P. Nelson, T.V.K. Woddi and W.S. Charlton,
"A Framework for Analysis of the Weapons Implications of the U.S.-India Nuclear Accord,"
NSSPI report: NSSPI-07-010.
India's options are analyzed, in terms of the feasible region
available in "uranium-policy space" (amounts of indigenous uranium
employed to produce each of weapons-grade and reactor-grade
plutonium). This approach is employed to evaluate, via several
different metrics, the "immediate future" impact of the proposed
cooperation, relative to the status quo, and to other "baseline
scenarios." Conclusions are that the cooperation benefits nuclear
power production in India, while assessments of its potential
contribution to proliferation depend sensitively on choice of
metric, baseline scenario, and hypothesis regarding production of
indigenous uranium. A sufficiently large increase in the historic
rate of production of indigenous uranium could lead to an "excess,"
relative to needs for energy production, which could be used for
weapons; however, under the status quo India could accomplish much
the same, by decommissioning its older reactors. Relative to
several metrics of the potential for vertical proliferation, the
cooperation is shown to have rather marginal impact, as compared to
the situation at the time of the initial Joint Statement
envisioning the cooperation.
Associated Project(s):Technical Analyses of the U.S.-India Nuclear Accord