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Calls to Use Yucca Mountain as a Nuclear Waste Site, Now Deemed Safe

Posted: Oct 17, 2014 16:48 CST
New York Times

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission on Thursday released a long-delayed report on the suitability of Yucca Mountain as a disposal spot for nuclear waste, finding that the design met the commission’s requirements, laying the groundwork to restart the project if control of the Senate changes hands in the elections next month. At the Bipartisan Policy Center, a nonprofit Washington group, Timothy Frazier, a former Energy Department official who heads the nuclear waste program there, said “it makes...

 
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U.S. Nonproliferation Policy Is an Invisible Success Story

Posted: Oct 17, 2014 16:45 CST
Washington Post

Fifty years ago today, the People’s Republic of China conducted its first nuclear test. This caused great alarm among American policymakers, who feared that an emboldened China would use its nuclear arsenal to promote revolution abroad and draw regional states into its political orbit. U.S. officials were also acutely concerned that the Chinese test would unleash a kind of nuclear “domino effect,” with countries like India, Japan, Australia, Indonesia, and Taiwan developing their own nuclear...

 

Ukraine's Regulatory Chief Ousted

Posted: Oct 17, 2014 15:36 CST
World Nuclear News

Ukraine dismissed 39 high-ranking officials yesterday as a new law on "power purification," came into effect. According to local newspaper Kyiv Post, the list includes the first deputy head of Ukraine's State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate (SNRI), Mikhail Gashev. Gashev was critical of Westinghouse-made nuclear fuel assemblies used in Ukrainian reactors, claiming that they were defective. Westinghouse maintained that errors had been made during fuel loading.

 
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When the Ayatollah Said No to Nukes

Posted: Oct 17, 2014 15:35 CST
Foreign Policy (originally published Oct 16, 2014)

The nuclear negotiations between six world powers and Iran, which are now nearing their November deadline, remain deadlocked over U.S. demands that Iran dismantle the bulk of its capacity to enrich uranium. The demand is based on the suspicion that Iran has worked secretly to develop nuclear weapons in the past and can't be trusted not to do so again. Iran argues that it has rejected nuclear weapons as incompatible with Islam and cites a fatwa of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei as proof. American...

 
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India Successfully Test-Fires Nuclear Capable Cruise Missile Nirbhay

Posted: Oct 17, 2014 15:34 CST
NDTV

India today successfully test-fired its potent nuclear-capable cruise missile 'Nirbhay', a state-of-the-art missile developed by the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO). The test was conducted from the Integrated Missile Test Range in Chandipur, Odisha, days after Cyclone Hudhud hit the state's coastal region.

 
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Reading between the Red Lines: An Anatomy of Iran's Eleventh-Hour Nuclear Negotiating Strategy

Posted: Oct 17, 2014 15:34 CST
Brookings Institution (originally published Oct 16, 2014)

After yet another round of negotiations on the Iranian nuclear issue this week in Vienna, Tehran is simultaneously reinforcing its red lines while raising expectations that a final agreement remains within reach. While these might sound like mixed messages, in fact they are part of a sophisticated, multi-prong strategy aimed at pressuring Washington and its negotiating partners to accede to Tehran’s stipulations for a deal. Below, I have outlined the elements of Iran's eleventh-hour approach,...

 

Vietnam Consults Lightbridge on Research Reactor

Posted: Oct 17, 2014 15:33 CST
World Nuclear News

US-based Lightbridge Corp has extended its nuclear cooperation with Vietnam by agreeing to offer consultancy services for setting up a nuclear research Centre, including a research reactor, in the country. The company announced today that it had signed two separate agreements with the Vietnam Atomic Energy Institute (VinAtom) and Power Engineering Consulting Joint Stock Company 1 (PECC1).

 
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New York Saw 875% Higher Energy Prices Last Winter--A Nuclear Controversy

Posted: Oct 16, 2014 15:29 CST
Motley Fool (originally published Oct 15, 2014)

The state of New York gets about a third of its electricity from nuclear power plants. That's a big slice of the power pie, but there have been rumblings from nuclear opponents that these plants should be closed. And as the plants have aged, the push for closure has gained steam. Not only would that pose a problem for the state's power reliability, but it would also be a huge setback on the environmental front.

 

The Very Small Islamic State WMD Threat

Posted: Oct 16, 2014 15:28 CST
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (originally published Oct 15, 2014)

Late last month British Home Secretary Theresa May, who is responsible for immigration and policing under Prime Minister David Cameron, alarmed many citizens when she warned that the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) could “acquire chemical, biological, or even nuclear weapons to attack us.” Joseph Cirincione, president of the global-security-focused Ploughshares Fund, warned that “the risk of a terrorist attack using nuclear or chemical weapons has just gone up.” And a little later Brit...

 
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Can Iran Transparency overcome Covert Nuclear Past?

Posted: Oct 16, 2014 15:27 CST
Al-Monitor (originally published Oct 15, 2014)

A recurrent issue regarding Iran’s nuclear programs is how to address its history of covert nuclear activities, including efforts to develop nuclear weapons. Earlier this month, 354 members of US Congress sent Secretary of State John Kerry a letter warning that “Iran’s willingness to fully reveal all aspects of its nuclear program is a fundamental test of Iran’s intention to uphold a comprehensive agreement.”

