Nonproliferation and Threat Reduction Assistance: U.S. Programs in the Former Soviet Union
Nonproliferation and Threat Reduction Assistance:
U.S. Programs in the Former Soviet Union
Congress passed the Nunn-Lugar amendment, authorizing U.S. threat reduction
assistance to the former Soviet Union, in November 1991, after a failed coup in
Moscow and the disintegration of the Soviet Union raised concerns about the safety
and security of Soviet nuclear weapons. The annual program has grown from $400
million in the DOD budget around $1.1 billion across three agencies — DOD, DOE,
and the State Department. It has also evolved from an emergency response to
impending chaos in the Soviet Union, to a more comprehensive threat reduction and
nonproliferation effort, to a broader program seeking to keep nuclear, chemical, and
biological weapons from leaking out of the former Soviet Union and into the hands
of rogue nations or terrorist groups.
The Department of Defense manages the Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR)
Program, which provides Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan with assistance
in transporting, storing, and dismantling nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons.
U.S. assistance has helped these nations eliminate the delivery systems for nuclear
weapons under the START I Treaty, secure weapons storage areas, construct a
storage facility for nuclear materials removed from weapons, construct a destruction
facility for chemical weapons, and secure biological weapons materials.
The State Department manages the International Science and Technology
Centers in Moscow and Kiev. These centers provide research grants to scientists and
engineers so that they will not sell their knowledge to other nations or terrorist
groups. The State Department has also provided assistance with export and border
control programs in the former Soviet states. The Department of Energy manages
programs that seek to improve the security of nuclear materials at civilian, naval, and
nuclear weapons complex facilities. It also funds programs that help nuclear
scientists and engineers find employment in commercial enterprises. DOE is also
helping Russia dispose of plutonium removed from nuclear weapons and shut-down
its remaining plutonium-producing reactors by replacing them with fossil-fuel plants.
Analysts have debated numerous issues related to U.S. nonproliferation and
threat reduction assistance. These include questions about the coordination of and
priority given to these programs in the U.S. government, questions about Russia’s
willingness to provide the United States with access to its weapons facilities,
questions about the President’s ability to waive certification requirements so that the
programs can go forward, and questions about the need to expand the efforts into a
global program that receives funding from numerous nations and possibly extends
assistance to others outside the former Soviet Union.
This report complements CRS Report 97-1027, Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat
Reduction Programs: Issues for Congress, by Amy F. Woolf, and CRS Report
RL31368, Preventing Proliferation of Biological Weapons: U.S. Assistance to the
Former Soviet States, by Michelle Stem Cook and Amy F. Woolf. It will be updated
In troduction ......................................................1
The Nunn-Lugar Amendment....................................3
A Slow Start..................................................5
An Evolving Program..........................................6
Department of Defense Cooperative Threat Reduction Program.............7
Chain of Custody.........................................13
Destruction and Dismantlement..............................16
Nonproliferation of WMD Expertise (Science and Technology Centers)..26
Export Control and Related Border Security Assistance ..............29
Department of Energy.............................................30
International Nuclear Materials Protection and Cooperation ...........31
Global Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention (formerly Russian
Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention........................41
Nuclear Cities Initiative (NCI)...............................42
Elimination of Weapons-Grade Plutonium Production................43
Fissile Materials Disposition....................................45
Issues for Congress...............................................47
Organization and Coordination ..................................48
Access and Transparency.......................................50
Liability Protections and the Umbrella Agreement...................51
Certifications and Waivers......................................52
Funding and Focus of the Programs..............................56
Globalization and International Cooperation........................58
The G-8 Global Partnership.................................58
Extending CTR Beyond the Former Soviet Union...............60
Global Recognition of National Responsibility..................62
Table 1. CTR Funding: Requests and Authorization......................11
Table 2. CTR Funding for Transportation Security......................13
Table 3. CTR Funding for Fissile Materials Storage.....................16
Table 4. CTR Funding for Strategic Offensive Arms Elimination (SOAE)....18
Table 5. Appropriations for M.C.&A and Related Programs...............40
Nonproliferation and Threat Reduction
Assistance: U.S. Programs in the Former
In the budget submitted for FY2008, Congress authorized around $1.3 billion
for U.S. programs that provide nonproliferation and threat reduction assistance to
Russia and the other states of the former Soviet Union.1 The Administration has
requested around $1.1 billion for these programs in its FY2009 budget — including
$414.1 million for DOD’s Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) program, $572
million for the Department of Energy’s (DOE) nonproliferation programs in Russia,
and around $110 million for State Department nonproliferation programs in the
former Soviet Union.2 With these programs, the United States seeks to help the
recipient nations transport, store, and eliminate nuclear, chemical and other weapons;
secure and eliminate the materials used in nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons;
and prevent proliferation of the knowledge needed to produce these weapons to
nations or groups outside the former Soviet Union. Since FY1992, the United States
has appropriated nearly $10 billion across these three agencies for these programs.3
President Bush has often voiced support for these programs. In November 2001,
the White House noted that “The United States is committed to strong, effective
cooperation with Russia and the other states emerging from the former Soviet Union
to reduce weapons of mass destruction and prevent the proliferation of these weapons
or the material and expertise to develop them.”4 At the U.S.-Russian summit in May
1 This includes $425.6 million for the Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) Program at the
Department of Defense (DOD); around $804 million for the Department of Energy’s (DOE)
nonproliferation programs in Russia and the other former Soviet states, and around $ 91.6
million for the portion of the State Department nonproliferation programs in the former
2 The DOE budget request for nonproliferation assistance programs totaled more than $800
million and the State Department budget in these areas totaled around $125 million, but both
include funding for programs outside the former Soviet Union.
3 The term “spent” in this statement refers to the amount of money appropriated for threat
reduction and nonproliferation programs. The amount of money actually paid to contractors
for the work covered by these programs is less than the appropriated amount because many
projects take years to complete, and payments may occur years after the money is
4 The White House. Office of the Press Secretary Fact Sheet. U.S. Government
Nonproliferation and Threat Reduction Assistance to the Russian Federation. November
programs and expand efforts to reduce weapons-usable fissile material.”5 At their
summit meeting in Bratislava in February 2005, Presidents Bush and Putin again
agreed to enhance their cooperation in securing nuclear weapons and materials.6
Furthermore, in June 2002, the President joined with the leaders of the G-8 nations
to create the G-8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials
of Mass Destruction. As is discussed in more detail later in this report, under this
partnership, the United States has committed to provide up to $10 billion over 10
years to pursue nonproliferation and threat reduction programs in Russia and the
other former Soviet states. This amount of $1 billion per year roughly equals current
U.S. expenditures on threat reduction and nonproliferation programs.
Congress has also supported U.S. nonproliferation and threat reduction
programs in the former Soviet states. Although some Members have questioned the
value and effectiveness of some specific projects, Congress has authorized most of
the funds requested by the Executive Branch in the years since these programs began.
Congress has also helped shape the programs, prohibiting funding for some types of
projects and providing added funding for others.
Many analysts have questioned, however, whether the United States is doing all
that it can to prevent the leakage of knowledge, weapons, and materials from the
former Soviet states. In its first budget submission in early 2001, the Bush
Administration reduced funding for the DOD threat reduction programs by nearly
10% and cut more than $100 million out of DOE’s defense nuclear nonproliferation
programs, a funding category that includes U.S. nonproliferation assistance to
Russia.7 The Administration increased funding for these programs in FY2003,
FY2004, and FY2006, but its budget for FY2005 and FY2007 for the DOD threat
reduction programs again showed a 10% decrease. Even with increases in DOE
budgets, some analysts argue that, when combined with declines in the DOD budget,
the funding falls short of what is needed to address the continuing dangers of
proliferation from the former Soviet states. Further, they note that the Administration
has begun to shift funding away from programs that secure weapons and materials
in the former Soviet states and into programs that provide border security and
assistance to a greater number of nations around the world. Consequently, they
argue, if the funding level does not grow, the United States will not be able to
accelerate the programs with the former Soviet Union to ensure that they effectively
stop the proliferation of Russia’s weapons, materials, and knowledge. These
concerns are evident in the congressional action on the FY2008 budget, which
includes increases in several of the threat reduction and nonproliferation programs.
Many analysts cite, as further evidence of the Administration’s wavering
commitment, its failure to certify Russia for threat reduction funding in FY2002. The
5 The White House. Office of the Press Secretary. Text of Joint Declaration. May 24,
6 The White House. Office of the Press Secretary. Joint Statement by President Bush and
President Putin on Nuclear Security Cooperation. February 24, 2005.
7 Congress eventually restored the funding for DOE’s Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation
programs and added $223 million more in the FY2002 Emergency Supplemental
Appropriations (P.L. 107-206) passed after the September 11, 2001 attacks.
Administration stated that it could not certify Russia’s compliance with its
obligations under the Biological and Chemical Weapons Conventions. This finding
delayed several ongoing programs.8 The Administration asked Congress to allow it
to waive the certification requirements (this debate is discussed in more detail later
in this report) so that funding could continue. But, for many analysts, this episode
demonstrated that the Administration had not placed the highest priority on
nonproliferation and threat reduction programs, in spite of its declarations about
stopping proliferation to keep weapons of mass destruction away from terrorists.
