U.S. and New Zealand Expand Partnership to Reduce Global Nuclear Threats
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced that New Zealand will expand its cooperation with NNSA to reduce nuclear threats around the world. Under an agreement signed with NNSA's Office of Global Threat Reduction (GTRI), New Zealand will contribute U.S. $400,000 to support GTRI’s efforts in Uzbekistan to secure and remove vulnerable nuclear material.
While this agreement marks the first contribution from New Zealand to NNSA’s GTRI program, New Zealand has provided financial support to five other nuclear nonproliferation programs with NNSA. Previously New Zealand supported NNSA’s efforts to shut down the last remaining weapons-grade plutonium producing reactor in Russia, as well as projects in Kazakhstan and Ukraine to combat nuclear smuggling. To date, New Zealand has provided more than $2,000,000 to support NNSA’s nonproliferation efforts around the world.
“We welcome New Zealand's generous and continued support," said Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Anne Harrington. "This contribution reinforces the cooperation between our countries to strengthen global security and prevent nuclear terrorism, while supporting President Obama’s pledge to lead a worldwide effort to secure vulnerable nuclear material around the world.”
“New Zealand is pleased to cooperate with the United States on such a critical global issue,” said New Zealand’s Senior Negotiator for Disarmament and Sherpa to the Nuclear Security Summit process Dr Joan Mosley. “Our support for the United States’ practical nuclear security initiatives underlines our deep commitment to the goal of securing vulnerable nuclear material, wherever it may be found.”
Financial and in-kind contributions from our international partners reflect a shared commitment to efforts aimed at securing vulnerable nuclear materials around the world, securing and disposing of dangerous nuclear and radiological materials, and preventing nuclear smuggling. In addition to New Zealand, NNSA has received support from Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, the Republic of Korea and the United Kingdom to pursue nonproliferation efforts around the world, including:
• More than $31 million to shut down the last remaining weapons-grade plutonium production reactors in Russia.
• Nearly $30 million to reduce and protect vulnerable nuclear and radiological materials located at civilian nuclear sites worldwide.
• More than $11 million to strengthen NNSA’s Second Line of Defense.
GTRI works to reduce and protect vulnerable nuclear and radiological material located at civilian sites worldwide. GTRI achieves permanent threat reduction through converting research reactors and isotope production facilities from HEU to LEU; removing and disposing of excess nuclear and radiological materials; and by protecting high priority nuclear and radiological materials from theft and sabotage.
Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science in the nation’s national security enterprise. NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, reliability, and performance of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear testing; reduces the global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad. Visit www.nnsa.energy.gov for more information.