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  • Los Alamos Study Group
    For the past two years if not longer this organization has repeatedly stressed that there appears to be no objective analysis of missions and associated nuclear facility requirements at LANL This lack of objective mission and facilities planning in the specific case of the CMR facility and its related safety issues is the main subject of Dr Eggenberger s letter We have also stressed that no convincing case apparently no case at all has been made for manufacturing more war reserve pits A Department of Defense DoD or Nuclear Weapons Council NWC order or memorandum requesting such manufacture would not in itself constitute a convincing case but to our knowledge there is no such order Here the Safety Board states NNSA has not offered any pit production mission need past the current short W88 campaign While it is not the Board s role to analyze the validity of such a programmatic need the total absence of one begs the question of whether NNSA is poised to assume unnecessary hazards at the CMR facility and other facilities associated with pit production Going farther than the Safety Board I believe NNSA is already incurring unnecessary and very significant hazards at LANL for the sake of pit production I am concerned that the stated lack of objective analysis is a major factor allowing the 2 6 billion Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement CMRR project to drift forward I believe it is necessary for Congress to request such a mission and facility analysis preferably by an independent third party and at a minimum to pause further CMRR project commitments especially Final Design of the proposed Nuclear Facility NF until that analysis can be provided I believe it likely that NNSA s internally generated programmatic pit production aspirations are clouding its view of necessary CMR

    Original URL path: http://lasg.org/CMRR_Cong_Exec_ltr.htm (2016-02-16)
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  • Los Alamos Study Group
    are declared inactive Pit production is also provocative to other countries and so carries significant national security costs without corresponding benefit however construed The U S is producing extra pits of relevant types all the time via the dismantlement process without additional cost delay risk or environmental impact beyond the dismantlement process itself A warm standby policy would allow the National Nuclear Security Administration NNSA and its contractors to focus on safety and much needed repairs rather than meeting artificial pit production goals which are meaningless from the nuclear deterrence perspective both now and for future decades Nuclear deterrence itself is questionable in many ways and is being newly questioned from many quarters The legal and practical imperatives for nuclear disarmament cannot be ignored not least because they bear directly on prospects for containing proliferation Regardless of the outcome of this debate warm standby is the best policy for pit production with or without stockpile reductions beyond those already planned 2 Halting investments in additional pit production related construction is the best policy Redirecting the very large and open ended capital investments budgeted for new manufacturing related construction at Los Alamos National Laboratory LANL would be best for the future of LANL Los Alamos County the U S and the world These capital investments are unnecessary from any perspective save that of increasing pit manufacturing capacity The flagship project in what would be an expanded LANL plutonium complex is the Nuclear Facility NF portion of the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement CMRR facility Pit production is the primary if not the sole true justification for this project The cost of the CMRR NF project is currently estimated at great than 2 billion total new plutonium related construction and associated demolition at LANL is estimated to exceed 3 billion These costs

    Original URL path: http://lasg.org/articles/Pit_Prod_Precis_Jun2008.htm (2016-02-16)
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  • Los Alamos Study Group
    later assuming the warhead or bomb in question is not retired first The key findings in this report are NNSA has not had consistent pit production goals not consistent over time and not consistent at the same time Since 2002 internally stated goals have sometimes differed from externally stated goals This is true for pits produced overall and for the sub category of war reserve pits that may become nuclear warheads NNSA has underestimated the costs of making and certifying pits GAO does not attempt to fully estimate these costs but indicates some of the elements its auditors believe should be included arriving at a ten year cost of roughly 6 billion These are some of the same cost elements by the way that the Study Group has previously suggested should be included GAO does not attempt to reconstruct the full history of pit production costs or estimates any full accounting would begin farther back in time in the early 1990s GAO identifies 7 construction projects that directly support pit production the same list as ours Table 1 here pdf with the addition of the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research CMR Upgrades Project which is already completed A recent Santa Fe New Mexican article badly misconstrued the purpose of the CMR Replacement CMRR project which is quite understandable given the confusing shall we say statements provided by key LANL employees regarding this project GAO has found that LANL will not be able to safely increase its pit manufacturing capacity for the foreseeable future as the Study Group has also concluded on a number of occasions for example here GAO s findings on the lack of clear production requirements echo some of those of the White House late last year in its guidance to NNSA on