At issue in the debate over U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation programs
is not only the total amount of funding that the United States might commit to these
programs in the former Soviet states, but also the priority and sense of urgency that
the United States assigns to them. Further, Congress has identified the expansion of
these programs as one of the key steps that might be taken to implement the 9/11
Commission Report’s recommendations. Legislation prepared for consideration
early in the 110th Congress, indicates that, among the steps that should be taken to
implement the 9/11 Commission recommendations, the United States should ease the
process of expanding these programs to other nations outside the former Soviet
states. Both the House and the Senate are also poised to eliminate the certification
requirements entirely in their versions of the FY2008 Defense Authorization Bills
Many studies have offered recommendations for the size, shape, and operation
of these programs that differ from the approaches taken by the Clinton and Bush
Administrations. This report summarizes many issues raised in these reports and in
Congressional debates on the future of U.S. nonproliferation and threat reduction
assistance. However, it first reviews the history of these programs, describing their
origins in 1991, their expansion and evolution during the 1990s, and the changes in
their direction during the first two years of the Bush Administration. The report also
provides a broad summary of many of the program areas and projects supported by
The Nunn-Lugar Amendment
Congress initiated U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance to the
Soviet Union in November 1991. A failed coup in Moscow in August 1991 and the
subsequent disintegration of the Soviet Union had raised concerns about the safety
and security of Soviet nuclear weapons. Consequently, Senators Nunn and Lugar
proposed an amendment to the implementing legislation for the Conventional Armed
Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty (P.L. 102-228). The Senate passed the legislation by
a vote of 86-8; the House adopted it through the Conference Report. This
amendment, titled the “Soviet Nuclear Threat Reduction Act of 1991,” authorized the
use of $400 million in FY1992 Defense Department (DOD) funds to assist the Soviet
Union, and its “successor entities” with efforts to “1) destroy nuclear weapons,
8 The certification is only required for DOD programs and some State Department programs;
the absence of a certification did not affect DOE programs.
chemical weapons, and other weapons, 2) transport, store, disable, and safeguard
weapons in connection with their destruction; and 3) establish verifiable safeguards
against the proliferation of such weapons.”9
Senators arguing in support of the program, including Senators Nunn, Lugar,
and Biden, emphasized the potential risks inherent in the Soviet collapse. They noted
that the disintegration of the Soviet Union created “the danger that the ultimate
disposition of nuclear weapons in the new political system will not be conducive to
their safety or international stability,” particularly if the weapons remained in several
of the former Soviet republics. These Senators also warned of “a danger of seizure,
theft, sale or use of nuclear weapons or components ... particularly if a widespread
disintegration in the custodial system should occur.” And third, they argued that “any
weakening of control over weapons and components could spill outside the territory
of the former Soviet Union, fueling nuclear proliferation worldwide.”10 Senator
Nunn further warned that “we are on the verge of either having the greatest
destruction of nuclear weapons in the history of the world or the greatest proliferation
of nuclear weapons, nuclear materials, and scientific know-how on how to make
these weapons, as well as chemical weapons, ballistic missiles, even biological
weapons the world has ever seen.”11
Senators who supported this legislation also emphasized that, by targeting “U.S.
defense resources at the prompt, safe dismantlement of nuclear and chemical
weapons in the Soviet arsenal,”12 this assistance would “embody a new approach to
enhancing our national security, an approach which fits a dramatically new national
security environment.”13 Senator Biden further stated that, through this legislation,
the United States would be “assisting ourselves,” not the Soviet Union. But others
questioned this characterization. They viewed the proposed assistance to the Soviet
Union as foreign aid, which they opposed, and argued that the United States should
instead use its defense resources to fund its own military and national security needs.
Furthermore, some argued that, in providing assistance to the Soviet Union, the
United States would allow the Soviet Union to divert its own resources away from
the protection and dismantlement of its older weapons and towards the development
and production of new weapons that could create new threats to the United States.14
Members have raised these themes on numerous occasions over the years, debating
whether U.S. nonproliferation and threat reduction assistance is a foreign aid program
9 For more information on this legislation, see CRS Report 94-985, The Nunn-Lugar
Program for Soviet Weapons Dismantlement: Background and Implementation, by Theodor
Galdi. (Available from Amy F. Woolf, on request.)
10 See the comments of Senator Richard Lugar in the Congressional Record, November 25,
11 Ibid. p. S18004.
12 Senator Joe Biden, Congressional Record, November 25, 1991. p. S18002.
13 Senator Sam Nunn, Congressional Record, November 25, 1991. p. S18004.
14 See the comments of Senator Malcolm Wallop. Congressional Record, November 25,
that provides benefits primarily to the recipients or a security program that provides
benefits to both the United States and the former states of the Soviet Union.
Initially, Congress used the DOD budget to fund U.S. threat reduction assistance
to the former Soviet States. In 1993, DOD began to refer to this effort as the
Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) Program. Experts from other agencies, such
as the State Department and Department of Energy, participated in the projects when
their expertise was required. In FY1997 these agencies each took budgetary and
management responsibility for the projects that relied on their expertise.
Consequently, although many analysts and observers still use the title “Cooperative
Threat Reduction Program” when referring to the full range of U.S. nonproliferation
programs, this is no longer accurate. This report only uses the term “CTR” when
referring to the threat reduction programs funded by the Department of Defense. It
uses the phrase “threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance” to refer to the full
range of programs in DOD, DOE, and State.
A Slow Start
When Congress created the CTR program, many Members and experts outside
government seemed to envision a relatively simple program where officials from the
United States would travel to the four former Soviet states with nuclear weapons on
their territories — Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan — to quickly safeguard
and help dismantle nuclear, chemical, and other weapons. But the program’s
implementation was far slower and more complex than many expected. First, the
need to develop and implement coordinated policies among several U.S. government
agencies (primarily DOD, DOE, and the State Department) and within several
organizations in the Pentagon slowed program implementation. Furthermore, the
United States had to negotiate “umbrella agreements” with each recipient nation —
setting out the privileges and immunities of U.S. personnel and to establishing the
legal and customs framework for the provision of aid — before it could spend any
money in the former Soviet states. Lingering mistrust between the parties, along with
the high level of secrecy surrounding Russia’s nuclear and chemical weapons
programs complicated this process in 1992 and 1993.
During its first few years in office, the Clinton Administration sought to resolve
the bureaucratic issues that had delayed the program. It offered broader political
support to a cooperative relationship with Russia through a high level commission
chaired by Vice President Gore and Russia’s Prime Minister Chernomyrdin. This
commission identified many efforts that later received funding through the CTR
program. The Clinton Administration also provided significant policy and financial
support to the CTR program, overcoming the reticence that had been expressed by
some officials in the first Bush Administration. Consequently, it succeeded in
sharply increasing the rate of expenditures on CTR projects by the mid-1990s. With
the Administration’s support, and with continuing congressional interest in the
program, U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance began to expand and
evolve. It expanded to several agencies, with DOE and the State Department each
funding nonproliferation efforts in the former Soviet Union. It also expanded to
include a broader range of programs. Where it had first focused on improving
transportation security and helping with the destruction of strategic offensive nuclear
weapons, it grew to include a wide range of efforts to secure and destroy nuclear,
chemical, and biological weapons, the materials used in these weapons and the
knowledge needed to design and produce these weapons. It has also expanded
financially, from an initial level of approximately $400 million per year to a total of
nearly $1 billion per year across the three agencies.
An Evolving Program
Initially, many in Congress saw U.S. assistance under Nunn-Lugar as an
emergency response to impending chaos in the Soviet Union. Even after the sense
of immediate crisis passed in 1992 and 1993, many analysts and Members of
Congress remained concerned about the potential for diversion or a loss of control
of nuclear and other weapons. Russia’s economy was extremely weak and press
accounts reported that nuclear materials from Russia were appearing on the black
market in Western Europe. Consequently, many began to view CTR as a part of a
long-term threat reduction and nonproliferation effort. Former Secretary of Defense
William Perry referred to CTR as “defense by other means”15 as the program helped
eliminate Soviet weapons that had threatened the United States and contain weapons
and materials that could pose new threats in the hands of other nations.
By the mid-1990s, many observers also began to view U.S. assistance to the
former Soviet states as a part of the effort to keep weapons of mass destruction away
from terrorists. In 1996, experts testified to Congress that Russian nuclear and
chemical facilities, with their crumbling security and lack of accounting procedures,
could provide a source for terrorists seeking nuclear or chemical materials. In
response, Congress expanded the programs that provided security at facilities with
nuclear materials and suggested that more attention be paid to security at facilities
with materials that could be used in chemical or biological weapons.16 In January
2001, a task force sponsored by the Department of Energy stated that “the most
urgent unmet national security threat to the United States today is the danger that
weapons of mass destruction or weapons-usable materials in Russia could be stolen
and sold to terrorists or hostile nation states and used against American troops abroad
or citizens at home.”17 Since September 11, 2001, virtually all analysts who follow
U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance have made the link between the
possible quest for weapons of mass destruction by terrorists and the potential for
thwarting them by helping Russia protect its weapons, materials, and knowledge.18
15 See, for example, U.S. Department of Defense. Cooperative Threat Reduction. April
16 The March 1995 nerve agent attack in the Tokyo subway system by the Aum Shinryo cult
raised the profile of this type of threat.