 
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How Presidents Arm and Disarm

Posted: Oct 16, 2014 15:15 CST
FAS Strategic Security Blog (originally published Oct 15, 2014)

It’s a funny thing: the administrations that talk the most about reducing nuclear weapons tend to reduce the least. Analysis of the history of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile shows that the Obama administration so far has had the least effect on the size of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile of any of the post-Cold War presidencies. In fact, in terms of warhead numbers, the Obama administration so far has cut the least warheads from the stockpile of any administration ever.

 

Could China’s Nuclear Strategy Evolve?

Posted: Oct 16, 2014 15:10 CST
The Diplomat

Fifty years ago, at 7:00 GMT on October 16, 1964, China exploded its first nuclear device at the Lop Nur test site, becoming the fifth official member of the nuclear club after the U.S., the Soviet Union, the U.K. and France. This anniversary is an occasion to take stock of fifty years of Chinese nuclear strategy and reflect on its potential evolution in light of the ongoing modernization of the country’s nuclear arsenal. Overall, the analyst is faced with the problem of peering through the f...

 
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Finnish, Indian Regulators to Cooperate

Posted: Oct 16, 2014 15:01 CST
World Nuclear News

The Finnish and Indian nuclear regulators are to exchange information following the signing of a cooperation agreement between the two countries. During a state visit by Indian president Pranab Mukherjee to Finland, an agreement was signed on 15 October between the Finnish radiation and safety authority, Stuk, and India's Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB).

 

Legal Issues for Russian Radioactive Waste

Posted: Oct 16, 2014 15:00 CST
World Nuclear News

Russia's national operator for radioactive waste management (NO RAO) has highlighted the main problems it faces in siting disposal facilities. These problems include a lack of common rules on resolving property disputes, difficulty in managing individual and local authority responsibilities, and a need for financing mechanisms to support municipalities in the areas where such facilities are to be located.

 
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Has Lockheed Martin Really Made a Breakthrough in Nuclear Fusion Technology?

Posted: Oct 16, 2014 15:00 CST
The Guardian

Scientists have responded with skepticism to the announcement of a breakthrough in nuclear fusion by Lockheed Martin. The arms manufacturer announced on Wednesday that it was “working on a new compact fusion reactor (CFR) that can be developed and deployed in as little as 10 years”. But Lockheed’s four paragraph press release and accompanying video are heavy on hyperbole and light on detail.

 

Does it Matter if Iran Developed Nuclear Weapons at Parchin?

Posted: Oct 15, 2014 15:29 CST
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (originally published Oct 13, 2014)

Last week, an explosion at the Iranian military complex known as Parchin drew even more attention to the site, already one of the most contentious in the country’s nuclear dossier. Since satellite imagery of the October 5 blast surfaced on the Internet, it has been pored over by non-proliferation experts and provoked ill-informed analysis by Iran hawks. Adding to the sense of urgency, the event occurred as Tehran and its six international negotiating partners strive to meet the November 24 de...

 
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U.S. Says No Talk Now about Extending Iran Nuclear Negotiations

Posted: Oct 15, 2014 15:29 CST
Reuters

A senior U.S. official said on Wednesday a deal on Iran's nuclear program was still possible by late next month and there were no talks now about extending the deadline, after Tehran and Moscow indicated more time may be needed. Speaking before a meeting between the U.S., Iranian and European Union foreign ministers, the State Department official said "we're working on creative ways to give us all of the assurances we need" that Iran will not develop nuclear weapons.

 

An Iran Nuclear Deal Is There for the Taking

Posted: Oct 15, 2014 15:28 CST
National Interest

Iranian and American nuclear negotiators moved closer to a comprehensive agreement in their recent round of talks. To meet the November 24 deadline, the P5+1 and Iran must hammer out solutions where serious differences remain. Both sides are warning that if the other side does not make more concessions soon, the negotiations will fail. This is to be expected in the final phase of tough diplomacy. The time is rapidly approaching when the leaders in Tehran and Washington must decide on the deal.

 

Hypersonic Weapons Could Create New Arms Race

Posted: Oct 15, 2014 15:28 CST
Stars and Stripes (originally published Oct 14, 2014)

With nuclear technology the adage that “you can’t put the genie back in the bottle,” is widely used. What if we are standing at the threshold of a technology that we could keep in the bottle before it runs amok in the international system? The recent failure of the U.S. Advanced Hypersonic Weapon test on the heels of an unsuccessful Chinese test of their WU-14 vehicle provides the world a chance to reflect on this technology and its possible strategic implications. Currently Russia, China, th...

 

Nuclear Window Project Gathers Pace

Posted: Oct 15, 2014 15:27 CST
World Nuclear News

Russia's Rosatom and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) have announced milestone dates for two projects in their so-called Nuclear Window program. The announcement followed a meeting in Moscow on 8 October between Rosatom officials and the bank's joint secretariat. Nuclear Window is part of the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership (NDEP), which originates from the European Union's Northern Dimension Initiative to promote cooperation between countries of the Ba...

 

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