preparation of the FY2009 budget request emphasis added NNSA Funding for Nuclear Weapons Cores The DOE NNSA is requesting funding in FY 2009 for the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement Project This facility will be used to manufacture the central core of nuclear weapons known as the pit The DOE NNSA has assumed a future production rate of 50 80 pits per year at Los Alamos National Laboratory New Mexico consistent with their preferred alternative for complex transformation Currently there is no formal agreement between DOE and DOD on production requirements and thus no firm basis for setting a facility production capacity requirement This requirement is the major cost driver for the facility Therefore DOD and DOE should collaborate on an analysis that determines what level of production will be sufficient to meet requirements for pit replacement in the stockpile whether for existing designs or for the future Reliable Replacement Warhead RRW This analysis should also clarify the number of RRW variants that will be produced DOD and DOE should provide this analysis to OMB not later than July 2008 Study Group director Greg Mello What leaps out of these pages is great uncertainty among senior officials about pit production There are no clear answers as

    Original URL path: http://lasg.org/press/2008/PressReleaseJune2_2008.htm (2016-02-16)
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  • Ltr to Udall re: CMRR
    which is now the lead article on the on the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists web site The 50 year life cycle cost of the proposed CMRR TA 55 complex with associated security waste management cleanup and D D is on the order of 30 billion dollars The current and possibly the following budget cycles are pivotal to the CMRR Nuclear Facility NF which comprises about 90 of the total CMRR project cost My hope is that we can soon celebrate Congressman Udall s public commitment to work against appropriating funds for the CMRR NF for FY09 and in subsequent years Whether to produce plutonium warhead cores pits Placing pit production on warm standby would save billions of dollars and provide substantial diplomatic safety managerial and environmental benefits without compromising the reliability of the U S arsenal Pressing on with an expanding pit production program risks fiascoes in these same areas Producing pits via the dismantlement process is relatively instant in fact already underway has far more capacity costs nothing has no technical risk provides fully certified pits without process waivers of the precise kinds needed for stockpile systems has no environmental impact and has outstanding nonproliferation benefits Existing pit manufacturing facilities at Los Alamos National Laboratory LANL can be operated in a warm standby mode which will also have a variety of significant management safety and cost benefits The combined DoD NNSA usable pit inventory is very great If the current administration s stockpile plan as hawkish as any we are likely to see proceeds there would be approximately a 250 redundancy in pits of current types without any pit manufacturing whatsoever with greater than 100 redundancy for nearly every stockpile pit type My hope is that Congressman Udall will make a public commitment to work to place pit production

    Original URL path: http://lasg.org/UdallMar2008.htm (2016-02-16)
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  • Los Alamos Study Group
    office building estimated at 164 million is currently under construction the CMRR Nuclear Facility NF which initial estimates say will cost above 2 000 000 000 is still in preliminary design The project was initially sold to Congress at a cost of 500 million for both CMRR buildings less than one fourth of the current estimate for the CMRR NF alone 1 Total estimated cost of major LANL plutonium related construction projects now approach 3 billion The House of Representatives has zeroed funding for the CMRR project three times and heavily cut funding twice Horse trading late last year in the Omnibus Appropriations Bill funded the project at about 86 of the request Cobbles together some 40 M in funding for the Reliable Replacement Warhead RRW and closely allied design and advanced certification projects despite congressional direction to end the RRW project 7 weeks ago Congress can be faulted for providing vague direction and creating a redundant if not illogical budget line for FY2008 Advanced Certification but once again National Nuclear Security Administration NNSA has exploited such an opening for its own purposes The NNSA which administers the nation s nuclear weapons program indicated a few weeks ago it would attempt to continue the RRW despite congressional direction and today has made good on that promise NNSA is also proceeding with manufacturing capacity for RRW components in other program and construction budget lines Essentially ignores congressional direction to lay a foundation of a new nuclear policy and strategic posture prior to proceeding with significant new infrastructure and programmatic commitments Reveals in subtle ways NNSA s commitment to innovation in the nuclear stockpile For example for the first time NNSA says it may in the future change pits as it services and upgrades weapons in its Life Extension Programs see p

    Original URL path: http://lasg.org/press/2008/PressReleaseFeb4_2008.htm (2016-02-16)
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  • Los Alamos Study Group