17 The report went on to state that “unless protected from theft of diversion, the former
Soviet arsenal of weapons of mass destruction threatens to become a goldmine for would-be
proliferators the world over.” Baker, Howard and Lloyd Cutler, Co-Chairs, Russia Task
Force. A Report Card on the Department of Energy’s Nonproliferation Programs with
Russia. The Secretary of Energy Advisory Board, United States Department of Energy.
January 10, 2001. p. 1.
18 Senator Sam Nunn has stated that “Preventing the spread and use of nuclear biological,
The Bush Administration has also linked U.S. threat reduction and
nonproliferation assistance to the former Soviet States to U.S. efforts to keep
weapons of mass destruction away from terrorists. In early 2003, it stated that it had
“expanded the strategic focus of the CTR program” to support the war on terrorism.19
In its budgets presented between FY2004 and FY2007, it increased funding for
several export and border control programs, for programs designed to stem the
leakage of knowledge out of the former Soviet Union, and for an effort to find and
recover “radiological sources” — a type of military device that could provide
terrorists with nuclear materials for use in a “dirty bomb.”20 All of these initiatives
focus more on stemming proliferation than on eliminating nuclear weapons in the
former Soviet states. But it did not completely lose the initial focus. In February
2005, at the Bratislava summit, Presidents Bush and Putin agreed to accelerate some
of the efforts to secure Soviet-era nuclear weapons. As is noted below, this
agreement has shifted additional funding into some of the DOD CTR projects.
Department of Defense Cooperative Threat
At its inception, the CTR program sought to provide Russia, Ukraine, Belarus,
and Kazakhstan with assistance in the safe and secure transportation, storage, and
dismantlement of nuclear weapons. During the first few years, the mandate for U.S.
assistance expanded to include efforts to secure materials that might be used in
nuclear or chemical weapons, to prevent the diversion of scientific expertise from the
former Soviet Union, to expand military-to-military contacts between officers in the
United States and the former Soviet Union, and to facilitate the demilitarization of
defense industries.21 In 1994, Congress also indicated that threat reduction funds
could be used to assist in environmental restoration at former military sites and to
provide housing for former military officers who had been demobilized as a result of
the dismantling of strategic offensive weapons. The 104th Congress reversed this
position, however, banning the use of CTR funds for environmental restoration or
and chemical weapons and materials should be the central organizing principle on securityst
for the 21 century.” Remarks by Former U.S. Senator Sam Nunn, Chairman, Nuclear
Threat Initiative. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. International
Nonproliferation Conference. November 14 , 2002.
19 U.S. Department of Defense. Fiscal Year 2004/2005 Biennial Budget Estimates. Former
Soviet Union Threat Reduction Appropriation. February 2003. p. 1.
20 Many analysts believe that this type of weapon, which could disperse radioactive
materials across a wide area, might be particularly attractive to terrorists. For details see
CRS Report RS21528, Terrorist “Dirty Bombs:” A Brief Primer, by Jonathan Medalia.
21 For a more detailed description of the changes in the legislative mandate for the CTR
program, see CRS Report 97-1027 F, Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Programs:
Issues for Congress, by Amy F. Woolf.
housing for military officers. It also denied additional funding for the Defense
Enterprise Fund, which focused on demilitarizing former Soviet defense industries.
By the mid-1990s, Congress and the Clinton Administration had agreed on a
mandate for the CTR program that focused on the “core” objectives of securing and
dismantling nuclear and chemical weapons, along with protecting against the
proliferation of knowledge and materials that might be used in the production of
these weapons by other nations. The Clinton Administration outlined this mandate
in four key objectives for the CTR program:
!Destroy nuclear, chemical, and other weapons of mass destruction;
!Transport, store, disable, and safeguard these weapons in connection
with their destruction;
!Establish verifiable safeguards against the proliferation of these
weapons, their components, and weapons-usable materials; and
!Prevent the diversion of scientific expertise that could contribute to
weapons programs in other nations.22
In the late 1990s, Congress added funds to the CTR budget for biological
weapons proliferation prevention; this effort has expanded substantially in recent
years. Congress also expanded the CTR program to allow the use of CTR funds for
emergency assistance to remove weapons of mass destruction or materials and
equipment related to these weapons from any of the former Soviet republics.23
Its first budget, in FY2002, the Bush Administration reduced CTR funding by
nearly 10% from over $440 million to $403 million. It also began a review of all
U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance to Russia and the former Soviet
states, stating that it sought to “ensure that existing U.S. cooperative nonproliferation
programs with Russia are focused on priority threat reduction and nonproliferation
goals, and are conducted as efficiently and as effectively as possible.”24 Some
analysts welcomed the review, noting that it could provide an opportunity to revise
and expand some programs, but others feared the review would lead to reductions in
funding and the elimination of some programs.
22 U.S. Department of Defense. Cooperative Threat Reduction. April 1995. Washington,
DC. p. 4.
23 DOD has used CTR funds for this purpose in several instances. For example, in
November 1997, the United States purchased 21 nuclear-capable MIG-29 aircraft from the
Republic of Moldova before Moldava could sell these aircraft to a nation seeking nuclear
delivery capabilities. In April 1998, using CTR funds, the United States and Great Britain
moved 8.8 pounds of highly enriched uranium and 17.6 pounds of highly radioactive spent
fuel from a nuclear reactor outside Tbilisi, Georgia to Dounreay, Scotland.
24 The White House. Fact Sheet. Administration Review of Nonproliferation and Threat
Reduction Assistance to the Russian Federation. December 11, 2001.
When it announced the results of the review, the Administration stated that it
found that “most U.S. programs to assist Russia in threat reduction and
nonproliferation work well, are focused on priority tasks, and are well managed.”25
But the review did signal a shift in the focus of U.S. nonproliferation and threat
reduction assistance. Instead of highlighting projects aimed at the elimination of
nuclear weapons, the Administration indicated that it would expand some projects
that focused on chemical and biological weapons nonproliferation, including
increasing funding for the construction of a controversial chemical weapons
destruction facility in Russia. For many, this change seemed to be a natural response,
in the post-September 11 environment, to growing concerns about the potential link
between terrorism and weapons of mass destruction. Others, however, saw it as a
retreat from the long-standing core objectives of the CTR program.
The Administration confirmed this shift in focus with the release of its FY2004
budget request for CTR. Where the Administration requested and received $50
million in FY2002 and around $133 million in FY2003 for the construction of the
chemical weapons destruction facility in Russia, it requested, and Congress
authorized, $200.3 million in FY2004. This is nearly 45% of the total CTR budget
request. The Administration also increased funding for biological weapons
proliferation prevention from $17 million in FY2002 to around $55 million in
FY2003 and $54.2 million for FY2004. In contrast, funding for strategic offensive
arms elimination in Russia declined from $133.4 million in FY2002 to $70.1 million
in FY2003 and $57.6 million in FY2004.26
Furthermore, in testimony before the House Armed Services Committee, J.D.
Crouch, the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy, stated
that the Administration had revised the four key objectives for CTR. The program
now seeks to:
!Dismantle FSU (former Soviet Union) WMD (weapons of mass
destruction) and associated infrastructure;
!Consolidate and secure FSU WMD and related technology and
!Increase transparency and encourage higher standards of conduct;
!Support defense and military cooperation with the objective of
26 The reduced request for FY2004 reflects, in part, the presence of unexpended balances
from FY2003. The United States did not spend these funds because it could not initiate any
new contracts during the period after the President did not certify Russia for participation
in the CTR program and before Congress allowed the President to waive the certification
requirement. See Statement of Dr. J.D. Crouch, II. March 4, 2003. p. 4.
27 U.S. House. Committee on Armed Services Statement of Dr. J.D. Crouch II, Assistant
Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy. March 4, 2003. p. 4. The
Although most ongoing CTR projects are consistent with these objectives, the
absence of any specific reference to the destruction of nuclear weapons is notable.
In addition, by stating that the United States seeks to “encourage higher standards of
conduct,” the Bush Administration has indicated that it will place a higher priority
on Russian openness, cooperation, and compliance with arms control agreements.
This emphasis was evident in the Administration’s decision against certifying Russia
for CTR assistance in 2002. This also presents something of a departure from the
past, when the United States raised issues of transparency, openness, and compliance
with Russia during private meetings, but did not tie these issues directly to the goals
of the CTR program.
When Congress first passed the Nunn-Lugar Amendment, it authorized the
transfer of $400 million in FY1992 funds from other DOD accounts for threat
reduction activities in the former Soviet Union. Few of these funds were spent in
FY1992, so Congress extended the transfer authority for FY1992 funds and
authorized the transfer of an additional $400 million from other DOD accounts in
FY1993. In subsequent years, the Clinton Administration requested, and Congress
authorized new appropriations for the CTR program. Table 1 summarizes the
amount of funding the Presidents requested for the CTR program and the amount
authorized by Congress in each of the fiscal years between 1992 and 2006. Congress
has authorized just over $6 billion for CTR since 1992.
