have been flying closer to Allied borders. And the Russian leadership has been boasting about the development of new nuclear weapons. Perhaps this is mostly rhetoric, but it is highly irresponsible," he said at the annual NA...


Wyoming Moves towards Self-Regulation

Posted: Mar 2, 2015 15:37 CST
World Nuclear News

The state of Wyoming will regulate its own uranium industry following legislation that allows it to apply to the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to become an Agreement State. State governor Matt Mead signed the act on 27 February four days after it received final approval from state legislators. The act authorizes the governor to seek an agreement with the NRC for the state to assume regulation of source materials from uranium mining and milling and associated wastes. It also sets out ...


Investment in Nuclear R&D Key to UK Success

Posted: Mar 2, 2015 15:37 CST
World Nuclear News

The UK can only be a competitive player in the global nuclear market if the government commits to a program of research and development (R&D) aimed at advanced reactor and fuel cycle technologies, as well as developing a skilled workforce, the Nuclear Innovation and Research Advisory Board (NIRAB) suggests.


Mark Fitzpatrick: North Korea Won’t Have 100 Nukes by 2020, but that’s No Comfort

Posted: Mar 2, 2015 15:36 CST

When analysts offer a range of possibilities about future nuclear and missile threats, the typical journalistic response is to hype the worst of the cases presented. Thus, the lead in most stories about a new report on growth in North Korea’s strategic arsenal focused on the dire prediction that by 2020 Pyongyang could have up to 100 nuclear warheads. Such a ten-fold increase over the IISS strategic dossier estimate in 2011 would put North Korea on par with current arsenal estimates for Israe...

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Kerry Is Pushing for Agreement in Iran Nuclear Talks

Posted: Mar 2, 2015 15:36 CST
New York Times

On Sunday, Secretary of State John Kerry flew to Switzerland to meet again with Mohammad Javad Zarif, the Iranian foreign minister who earned a Ph.D in international law and policy from the University of Denver, to try to negotiate the very accord that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel arrived in Washington that same day to denounce. As the deadline approaches for what could be one of the most important and divisive international agreements in decades, Mr. Kerry has become a driving...

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Obama to Veto Bill Letting Congress Weigh in On Iran Deal

Posted: Mar 2, 2015 15:35 CST
Reuters (originally published Mar 1, 2015)

President Barack Obama would veto a bill recently introduced in the U.S. Senate allowing Congress to weigh in on any deal the United States and other negotiating countries reach with Iran on its nuclear capabilities, the White House said on Saturday. "The president has been clear that now is not the time for Congress to pass additional legislation on Iran. If this bill is sent to the president, he will veto it," said Bernadette Meehan, a spokeswoman for the White House's National Security Co...

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Asia and the 2015 NPT Review Conference

Posted: Mar 2, 2015 15:35 CST
The Diplomat

Since its ratification in 1970, the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) has become one of the main pillars of the nuclear nonproliferation mechanism. In 2015, state parties to the NPT gather in a Review Conference (RevCon) to ensure that both the NPT provisions and the major nuclear proliferation challenges are being properly addressed. Given that seven of the world’s nine nuclear powers are in Asia, it is important to understand the main nuclear proliferation challenges that this continent...


Finland's Waste Fund Grows to €2.4 Billion

Posted: Feb 27, 2015 15:21 CST
World Nuclear News

Finnish nuclear operators had set aside a total of €2.38 billion ($2.67 billion) by the end of 2014 - up from €2.27 billion ($2.55 billion) by the end of 2013 and €2.16 billion ($2.42 billion) by the end of 2012 - for waste disposal and decommissioning activities, the country's Ministry for Employment and the Economy has reported. In Finland, nuclear power companies bear the costs of nuclear waste management, and the funds for that purpose are collected into the State Nuclear Waste Management...


Exelon Applauds Low Carbon Portfolio Standard as Lifeline for Illinois Fleet

Posted: Feb 27, 2015 15:20 CST
Nuclear Street

Legislation introduced in both the House and Senate in Springfield, Ill., on Thursday would give Exelon's six nuclear power plants in the state economic viability for up to six years, the company said in a news release. Exelon has said its nuclear fleet in the state was struggling due to economic headwinds that include stagnant demand in a post-recession era and stiff competition from natural gas and wind power, especially the former, which has seen dynamic priced changes since hyrdofracking ...

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America Readies Its New ‘Smart’ Nuke

Posted: Feb 27, 2015 15:20 CST
Medium (originally published Feb 26, 2015)

The U.S. Air Force is on the cusp of flight testing a new tail-kit assembly that will upend the old way of conducting tactical nuclear combat, should the United States ever enter a shooting match with a nuclear-armed state like Russia or China. We’re talking about an upgrade to the B61 thermonuclear bomb — the oldest nuclear gravity bomb in America’s stockpile. The Boeing-built guidance unit adds range and accuracy, turning it into a “smart,” nuke compatible with the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter...

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Korea Poses 'Serious' Nuclear Threat, US Says

Posted: Feb 27, 2015 15:19 CST
The Hill (originally published Feb 26, 2015)

North Korea's nuclear arsenal poses a "serious threat," to the United States and the East Asia region, according to a declassified U.S. intelligence report released Thursday. "Pyongyang is committed to developing a long-range, nuclear-armed missile that is capable of posing a direct threat to the United States," Director of National Intelligence James Clapper wrote in the annual worldwide threat assessment submitted to the Senate Armed Services Committee. The document notes that North Korea...



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Nuclear Security Science and Policy Institute
336 Zachry Engineering Center,Texas A&M University
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