    occasioned by Study Group analysis publicity and litigation Proposed near term pit production capacity was downgraded by a factor of five from 50 pits per year to 10 Thus it has not been easy for LANL to make even this first one pit and there is no assurance that production will long continue This year the House Appropriations Committee recommends cutting the LANL pit production budget roughly in half In addition serious infrastructure and safety issues remain unresolved see http www lasg org PU talking points1 htm A cursory addition of pit production program costs over the period from 1995 2007 gives a total cost of at least 3 0 billion in constant 2007 dollars If attributable construction costs and pre 1995 costs were included the total would be higher The Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board DNFSB estimates that LANL s nuclear construction projects underway and planned for completion by 2014 now total approximately 2 billion 2 Should these construction projects be funded and built assuming no cost overruns 3 and assuming current levels of operational spending total expenses for building and starting up a plutonium pit factory at LANL would be at least 6 7 B not counting ancillary costs for security waste management operations and other required expenses These costs will be largely taken from by other LANL programs This 6 B is considerably more than the estimated costs of the recently proposed Modern Pit Facility The final result of it all at LANL should the work ever be completed would be a collage of facilities centered on what will be by 2014 a 36 year old facility Building PF 4 that lacks modern safety e g safety class ventilation and security features such as underground or at least bermed construction No thorough audit of past pit production expenses or of future estimated costs has been conducted None but the most cursory public justification for pit production has ever been offered This is especially important given that LANL Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories and independent scientists now know that existing pits which number approximately 23 000 will last for at least a century from their original manufacture Many published analyses of these and related issues are available from the Los Alamos Study Group at www lasg org Most of the policy issues are briefly summarized at http www lasg org pit prod flyer htm and at http www lasg org PU talking points1 htm the latter discussion includes a referenced discussion of safety issues A compendium of press articles on the subject is available at http www lasg org Pit Prod htm The implications of these issues for New Mexico together with a sketch of a normative program for LANL can be found at http www lasg org NM labs future pdf 4 2 M For the past three years in particular the Study Group has led a statewide campaign against pit production A list of participating organizations businesses and local governments can be found at http www lasg

    Original URL path: http://lasg.org/press/2007/PressReleaseJul02_2007.htm (2016-02-16)
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  • pit production condensed talking points
    warhead production less likely Failure to resume production would realistically lower the status of the nuclear weapons enterprise in the U S reducing the legitimacy and appeal of an aggressive nuclear posture and allowing decisionmakers time and reason to disinvest in nuclear weapons In theory LANL can make pits now and is planning to do so this year LANL may or may not be able to do so in actual practice And it can only do so at a low rate by breaking internal safety rules driving a reluctant workforce and building work arounds to temporarily fix various infrastructure deficiencies Key members of Congress already oppose adding new production capacity at LANL Last month construction of the larger of two new pit production buildings appears to have been deferred for a year pending other decisions If new production capacity is acquired by LANL through new construction gradual expansion of existing capacity or both there would be serious consequences Preventing proliferation and arms races would be much harder Look o More production capacity if acquired would be used indeed must be used to be proven Pit production would begin in earnest and overall U S warhead manufacture would then resume with very serious ramifications worldwide o The pits made would very likely be for a new generation of warheads possibly including disclosed or undisclosed small builds of special weapons There is little or no interest in building extra copies of warheads slated for dismantlement o Since these new weapons would be untested the U S would be unlikely to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty CTBT In that case few if any other key states would ratify and the CTBT would not enter into force o Adding renewed U S warhead design and production to many other powerful negative factors already present would make it likely that all efforts by all parties to strengthen the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty NPT would fail further weakening restraint over nuclear anarchy o Making a new generation of U S warheads and bombs would help legitimate nuclear weapons worldwide and stimulate a variety of responsive investments in other countries all driven or protected by U S hypocrisy Fresh U S commitments to nuclear weapons would poison restraint and empower hard liners worldwide in a complex manner very hard to control o Russia in particular would continue to modernize and invest in its nuclear forces for this and other potent reasons Pit production would have big implications for New Mexico some new some continuing o LANL would become primarily a production site as the exigencies of pit production take over lab funding and culture Its reputation would reflect that Even without accidents a plutonium identity and reputation would come to be shared to some extent throughout the Santa Fe metropolitan area and Northern New Mexico Already the Santa Fe metro area is home to a growing unregulated nuclear waste dump by far the largest in New Mexico and the largest in a four state area Most of

    Original URL path: http://lasg.org/pit_prod_flyer.htm (2016-02-16)
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  • PU pit production talking points, 24 Feb 2007