Congress has approved the Administration’s request for CTR funding in most
years, but has added or reduced funding in some. In FY1996, the new Republican
majority in the House questioned many elements of the CTR program and the House
Armed Services Committee reduced funding to $200 million. The Senate had
approved the Administration’s request, and the Conference Committee agreed on a
compromise of $300 million. The House also reduced the Administration’s request
in FY1997, approving $302.9 million for CTR, but the Senate added $37 million and28
the House eventually accepted the Senate’s version in the Conference Committee.
Administration has formally incorporated these objectives into its planning for and reporting
on the CTR Program. See U.S. Department of Defense. FY2006 CTR Annual Report to
Congress. December 31, 2004. p. 1.
28 This trend, with the House approving less than the President requested and the Senate
approving the President’s request, continued for several years. For details see CRS Report
97-1027, Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Programs: Issues for Congress, by
Amy F. Woolf.
Table 1. CTR Funding: Requests and Authorization
1998 $382.2 $382.2
1999 $440.4 $440.4
2000 $475.5 $475.5
2001 $458.4 $443.4
2003 $416.7 $416.7
2004 $450.8 $450.8
2005 $409.2 $409.2
2006 $415.5 $415.5
2007 $372.3 $372.3
2008 $348.0 $428.05
In FY2001, the House reduced President Clinton’s request for CTR to $433
million. The Senate approved the full request and the Conference Committee settled
on $443 million. This reduction was part of a dispute between the House, on one
side, and the Senate and the Clinton Administration, on the other side, over funding
for the chemical weapons destruction facility at Shchuch’ye in Russia. The House
Armed Services Committee had reduced funding for that program in FY1998 and
FY1999; in each of these two years, the Senate and the Conference Committee
approved the Administration’s requests. In FY2000, the House again eliminated all
funding for the construction of Shchuch’ye and mandated, instead, that CTR fund
security improvements at Russia’s chemical weapons storage facilities. The
Conference Committee accepted the House position, but still approved the
Administration’s request for $475.5 million for CTR. In FY2001, the Senate again
accepted the House position banning funding for Shchuch’ye and, this time, accepted
a small reduction in total funding for CTR.
In FY1996, when the Clinton Administration’s request for CTR funding
declined from $400 million to $371 million, total U.S. spending on threat reduction
and nonproliferation assistance to Russia actually increased. In that year, the
Materials Protection Control and Accounting Program (MPC&A) moved from
DOD’s CTR budget to the Department of Energy; the Clinton Administration
requested and Congress authorized $70 million for DOE programs. In addition, $33
million in funding for the International Science and Technology Center in Moscow
moved from the DOD budget to the State Department budget. In subsequent years,
as is noted in more detail below, funding continued to grow for the DOE and State
As is evident in the table above, the Bush Administration’s request for CTR
funding declined in both FY2007 and FY2008. And, although the funding request for
FY2009 is greater than the FY2008 request, it falls below the amount authorized in
FY2008. For the most part, these declines reflect reductions in the funding requested
for the chemical weapons destruction facility at Shchuch’ye, as it neared completion,
and, to a lesser extent, declines in funding for weapons elimination programs. The
Administration did not propose to offset these reduction with increases in funding for
new existing projects or the initiation of new projects. Congress did not accept this
new funding profile in FY2008. Both chambers added funding for CTR programs.
The House has added $50 million, with 42.7 million going to the plant at Shchuch’ye
and $7 million allocated to potential new initiatives in the CTR program. The
Senate, for its part, added $80 million to the CTR budget request, with $50 million
of this added funding going to biological weapons proliferation prevention. Funds
were also added to the accounts for strategic offensive arms elimination in Russia
and weapons of mass destruction proliferation prevention. The Conference
Committee (H.Rept. 100-477, Title XIII) accepted the Senate’s funding level,
authorizing $428 million for CTR, with much of this added funding going to
biological weapons proliferation prevention. The legislation also authorizes $10
million for new CTR initiatives that are outside the former Soviet Union. The
Conference Committee did not retain the provision approved by the House that
would fund new initiatives in CTR within the former Soviet Union. It did however,
express support for such initiatives (H.Rept. 110-477, Sec. 1306) and request a study
by the National Academy of Sciences that would assess possible initiatives and
identify options for strengthening the program.
In its early years, the Department of Defense divided the CTR program into
three distinct project areas — chain of custody, destruction and dismantlement, and
demilitarization.29 Although it no longer makes these distinctions in its requests for
or reports on CTR programs, they serve as a useful organizational tool when
reviewing the history of the programs.
29 This division, and the description in the next few paragraphs come from U.S. Department
of Defense. Cooperative Threat Reduction. April 1995. Washington, DC. p. 5-6. The
fourth category, “Other,” includes administrative expenses and a special project on Arctic
Chain of Custody. Chain of custody activities are those designed to enhance
safety, security, and control over nuclear weapons and fissile materials. Many of
these were completed during the early years of CTR. These programs were created,
in part, in response to early concerns about the safety and security of weapons and
materials in transit. The United States and the recipient nations also found it easier
to agree on the implementation of projects that focused on transit and storage of
nuclear weapons and materials than to focus on destruction activities. The brief
descriptions that follow summarize some of the key chain of custody activities.30
Transportation Security. When the Soviet Union collapsed, thousands of
nuclear weapons were spread among four states (Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, and
Kazakhstan), and, within each state, the weapons were dispersed among hundreds of
deployment and storage areas. Soviet President Gorbachev and Russia’s President
Yeltsin had both committed to removing non-strategic nuclear weapons (those with
ranges less than 3,600 miles) from non-Russian republics and storing them in a
smaller number of facilities in Russia. In 1992, after signing the Lisbon Protocol to
the START I Treaty, Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan also pledged to return all the
warheads based on their territories to Russia.31 Table 2 summarizes the amount of
money that the United States has appropriated for many of these transportation
security projects through FY2008.
Table 2. CTR Funding for Transportation Security
ProjectFiscal yearsTotal appropriation
Railcar security enhancementsFY1992-FY1994$21.5
Source: Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by Matthew
Bunn, et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
The United States has helped Russia improve the safety and security of nuclear
weapons in transit. According to DOD, the CTR program “assists in the secure
transport of 1,000-1,500 warheads per year.” It has provided armored blankets to
protect warheads in transit from potential attacks, storage containers to hold the
warheads during transit, and assistance to enhance the safety and security of rail cars
used to transport warheads from deployment to storage or dismantlement facilities.
Ongoing transportation security projects also provide Russia with emergency
response vehicles, training, and support equipment that it might need to respond to
30 The Defense Threat Reduction Agency [http://www.dtra.mil/oe/ctr/programs/index.cfm].
31 For a description of the nuclear weapons based in non-Russian republics in 1991, see CRS
Report RL32202, Nuclear Weapons in Russia: Safety, Security, and Control Issues, by
Amy F. Woolf.
a nuclear weapons transportation accident. Funding for FY2005 supported the
procurement and maintenance of specialized warhead transportation railcars.32 The
United States also supported the movement of 45 train shipments in 2004. This
number dropped to 24 shipments in 2005. The United States has required increased
transparency for these shipments, and the process stopped between November 2004
and May 2005 while the Untied States and Russia resolved this issue. Congress
authorized an additional $30 million for this project in FY2007; the Bush
Administration requested, and both the House and Senate authorized, $37.7 million
for FY2008. DOD initially indicated that it planned to support 70-72 shipments per
year through 2011,33 but it has reduced that number to no more than 4 shipments per
month, or 48 per year, for FY2006, FY2007, and FY2008. The funding for these
years will also permit DOD to procure around 20 additional cargo railcars for this
effort in FY2008. DOD has requested $40.8 million for transportation security for
Weapons Storage Security. Several CTR projects seek to help Russia
improve security at storage facilities for strategic and tactical nuclear warheads.
Russia has three types of storage sites — operational sites, storage sites, and rail
transfer points. The United States does not provide assistance at operational sites.
The Department of Energy has addressed security needs at rail transfer points that
store warheads from the Russian Navy, and plans to do the same at one or more sites
for the Strategic Rocket forces. Under the CTR program, DOD is working to
enhance security at both large “national stockpile storage sites” and smaller storage
sites at Navy, Air Force, and Strategic Rocket Force bases.34 DOD plans to provide
perimeter fencing, as a “quick fix” for vulnerable sites, and more comprehensive
upgrades, including alarm systems and inventory control and management equipment
to keep track of warheads in storage.
According to the GAO, this effort was slowed by Russia’s reluctance to provide
the United States with information about the precise number of sites in need of
security upgrades and its refusal to allow the United States access to sites to design
appropriate upgrades. For example, DOD purchased 123 kilometers of perimeter
fencing for weapons storage sites; the Russian Ministry of Defense (MOD) said it
would install the fences itself, but it has reportedly made little progress in doing so.35
Furthermore, the United States purchased and tested equipment for comprehensive
upgrades, but could not install it because Russia’s MOD had not allowed the United
States access to the interior of any storage facilities. The United States and Russia
completed agreements in February 2003 that will provide the United States with a
32 Hoehn, William. Preliminary Analysis of U.S. Department of Defense’s Fiscal Year 2005
Cooperative Threat Reduction Budget Request. RANSAC. February 10, 2004.
33 U.S. Department of Defense. FY2006 CTR Annual Report to Congress. December 31,
34 The total number of sites remains classified. For details on DOD’s plans, see U.S.
General Accounting Office. Weapons of Mass Destruction: Additional Russian Cooperation
Needed to Facilitate U.S. Efforts to Improve Security at Russian Sites. GAO-02-482.
March 2003. p. 34.
35 Ibid. p. 36.
degree of access to these sites.36 U.S. personnel can now conduct site assessments
and other activities that support the installation of physical security upgrades at a
number of weapons storage locations. This change is reflected in significant
increases in funding for site security enhancements in the FY2005 and FY2006
budget requests for CTR. The United States eventually plans to provide security
enhancements at up to 42 permanent storage sites and temporary handling sites in
Russia.37 Through 2006, DOD had completed site upgrades at one of 12 initial sites,
and had ordered the equipment to proceed at the other 11 sites. In a complementary
effort, the United States has constructed a Security Assessment and Training Center
so that DOD and MOD personnel can test and select security systems for weapons
storage sites. The United States is also helping Russia develop training programs for
personnel with access to nuclear weapons.
Between FY1995 and FY2007, DOD appropriated just around $745 million for
weapons storage security.38 The Administration requested $74.1 million in FY2006,
and reprogrammed $10 million intended for strategic offensive arms elimination to
this program area in FY2006, leading to a total appropriation of $84.1 million. It also
requested an additional $44.5 million in the FY2006 Emergency Supplemental
Appropriations package for effort. Then, it requested an additional $87.1 million for
FY2007. Congress approved the added funding in the Emergency Supplemental Bill
and authorized 74.1 million for FY2007. The Administration requested only $23
million for warhead storage security for FY2008; Congress increased this amount to
$47.64 million in the Conference Report on the FY2008 Defense Authorization Bill.
The increases in funding for warhead security through FY2007 reflect a
commitment made by Presidents Bush and Putin in February 2005 to accelerate the
warhead security upgrades. After Russia identified all the sites in need of upgrades,
the United States agreed to provide assistance at 15 sites, 8 with funding from the
CTR program and 7 with funding from the DOE nonproliferation budget. They hope
to complete these upgrades with funding provided through 2007,39 and plan to move
towards funding sustainment activities, rather than further upgrades. The FY2009
request for weapons storage security has declined to $24.1 million, providing further
evidence of the shift in funding to efforts to sustain and support the systems that have
been installed in previous years.
Fissile Materials Storage. According to unclassified estimates, Russia
inherited more than 30,000 nuclear warheads from the Soviet Union, along with
enough plutonium and highly enriched uranium (HEU) to produce thousands more
warheads. As it consolidates and reduces its arsenal, Russia has begun to dismantle
36 U.S. House. Committee on Armed Services. Statement of Dr. J.D. Crouch, Assistant
Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy. March 4, 2003.
37 U.S. Department of Defense. FY2006 CTR Annual Report to Congress. December 31,
38 Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by
Matthew Bunn, et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
39 Hoehn, William. Preliminary Analysis of the U.S. Department of Defense’s Fiscal Year
thousands of these warheads. Several CTR projects seek to improve the long-term
security of the fissile materials removed from these weapons. Table 3 summarizes
the amount of money that the United States has appropriated for projects related to
storage of fissile materials in Russia.
Table 3. CTR Funding for Fissile Materials Storage
ProjectFiscal yearsTotal appropriation
Fissile Material ContainersFY1992-FY2000$82.2
Storage Facility DesignFY1993$15
Source: Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by Matthew
Bunn, et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
The United States provided Russia with more than 26,000 containers to hold the
fissile materials; it also helped Russia design and build a highly secure storage
facility at Mayak that will provide long-term safe and secure storage for these
materials. This facility will hold the equivalent of fissile material from 25,000
nuclear warheads. The first wing of this building was completed and certified for use
in December 2003; it is now ready to receive nuclear materials for storage.40 The
United States and Russia no longer plan to construct an expected second wing.41 The
United States and Russia are still working, with little progress, to complete a
“transparency agreement” that will allow the United States to confirm that materials
stored in the facility actually came from dismantled warheads. Even without the
completion of this agreement, however, the Mayak facility began to accept nuclear
materials for storage in July 2006.
Destruction and Dismantlement. Destruction and dismantlement projects
help with the elimination of nuclear, chemical, and other weapons and their delivery
vehicles. To date, many of these projects have helped Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, and
Kazakhstan remove warheads, deactivate missiles, and eliminate launch facilities for
the nuclear weapons covered by the START I treaty. The Clinton Administration,
and some analysts outside government, credited U.S. assistance in this area with
providing Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan with an incentive to relinquish the42
nuclear weapons on their territories in the early 1990s. When the Soviet Union
40 U.S. Senate. Committee on Armed Services. Cooperative Threat Reduction Program.
Testimony of Lisa Bronson, Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Technology Security
Policy and Counterproliferation. March 10, 2004. (Herein after referred to as Bronson
41 The absence of funding for the second wing of Mayak was responsible for a significant
portion of the decline in the Bush Administration request for CTR funding, from $443
million in FY2001 to $403 million, in FY2002.
42 U.S. Department of Defense. Cooperative Threat Reduction. April 1995. Washington,
collapsed in 1991, it had more than 11,000 warheads deployed on nearly 1,400
ICBMs, 940 SLBMs and 162 heavy bombers. According to the Defense Threat
Reduction Agency, the CTR program has helped deactivate more than 6,828
warheads, 611 ICBMs, 563 SLBMs, and 152 heavy bombers.43 More than half of the
funds appropriated for CTR support projects in this category. Some of the key areas
of destruction and dismantlement projects are described below.
Strategic Offensive Arms Elimination. The United States has provided
Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan with assistance in eliminating the
launchers and infrastructure associated with strategic nuclear weapons deployed on
their territories. This effort is complete in Belarus, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan; it
continues in Russia. The United States and Ukraine have not agreed on a method to
eliminate rocket motors from SS-24 ICBMs. As a result, DOD did not request any
more funding for this project area in FY2006 and planned to complete its work with
prior year funds. In each of these nations, the United States has provided the
recipient nations with technology and expertise needed to deactivate and dismantle
missiles, launchers, submarines, and bombers. It has also helped construct storage
facilities for missiles removed from deployment and fuel removed from deactivated
In Russia, the United States is helping to eliminate and dismantle SS-18 and SS-
19 ICBMs, disassemble and eliminate components of the SS-N-20 SLBM, eliminate
SS-25 ICBMs and their road-mobile launchers, and destroying rail-mobile SS-24
ICBMs and their launchers. For FY2006, DOD requested $78.9 million for this
project area, an increase of around $20 million over the budget in FY2005. The
increase reflected the fact that Russia had added more missiles and launchers to the
destruction schedule to meet the terms of the Moscow Treaty. However, after
Congress appropriated the requested amount, the Administration reprogrammed
funding out of this project area, leaving only $49.7 million. As was noted above, it
transferred $10 million to weapons storage security. It also transferred $1.1 million
to strategic offensive arms elimination programs in Ukraine and will lose around $5
million in recisions imposed by Congress. The Bush Administration requested $77
million for this project area in FY2007; Congress approved $78.9 million. It
requested $77.9 million for FY2008. The House approved this amount; the Senate,
however, increased funding for strategic offensive arms elimination in Russia to
$102.9 million. According to the Senate Armed Service Committee Report on this
legislation (S.Rept. 110-77), this increase of $25 million should be used to
“accelerate the completion of activities at sites ... where the materials and weapons
are stored” and to facilitate the consolidation, dismantlement, and disposition of these
weapons and materials. The Conference Committee (H.Rept. 110-477) allocated
$92.885 million to this project area. DOD has requested $79.9 million for Strategic
Offensive Arms Elimination in Russia, and $6.4 million for Strategic Nuclear Arms
Elimination in Ukraine in FY2009.
DC. p. 1.
43 For the full CTR scorecard, see Defense Threat Reduction Agency, [http://www.dtra.mil/
Table 4 summarizes the amount of money that the United States has
appropriated for several key strategic offensive arms elimination projects.44
Table 4. CTR Funding for Strategic Offensive
Arms Elimination (SOAE)
NationFiscal yearsTotal appropriation
Russia FY1993-FY2008 $1463.29
Ukraine FY1993-FY2004 $575.4 a
K a za hkstan FY1994-FY1996 $64.6
Belarus FY1994-FY1996 $3.3
Source: Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by Matthew
Bunn, et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
a. The Administration did not request any additional funds for this effort in FY2005 or FY2006.
One project funded in this category, the construction of a plant to dispose of
liquid fuel removed from Soviet ICBMs, has recently raised concerns among some
in Congress. The United States constructed the facility at a cost of nearly $100
million. However, during construction, Russia used much of the fuel in rockets in
its space-launch program. Consequently, in 2002, Russia informed the United States45
that it did not have any fuel for the facility. Representative Duncan Hunter has
sought further information about this episode, stating that it represents an example46
of the potential for waste in the CTR program. Others, however, note that, although
unfortunate, this case is the exception in a program that has spent more than $4
billion on threat reduction projects.