    in PF 4 are not standard or robust A vault contamination incident occurred in December 2005 when a friction lidded canister secured only by tape opened due to internal pressure 20 LANL s preliminary FY07 nuclear infrastructure and operations budget is less than it was in FY06 and is about 1 3 of what LANL estimates is needed for safety Overall NNSA appears to emphasize mission over infrastructure at LANL and is delaying and scaling back reinvestment in ventilation and fire safety in PF 4 and other buildings 21 As the WSR for 9 15 06 put it T he next test is how NNSA and the new LANE management reconcile the budget issues and specifically how they evaluate the mission vs infrastructure trade offs It is unclear how NNSA and LANL could achieve their long term nuclear mission objectives without starting in FY 07 to substantively address longstanding issues with infrastructure and safety programs NNSA apparently needs to revisit the timing of and the scale of investment in the TA 55 Reinvestment Project at LANL Project 08 D 804 relative to this facility s proposed new missions pit production and new campaigns in MOX preparation and Pu 238 heat sources A new start in FY08 physical construction is not supposed to be complete until the 4 th quarter of 2011 The project is expected to cost a total of 28 6 million M one third of the previous cost estimate of 77 5 M 22 LANL lacks adequate fire fighting capability and lacks a long term contract for same with Los Alamos County 23 As recently 2 1 07 the DNFSB wrote The lack of a long term contract with Los Alamos County has impeded improvement of fire response capabilities since 1997 This concern is heightened since the pre contractual cost agreement was recently allowed to lapse emphasis added LANL lacks adequate on site transportation standards and plans 24 LANL lacks numerous up to date safety bases documents governing the safe operation of its nuclear facilities 25 LANL uses a mix of subcontractors and its own staff to write review and update these safety bases increasing the likelihood that staff are not educated regarding them LANL extensively carries unresolved safety questions USQs and many other complex procedural patches without closure in order to get around DOE orders and applicable federal law It is not too much to say that LANL has a long standing and strong resistance to rules a cultural quality that is antithetical to the goal of high reliability in safety performance 26 LANL lacks a industry standard criticality safety program for its 564 fissile materials operations and will take 2 3 years to acquire one 27 LANL still has 20 000 or more drums of TRU waste stored above ground in tents at TA 54 one mile upwind from the community of White Rock Many thousands of other drums are still temporarily buried at TA 54 and further thousands of additional drums are slated to arrive at TA 54 for above ground storage adding up to about 50 000 drums now or soon to be stored above ground at TA 54 NNSA believes a large earthquake would or could cause drums containing about one fourth of the current above ground TA 54 radioactivity to rupture NNSA has analyzed roughly 18 accident scenarios in which the maximum exposed offsite individual MEOI could receive doses committed effective dose equivalent CEDE exceeding 100 rems 28 The predicted hazard from accidents at TA 55 is comparable The DNFSB offers no estimate of the possible damage that would result from terrorist and sabotage scenarios at either site sabotage scenarios are a particularly thorny problem and cannot be fully eliminated by any personnel reliability program Stress and its concomitants are serious problems at LANL There is still no clear path forward for large contaminated items like gloveboxes of which about 300 are now stored at TA 54 29 T here is no clear plan for replacing equipment and reconfiguring rooms in PF 4 to increase pit production capacity as planned while safely making pits at the same time Currently 30 60 contaminated gloveboxes need removal It can take up to a year to remove one 30 Federal oversight at LANL is declining in quantity and quality due to low budgets personnel transfers and substitution of a contractor self monitoring system for federal oversight 31 32 Whistleblowers allege that LANL is widely failing to meet standards for quality assurance and safety We believe problem awareness reporting and response may be suppressed to meet production incentives and retain contracts We note that incident reports are not publicly available virtually assuring long term lack of accountability Some LANL facilities are relatively vulnerable to attack from the ground most are vulnerable from the air S eismic issues at LANL are far from resolved 33 Vertical accelerations exceeding 1 gravity have been predicted on the Pajarito Fault Zone 34 Structural integrity of tuff across the site is uncertain The LANL Probabilistic Seismic Hazard Assessment PHSA has been repeatedly delayed existing reports can be difficult to get We believe the CMRR EIS seismic analysis underestimates the probability of magnitude 7 earthquakes by a factor of 27 based on subsequent LANL research presented under the auspices of the Los Alamos Geological Society 35 Despite these unresolved problems LANL has large new near term Pu missions competing for scarce space resources and management attention in PF 4 including Preparation of 80 kg yr of Pu oxide feedstock for MOX startup at the Savannah River Site SRS A new 9 kg yr Pu 238 heat source campaign 36 and of course Pit production LANL aims to demonstrate a surge level of 2 trial pits month this quarter or next to initiate actual production in early FY08 and to complete stockpile production of 70 changed to 40 in the FY08 Congressional Budget Request 37 W88 pits by FY09 changed to FY2010 in the same document after which re tooling for the proposed but not authorized or funded Reliable Replacement Warhead RRW is slated to begin 38 Concluding remarks about LANL safety culture