WMD Infrastructure Elimination. Through the CTR program, the United
States has helped Ukraine eliminate equipment and facilities that supported the
deployment and operation of nuclear weapons. These facilities include liquid missile
propellant storage facilities, nuclear weapons storage facilities, and infrastructure at
bomber bases. The United States also helped Kazakhstan secure fissile materials and
eliminate facilities at a nuclear weapons storage area and a former chemical weapons
44 For a more detailed breakdown of projects in this program area, see U.S. House.
Committee on Armed Services. Statement of Dr. J.D. Crouch, Assistant Secretary of
Defense for International Security Policy. March 4, 2003. p. 4. See also U.S. Department
of Defense. Fiscal Year 2004/2005 Biennial Budget Estimates. Former Soviet Union
Threat Reduction Appropriation. February 2003. pp. 16-21.
45 U.S. House. Committee on Armed Services. Statement of David K. Steensma, Deputy
Assistant Inspector for Auditing, Department of Defense Office of the Inspector General.
March 4, 2003.
46 Hunter, Duncan. “Wasteful ‘Threat Reduction’ in Russia.” Washington Post. March 4,
production facility.47 Between FY1994 and FY2003, DOD appropriated $38.2
million for this program in Ukraine and $44.5 million in Kazakhstan. It has not
request any additional funds in subsequent years.
Chemical Weapons Destruction. The Soviet Union had the largest
stockpile of chemical weapons in the world. Russia declared this stockpile to contain
40,000 metric tons of chemical weapons. The United States has questioned the
accuracy and completeness of this declaration, a factor that contributed to Russia’s
loss of certification for CTR programs in FY2002. Russia’s chemical weapons are
stored at seven sites in Russia; five sites contain nerve agents in bombs and artillery
shells, and three of these sites and two additional sites house bulk stocks of blister
agents.48 Russia has committed, under the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC),
to destroy these stocks by 2007 (it has requested an extension until 2012), but it
contends that it lacks the financial resources to meet this deadline. A European
consortium, led by Germany, has constructed a destruction facility at Gorny to
destroy the blister agent.49 The United States is assisting Russia with the design and
construction of a facility at Shchuch’ye to destroy all of Russia’s nerve agent. The
chemical weapons storage facility at Shchuch’ye contains nearly half of Russia’s50
stockpile of artillery shells filled with nerve agent. The new facility is intended to
destroy these stocks and those stored at the other four storage sites, an amount
estimated to be around 5,450 metric tons.
Construction on this facility began in March 2003. DOD reports that nearly all
the design work on the facility has been completed and construction is underway.
Construction has begun on the Main Destruction Building, the Bituminization
Building, the Administration Building, and the Material Storage Building. The
United States has also begun to install equipment at the destruction facility and to
train the operating personnel. The United States and Russia had hoped that
construction would be completed and the facility would begin operations by the end
of 2008. It would then take around 3.5 years to destroy the stocks of nerve agent,
allowing Russia to meet the 2012 deadline. But it seems likely that this timetable
This project has been at the center of much debate during the past eight years.
In FY1999, the House tried to reduce the amount of CTR funding requested for
Shchuch’ye by $53.4 million, arguing that Russia’s chemical weapons posed more
47 U.S. Department of Defense. Fiscal Year 2004/2005 Biennial Budget Estimates. Former
Soviet Union Threat Reduction Appropriation. February 2003. p. 9.
48 U.S. General Accounting Office. Weapons of Mass Destruction: Additional Russian
Cooperation Needed to Facilitate U.S. Efforts to Improve Security at Russian Sites. GAO-
49 For a description of this facility and program see Glasser, Susan B. “Cloud Over Russia’s
Poison Gas Disposal.” Washington Post. August 24, 2002. p. 1
50 The Department of Defense estimates this to be 5,460 metric tons of agent in nearly 2
million rocket and artillery warheads. See U.S. Department of Defense. Fiscal Year
2004/2005 Biennial Budget Estimates. Former Soviet Union Threat Reduction
Appropriation. February 2003. p. 4
of an environmental problem for Russia than a threat to U.S. security.51 The Defense
Authorization Bills for FY2000 and FY2001 prohibited any additional funding for
Shchuch’ye. Congress resumed funding Shchuch’ye in FY2002, when the Bush
Administration requested $50 million for the project. However, in FY2003, when
the Bush Administration requested $133.6 million for Shchuch’ye, the House balked
again and approved $50 million. The House Armed Services Committee argued that
the program could not absorb such a large increase in one year and, because Russia
did not yet appear committed to the elimination of its chemical weapons, that the
United States should not accelerate its efforts. The Conference Report (107-772)
also limited funding for Shchuch’ye to $50 million, but it stated that the
Administration could use the remaining $83.6 for other projects related to the storage
and elimination of nuclear weapons, or for chemical weapons destruction if Russia
provides a “full and accurate” disclosure of its chemical weapons stockpile.
The Bush Administration requested $200 million for this project in FY2004.
The Senate approved this amount, but the House, in its version of the FY2004
Defense Authorization Bill (H.R. 1588), reduced the funding to $171.5 million. It
also mandated that the United States could only release funds in excess of $71
million if Russia and other nations contributed to the project. Specifically, the U.S.
contribution could not exceed the other nations’ contribution by more than a factor
of two. These provisions reflect concerns expressed by some in the House about a
lack of financial commitment from Russia and other European nations to the
Shchuch’ye project. The Conference Committee rejected the House position,
approving the full $200 million for Shchuch’ye and eliminating the linkage of U.S.
funding to funding from other nations. Nevertheless, by December 2003, six other
countries had contributed $69 million to the project.52
The Bush Administration requested, and Congress authorized, $158.4 million
for Shchuch’ye in FY2005. The reduction in funding for this project represents most
of the reduction in the overall CTR budget between FY2004 and FY2005. This
reduction in funding does not derive from any significant policy debates about the
project; instead, it occurred because the FY2004 budget included funding for a one-
time investment in capital-intensive construction equipment. The United States does
not need to repeat this investment in FY2005.53 The Administration requested, and
received, an additional $108.5 million in its budget for FY2006. It requested only
$42.7 million for this project in FY2007; Congress approved this request. The
Administration has indicated that the reduction reflects the maturity of the project
and the lack of any further capital investment.
The Administration did not request any additional funding for the Shchuch’ye
plant in the FY2008 budget. This lack of funding has raised eyebrows among
analysts outside government, as work at the facility is not yet complete and the
facility is not yet operating. The House Armed Services Committee also questioned
51 U.S. Congress, House, Committee on National Security. National Defense Authorization
Act For Fiscal Year 1999. Report 105-532, Washington, DC. May 12, 1998. p. 352.
52 Bronson Testimony, March 10, 2004.
this approach and added nearly $43 million to the budget in the FY2008 Defense
Authorization Bill for Shchcuch’ye. In its report on the Bill (H.Rept. 110-46), the
committee noted that it did not believe that DOD could complete the project without
additional funding, as the existing budget did not account for the rising costs of
construction materials in Russia. The Conference Committee approved $6 million
for this project area, allowing some work to continue during FY2008. Congress has
also required that the Secretary of Defense submit a report on the strategy and cost
estimates for completing the Shchcuch’ye project. The Administration again did not
request any funding for Shchcuch’ye in FY2009.
In the past, Congress has subjected funding for Shchuch’ye to a number of
certifications. For example, it stated that the President must certify that Russia is
committed to providing at least $25 million per year to help construct and operate the
facility; that Russia was committed to destroying all its remaining nerve agent; that
other nations were committed to contributing to the construction of this facility; and
that Russia is forthcoming with data about its chemical weapons stockpile. The
President requested that Congress allow him to waive the certification requirement,
so that construction could continue, even if Russia has not met all the conditions.
Congress provided the President with waiver authority, but only for one year, in the
FY2003 Defense Authorization Bill (P.L. 107-248).54 It extended this waiver
authority by one more year in the FY2004 Defense Authorization Bill (H.R. 1588);
the Administration submitted this waiver in early December 2003.55 For FY2005, the
Senate approved unlimited waiver authority for the President, but the House again
limited this authority to one year. The House prevailed in Conference, with an
adjustment to allowing the waiver authority through the end of the calendar year,
rather than the fiscal year (see P.L. 108-375). Congress extended this waiver
authority through 2011.
Between FY1992 and FY2007, DOD allocated nearly $950 million for design
and construction at Shchuch’ye. Congress also appropriated $20 million, in FY1999,
to improve security at Russia’s chemical weapons facilities. Congress mandated this
program, after denying funds for chemical weapons destruction. DOD completed
security work at two sites in December 2003 and does not intend to expand the
program, as this would be a short-term effort because Russia has committed to
destroy its stockpile.
Biological Weapons Threat Reduction (BWTR). The Soviet Union
reportedly developed the world’s largest biological weapons program, employing an
estimated 60,000 people at more than 50 sites. This weapons complex developed a
54 The waiver authority for the certification requirements from Shchuch’ye is different from
the waiver authority the President sought for the broader certification requirements included
in the CTR legislation. These are discussed in more detail below.
55 Memorandum for the Secretary of State, Presidential Determination No. 2004-10.
Presidential Determination on Waiver of Conditions on Obligation and Expenditure of
Funds for Planning, Design, and Construction of a Chemical Weapons Destruction Facility
in Russia. The White House. December 9, 2003.
broad range of biological pathogens for use against plants, animals, and humans.56
Russia reportedly continued to pursue research and development of biological agents
in the 1990s, even as the security systems and supporting infrastructure at its facilities
began to deteriorate. The United State began to provide Russia with CTR assistance
to improve safety and security at its biological weapons sites and to help employ
biological weapons scientists during the late 1990s, even though Russia has not
provided a complete inventory of the sites or people involved in biological weapons
The CTR program supports four separate BWTR programs, working at 49 sites
that include many weapons facilities. Through the Biological Weapons Infrastructure
Elimination program, the United States is helping Russia eliminate the infrastructure
and equipment at those Biological Research and Production Centers (BRPCs) that
have the capability to produce biological weapons. Through the Biosecurity and
Biosafety program, the United States is helping to enhance safety and security at
these centers to ensure the safe and secure storage and handling of biological
pathogens. This program has been combined with the BW Threat Agent Detection
and Response program, which seeks to develop modern surveillance, warning, and
response networks and to help secure Russia’s central storage facilities for BW
pathogens. Finally, through Cooperative Biodefense Research, the United States and
Russia are using cooperative research projects to increase transparency and
discourage the “leakage” of Russian biological weapons knowledge to other nations.
Each of these programs is implemented through the International Science and
Technology Centers, because DOD has been unable to conclude implementing
agreements with the relevant ministries in Russia.58 In addition, CTR funding helped
destroy the huge biological weapons production facility in Stepnogorsk, Kazakhstan.
The potential proliferation of biological weapons poses one of the key
challenges for U.S. nonproliferation assistance to Russia.59 According to the General
Accounting Office, progress in gaining Russia’s cooperation and implementing these
projects has been very slow. The United States has found it particularly difficult to
gain access to four key military facilities. The problem is further aggravated by the
fact that Russia is reducing the size of its complex, leaving many scientists
potentially unemployed or underemployed. In addition, biological pathogens are
56 For more details on the BWPP programs, see CRS Report RL31368, Preventing
Proliferation of Biological Weapons: U.S. Assistance to the Former Soviet States, by
Michelle Stem Cook and Amy F. Woolf.
57 U.S. General Accounting Office. Weapons of Mass Destruction: Additional Russian
Cooperation Needed to Facilitate U.S. Efforts to Improve Security at Russian Sites. GAO-
58 Ibid. p. 54.
59 “The security of existing pathogen libraries, the past scope of work, the current
whereabouts of BW and BW-related experts, and the future disposition of the FSU
biological weapons capability are all critical concerns within the threat reduction agenda.”
Reshaping U.S.-Russian Threat Reduction: New Approaches for the Second Decade.
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and Russian American Nuclear Security
Advisory Council. November 2002. p. 2.
small and easily transported, further increasing the proliferation risk.60 The Bush
Administration has expressed its support for these efforts and is in the process of
Between FY1997 and FY2005, DOD appropriated around $280 million for
these projects.The Bush Administration requested $54.2 million for these programs
in FY2004. Congress approved this amount but attached some restrictions to the
funding. In its version of the FY2004 Defense Authorization Bill (H.R. 1588), the
House had sought to prohibit funding cooperative research at any site in the Soviet
Union until the Secretary of Defense could certify that the site did not house any
prohibited biological weapons research, until the facility had conducted an
assessment of its vulnerability to the loss or theft of pathogens and until it had begun
to implement measures to reduce its vulnerability to the loss or theft of biological
agents. The Conference Committee modified this measure, stating that CTR could
not fund cooperative research at a facility until the Secretary of Defense determines
that no prohibited research occurs at the facility and until the facility plans to
implement appropriate security measures. It also permitted the use of up to 25% of
the funds authorized for the project to be expended on making these determinations.
The Bush Administration requested, and Congress authorized, a similar amount
— $55 million — for biological weapons proliferation prevention in FY2005.
However, within this total, the Administration shifted funding away from
Cooperative Biodefense Research projects, reducing this area from $36.6 million in
FY2004 to $13.1 million in FY2005, towards bio-security and bio-safety efforts.
This shift reflected, in part, the congressional concerns with possible U.S. support for
ongoing Russian biological weapons programs. It also derived from the
Administration’s plans to expand U.S. bio-safety and bio-security assistance into
facilities in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan and Georgia.61 The Bush Administration
requested, and Congress approved, an additional $60.8 million for BW proliferation
prevention in FY2006. It requested an additional $68.4 million for FY2007, and the
This legislation also mandated that the National Academy of Sciences pursue a study
that would analyze the challenges and identify opportunities for further cooperation
between Russian and the United States on biological weapons proliferation
The Bush Administration requested $144.5 million for Biological Weapons
Threat Reduction programs in FY2008, with the funding split between Biosecurity,
Biosafety, and Threat Agent Detection and Response ($125.75 million) and
Cooperative Biological Research ($18.75 million). This request represents a
significant expansion in U.S. biological weapons nonproliferation assistance for the
Soviet Union and reflects growing concerns about the threat of biological weapons
proliferation. But some believe this increase may not be sufficient. Senator Richard
60 U.S. General Accounting Office. Weapons of Mass Destruction: Additional Russian
Cooperation Needed to Facilitate U.S. Efforts to Improve Security at Russian Sites. GAO-
61 Hoehn, William. Preliminary Analysis of U.S. Department of Defense’s Fiscal Year 2005
Cooperative Threat Reduction Budget Request. RANSAC. February 10, 2004.
Lugar sought to add $100 million for the CTR program in FY2008, with the express
purpose of expanding and accelerating biological weapons nonproliferation
programs.62 The Senate reduced this amount but still added $50 million to the
program for FY2008. According to the Senate Armed Services Committee Report
on the bill (S.Rept. 110-77), this funding would support programs throughout the
former Soviet Union and accelerate high-priority efforts. The committee also
requested that the National Academy of Sciences prepare a report on how the United
States might cooperate with other nations in preventing the proliferation of biological
weapons. The Conference Committee (H.Rept. 110-477) authorized $$158.5 million
for this program area and retained the request for a study by the National Academy
The Administration has further increased the request for BWTR program in
FY2009 to $184.5 million. As in FY2008, these funds are to be split between
Biosecurity, Biosafety, and Threat Agent Detection and Response ($160 million) and
Cooperative Biological Research ($24.4 million).
Demilitarization Programs. Demilitarization programs include projects that
are encouraging Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan to convert military efforts
to peaceful purposes. The International Science and Technology Center, which
provides grants to Russian weapons scientists and supports cooperative research
with biological weapons scientists, began with funding in this category. Funds for
demilitarization also support Defense and Military contacts between officers in the
United States and those in the former Soviet republics. According to DOD, these
contacts between the defense establishments help “promote counter-proliferation,
demilitarization, and democratic reforms.”63 This program includes representatives
from Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.
DOD has appropriated just over $100 million for Defense and Military contacts over
the life of the CTR program; the Bush Administration requested, and Congress
approved, an additional $11 million for FY2004, $8 million for FY2005, and $8
million for FY2006. Congress also approved the Administration’s request of $8
million for FY2007. The request for FY2008 and FY2009 remained the same, at $8
The Bush Administration added a new demilitarization program in FY2003.
Through the WMD Proliferation Prevention Program, the United States is
cooperating with the military establishments, internal security forces, border guards,
and custom forces in Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, and Azerbaijan to improve
their border controls. In FY2006, Moldava joined the effort, with funding provided
to begin developing its border control and monitoring systems. This program is
intended to help these nations deter, detect, and interrupt the unauthorized movement
62 Lugar Wants $100 Million Nunn-Lugar Budget Increase. Press Release. Office of
Senator Richard Lugar. February 5, 2007.
63 U.S. Department of Defense. Fiscal Year 2004/2005 Biennial Budget Estimates. Former
Soviet Union Threat Reduction Appropriation. February 2003. p. 6.
of weapons or related materials across their borders.64 Congress appropriated $40
million for this program in FY2003; the Bush Administration requested $39.4 million
in FY2004 but received only $29 million. It requested, and Congress authorized, an
additional $40 million for FY2005 and $40.6 million in FY2006. It requested and
received an additional $37.5 million for this program in FY2007. The budget request
for FY2008 included $37.9 million for this program. The House has approved this
request, but the Senate added $14 million, for a total of $51 million. The Conference
Committee approved nearly $48 million. It also allocated the $10 million that
Congress approved for new initiatives to projects in this program area outside the
former Soviet Union. For FY2009, the Administration has requested $50.3 million
for WMD proliferation prevention programs in the former Soviet Union.
The State Department has played an integral role in U.S. nonproliferation and
threat reduction programs since their inception. It has taken the lead in negotiating
the broad agreements needed before recipient nations can receive U.S. assistance and
in providing for broad policy coordination among the U.S. agencies and between the
United States and recipient nations. The State Department also manages the
Nonproliferation and Disarmament Fund (NDF), which it can use to help nations
address problems with proliferation-prone weapons located on their territories.
Congress appropriated approximately $15 million for this fund each year between
1993 and 2003. The Bush Administration requested, and Congress approved, $35
million for NDF in FY2004, $31.7 million in FY2005, and $37.5 million in FY2006.
It requested $38 million in FY2007 and $30 million for FY2008, with Congress
appropriating $37 million and $33.7 million for those years, respectively. The
Administration has requested an additional $40 million for th NDF in FY2009. The
Administration plans to expand U.S. efforts to help countries establish better65
accounting and control mechanisms for nuclear, chemical, and biological materials.