In the summer of 1953 two Los Alamos guards wrote a letter to President Eisenhower complaining about a variety of problems at Los Alamos L arge amounts of government property are being stolen or used illegally because this is one of the few government installations that does not allow searching of vehicles leaving the project This letter sounds as if it were written last year not 54 years ago The letter mentioned other problems including low morale within the security forces questionable disbursement of government money approval of inferior construction and the immorality of many of the employees on the Hill 39 The two whistleblowers were fired The moral of this little vignette which could be amplified with many other stories is that the problems at Los Alamos run very deep After all that has been said by safety professionals cognizant officials and oversight committees regarding LANL much more remains Los Alamos was purposely built in an isolated place In 64 years the nature of that isolation has changed Today thousands of commuters head up The Hill daily from Santa Fe and Rio Arriba counties In fact slightly more LANL employees live in these counties than in Los Alamos itself Los Alamos nevertheless remains socially economically politically and morally isolated from the communities around it In some ways this isolation is growing right along with income disparities in the vicinity in the state and in the country as a whole LANL is remote as well from other high technology employers and first rate universities which has also been a factor in creating its particular management culture quite different from Livermore s Attempting to create a scientific Shangri La in an isolated location a goal of Oppenheimer s has had cultural consequences One such consequence is management inbreeding The following testimony is not at all atypical I m board certified in safety and industrial hygiene I provided safety services from Jakarta to Germany up in the Arctic and last year I was in Baghdad on a volunteer mission to support the Army I ve worked at Hanford Rocky Flats I ve been at Lawrence Livermore and recently I spent five 11 years at the Los Alamos National Laboratory I find my experience at Los Alamos was a bit disturbing there is a culture there that s problematic And that I had hoped with the transition of the contract that that would go away I don t believe it has I refer to it as managerial inbreeding if you will There are certain avenues of management that is very in my opinion very self serving I brought to light some problems over a period of months requesting safety standards requesting intervention for fundamental safety equipment from my team And it was ignored and it was ignored and it was ignored It made its way I believe to Pete Nanos the director and they fixed it It reached the right level It was corrected quickly But as a result of that you know I found myself kind of shoved off in the corner not given assignments et cetera I will spare you the details I decided to leave And I paid a bit of a price for that as did my family The message I would like to bring and incidentally I brought these issues to bear to NNSA and to their credit they took them seriously and they required Los Alamos to do an investigation which they are now doing But the point being they still are able to work in a vacuum It s very difficult to get third party intervention and attention for even baseline needs in some cases I find the thought of awarding Los Alamos in particular a huge additional responsibility without additional accountability to be very concerning and very troublesome I think I would request that NNSA take a look at that there are no contractual loopholes which I ran into Los Alamos gets to do investigation not DOE There needs to be some means of evaluating what s going on internally and stepping in and correcting it I believe DOE tries to do that I believe they are also shut out and there s a price to pay for questioning the authority at Los Alamos 40 Today LANL and its adjacent community of wealthy scientists 41 live very near impoverished communities which have among the very worst levels of drug related crime and social problems in the U S Educational and career opportunities for the children of these two communities could hardly be more divergent While relations between the two communities are complex they certainly include widespread resentment in the Espanola Valley There is little mission buy in in Espanola to put it mildly and no love affair with national security Security simply means something quite different to poor families a few miles from Los Alamos than it does to NNSA 42 Espanola Mayor Joseph Maestas has recently alluded to some of these disjunctions Over 63 years ago the Los Alamos National Laboratory referred to as the Lab was established with many Northern New Mexico residents in the immediate area serving as employees In the beginning with the Manhattan Project only the uneducated local residents were selected for menial jobs in the name of national security Over the years several generations of these residents have helped to make the Lab what it is today even at the expense of their own health resulting from exposure to job related health risks Some past employees have died of work related illnesses before they or their families could benefit from Federal government worker health compensation programs The economic impacts of the lab outside of Los Alamos County have not been realized Regional community based initiatives associated with the Lab contract have not been very effective Despite the presence of the Lab and the billions of dollars from its budgets the socioeconomic disparities that exist within the Lab s workforce area remain substantial and are expected to worsen 43 Stark disjunctions like this lead to all kinds of problems and tensions To sum up a longer argument LANL cannot be healed until the region is healed 44 LANL is also directly adjacent to tony Santa Fe which does not support pit production politically or socially and never has Literally hundreds of public gatherings have been held in Santa Fe and its environs to discuss debate testify against or protest LANL activities especially waste disposal and plutonium pit production 45 Not one attendee at the August 2006 public hearings regarding the draft Site Wide Environmental Impact Statement SWEIS for continued operation of LANL spoke in favor of even retaining a nuclear deterrent let alone manufacturing plutonium pits at LANL including attendees at the Los Alamos meeting Support for pit production in Los Alamos itself is weak A smattering of public figures in Los Alamos has openly questioned the wisdom of bringing this mission to LANL even during recent political races These public figures include the Republican candidate for Congress a Republican member of the County Council and a recently elected school board member It is increasingly understood in the community that pit production is harming LANL as a scientific laboratory The Los Alamos County Manager has written NNSA questioning why it is necessary to continue disposal of radioactive waste in the County which hosts the largest disposal site in the states of New Mexico Texas Colorado and Arizona Tensions over LANL physical security measures have resulted in County litigation against the DOE and in dozens of acrimonious public meetings which have pitted Los Alamos business and political leaders against NNSA All these disharmonies and others not mentioned strongly affect prospects for a high reliability safety culture at LANL because to achieve such a culture people must believe and invest in their jobs at the very minimum Morale at LANL is low staff members are resigning both voluntarily and possibly soon involuntarily as budgets fall and funds are transferred to pit production related investments in buildings equipment and security as well as to corporate operating fees and related contract costs Workplace cynicism is high perhaps as high as it has ever been Uncertainty about the future is widespread Many staff never understood that they were being recruited to work at and live near what increasingly looks and feels like a weapons production facility There is a widespread crisis of self understanding as this truth among others becomes clear and there is personal disinvestment Psychological distancing has been a reality at Los Alamos for decades but it is intensified at the present historical moment No matter what NNSA does or does not do in Los Alamos the world is changing rapidly and dramatically to a new security paradigm that does not provide much social or intellectual support for personal investment in new weapons of mass destruction WMD We all now face environmental threats that are nothing short of apocalyptic and a good many scientists at LANL know this Furthermore LANL scientists know even if NNSA does not quite yet appreciate that the Cold War is over and the pits made at Rocky Flats will last longer than any of us will live Thus the entire effort can easily acquire the quality of a dangerous if personally lucrative farce Creation of a high reliability culture no doubt requires at a minimum a shared perception of social support and legitimacy for the enterprise itself This is now gone Management efforts to replace genuine social legitimacy with empty slogans and various forms of worker indoctrination are failing and exacerbating the problem D There are other rationales and motives for resuming pit production Pit production will exercise the whole warhead complex Exercising finding something to do for the warhead complex is however not an end in itself It serves other ends and stands or falls with them We should reject this justification on plain logical grounds Pit production will create a responsive infrastructure presumably by providing programs new and renewed facilities stable if not increased funding a sense of purpose and direction and renewed political and social legitimacy The theory advanced in the 2002 Nuclear Posture Review that a responsive infrastructure provides deterrent value in itself must be firmly rejected The idea that the smooth operation of a nuclear production complex independent of warheads produced will defeat enemies deter adversaries dissuade competitors and assure allies is absurd on its face It s equivalent to saying that spending money creates security Once the benefits of producing new warheads are clearly articulated if that is possible these benefits must be evaluated in relation to costs financial environmental security international and moral It is the difficulty embarrassment and real security costs of articulating the benefits of making new warheads that leads to an attempt to define security in terms of investment per se Here again the warhead enterprise is not the means but the end We support it in order to support it security is supposedly the fortunate byproduct Pit production will provide active emergency pit production capability in the event of the relatively sudden failure of one or more classes of deployed pits The recent JASON review has now removed this rationale Even if failure were to occur in one type of pit against all expert prediction there would no lack of nuclear deterrent since we have other warheads and bombs plus reserve pits as noted above If this impossible scenario did occur LANL production could not provide enough capacity to fix the problem anyway The current policy is to retain at least two kinds of warheads for each of four delivery modes ICBMs SLBMs bombers and cruise missiles 46 If the role of nuclear weapons were what most people believe it to be an existential or retaliatory deterrent there would be no need for such redundancy 47 Loss of function in any kind of nuclear explosive package NEP

    Original URL path: http://lasg.org/PU_talking_points1.htm (2016-02-16)
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