According to John Wolf, the former Assistant Secretary of State for Nonproliferation,
the State Department also planed to use these funds to “focus on unanticipated
opportunities to eliminate missile systems, chemical agents, and to secure orphaned66
radiological sources.” For example, funding from this program contributed to the
U.S. effort to eliminate Libya’s WMD infrastructure and to help redirect weapons
scientists in Libya and Iraq. The State Department spent a total of around $38.5
million from this fund between FY1996 and FY2002 in the former Soviet Union.67
64 Ibid. p. 10.
65 U.S. Senate. Committee on Foreign Relations. Testimony of John S. Wolf. Assistant
Secretary of State for Nonproliferation. March 19, 2003.
66 U.S. House. Committee on International Relations. Subcommittees on Europe and
International Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Human Rights of the House Committee on
International Relations Hearing on U.S. Cooperative Threat Reduction and Nonproliferation
Programs. May 8, 2003.
67 Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by
Matthew Bunn et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003
The State Department also manages and funds the International Science and
Technology Center (ISTC) in Moscow and its companion Science and Technology
Center (STCU) in Kiev, Ukraine. In the FY2005 budget request, it combined these
centers and the biological weapons redirect program into a new category, called
Nonproliferation of WMD expertise. The State Department also manages the Export
Control and Related Border Security Assistance (EXBS) Program. The following
discussion provides more detail about these two program areas.68
Nonproliferation of WMD Expertise
(Science and Technology Centers)
After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, many experts feared that
scientists from Russia’s nuclear weapons complex might sell their knowledge to
other nations seeking nuclear weapons. Many of these scientists had worked in the
Soviet Union’s “closed” nuclear cities, where they had enjoyed relatively high
salaries and prestige, but their jobs evaporated during Russia’s economic and
political crises in the early 1990s. Even those scientists who retained their jobs saw
their incomes decline sharply as Russia was unable to pay their salaries for months
at a time.
In late 1992, the United States, Japan, the European Union, and Russia
established the International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) in Moscow.
Several other former Soviet states joined the center during the 1990s, and other
nations, including Norway and South Korea, added their financial support. In late
1993, the United States, Canada, Sweden, and Ukraine established the Science and
Technology Center in Ukraine (STCU). Several former Soviet states have also
joined this center, and Japan has joined to provide financial support. In its review of
U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance, the Bush Administration cited
these centers for their achievements and indicated that it planned to expand them.
The State Department has stated that, between 1994 and late 2002, about 50,000
scientists and engineers participated in research funded by these centers. The
Moscow Center funded nearly 1,700 projects that engaged about 41,000 scientists.
In 2001, the ISTC in Moscow supported more than 22,000 scientists with more than
$29 million in direct grants.69 In FY2005, the ISTC received new project funding of
$51.3 million, with $21.5 million provided by ISTC “partners,” organizations or
corporations outside government that help fund ISTC programs. The ISTC made
grants of $43.9 million to nearly 25,000 scientists.
The centers fund scientists who have worked on nuclear, chemical, and
biological weapons, but they have, historically, focused on nuclear scientists, with
many projects going to those who work at institutes in the closed nuclear cities. The
State Department estimates that about half of the participants are senior scientists,
which means the programs may have reached a significant portion of the estimated
68 For a more details see Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and
Action Plan, by Matthew Bunn et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
However, most of these scientists spend fewer than 50 days per year on projects
funded by the science centers. In the remainder of the time, most continue to work
at their primary jobs. In addition, some of the grants go to research institutes in
Russia, rather than directly to scientists, and some of these funds may be used for
administrative or management purposes. Nevertheless, the income earned from even
short-term research projects may undermine incentives these individuals might
otherwise encounter to sell their knowledge to potential proliferant nations.
The Science Centers also sponsor a Partners Program, through which private
industry, universities, and other government agencies can provide funding for and
establish contacts with former Soviet scientists. The program started small, with
about 30 partners and $5 million in projects in 1997; it had grown to 166 partners
supporting over 100 projects worth $31 million in 2002. This represented one
quarter of the grant funding provided by the science centers in 2002.70 In FY2005,
the Partner Program supported provided $21.5 million.
As of early November 2002, the ISTC in Moscow had received $481 million
from its participating nations, with the United States providing about $171 million
of this total. The STCU in Kiev had received about $60.5 million, with the United
States providing about $45 million of this total. The United States has also provided
around $70 million to the ISTC since FY1998 to support the Biological Weapons
Redirection Program.71 This program provides research grants to Russian
biotechnology institutes to redirect scientists to commercial, agricultural, and public
health projects. The State Department collaborates with several other U.S. agencies
in this program.72 In recent years, it has begun to shift grant funding away from
Russia’s nuclear scientists to biological and chemical weapons scientists, thus re-
naming the program the Bio-Chem Redirection program, and to scientists from other
former Soviet states. Further, it expects this decline in funding to force the ISTC to
focus more on “graduating scientists” from U.S. assistance to projects with more
commercial viability.73 The State Department operates a third program within this
category, known as the Bio Industry Initiative (BII). This initiative, which began in
2002, seeks to help Russia reconfigure its large-scale former BW-related facilities so
that they can perform peaceful research issues such as infectious diseases.
For FY2004, the Bush Administration requested $59 million for the science
centers and BW redirection programs, and received about 50.2 million. It did not
identify the precise funding for either of the two. In its FY2005 budget, it requested
$50.5 million, with about $30.5 million going to the science centers, $17 million
72 For more details, see CRS Report RL31368, Preventing Proliferation of Biological
Weapons: U.S. Assistance to the Former Soviet States, by Michelle Stem Cook and Amy F.
73 U.S. Department of State. FY2004 Congressional Budget Justification for Foreign
Operations. p. 370.
going to the Bio-Chem Redirect program, and $3 million going to the BII.74
Congress approved the Bush Administration’s budget request for this program area
in FY2006, appropriating $52.6 million. However, a declining proportion of the
budget is likely to be spent on programs in the former Soviet Union, as this program
is expanding to help redirect scientists in Libya and Iraq.
The Bush Administration requested 22.7 million for the Science Centers in its
FY2007 budget. It also requested $17 million for the Bio-Chem Redirect program
and $13 million for the Bio-Industry Initiative. This total of $52.7 million will be
spent primarily in the former Soviet states. The Administration has requested $2.5
million for the scientist redirection program in Iraq and $1 million for the program
in Libya.75 It requested an total of $53.5 million for these two program areas in
FY2008 and $64 million in FY2009.
Analysts have raised numerous questions about the science center programs.
One of the first critiques came from the General Accounting Office, in a study
published in 1995. GAO found that some scientists who received grants from the
ISTC “may also continue to be employed by institutes engaged in weapons work.”76
GAO interpreted this finding to mean that the centers had not succeeded in
redirecting weapons scientists to peaceful endeavors. Other critics of the CTR
program claimed that GAO’s findings indicated that, by supporting Russian weapons
scientists, U.S. funds were supporting Russian weapons programs. The State
Department disputed both of these conclusions, noting that the grants from the ISTC
were intended to supplement, not replace, the scientists’ income from work in other
institutes. And, in the years since this report, the State Department has enhanced its
auditing procedures to ensure that ISTC grants support the assigned projects and do
not support work on Russian weapons.
Analysts have also noted that the ISTC and STCU do not have enough money
to support full pay for a significant number of scientists. Consequently, some have
questioned whether the centers achieve their objective of keeping these scientists
away from nations or groups seeking weapons of mass destruction. Others, however,
note that, even if the financial support is less than complete, the cooperation with
Russian institutes, and the promise of a fairly steady stream of funding, helps build
relationships and draw these institutes into the “western orbit.”77 To address this
problem, some have suggested that, instead of providing short-term grants, the
centers should focus on projects that will lead to the long-term redirection of
scientists out of weapons work. The State Department seems to agree with this
74 U.S. Department of State. FY2006 Congressional Budget Justification for Foreign
Operations. p. 135.
75 U.S. Department of State. U.S. Department of State. FY2005 Congressional Budget
Justification for Foreign Operations. pp. 135, 140-144.
76 U.S. General Accounting Office. Weapons of Mass Destruction, Reducing the Threat
From the Former Soviet Union: An Update. GAO/NSIAD-95-165, June 1995. Washington,
DC. p. 27.
77 Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by
Matthew Bunn et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
approach, with its growing reliance on the Partners Program and its acknowledged
need to transition Russia’s nuclear scientists to more commercially viable projects.
Export Control and Related Border Security Assistance
Many view the potential for smuggling or illegal exports of materials and
technology from the former Soviet Union as a key proliferation concern. The
collapse of political control along the Soviet borders, along with incentives created
by the weakness in the economies of the newly independent states, contributes to this
growing concern. The State Department’s Export Control and Related Border
Security Assistance (EXBS) program helps the former Soviet states and other nations
improve their ability to interdict nuclear smuggling and stop the illicit trafficking of
all materials for weapons of mass destruction, along with dual use goods and
technologies. The EXBS program currently has projects underway in more than 30
nations and is expanding its reach around the globe.78
When designing a nation-specific plan for border control assistance, the United
States seeks to address four key areas. First, if needed, it helps the recipient nation
establish the legal and regulatory basis for effective export controls. It then helps the
nation develop appropriate export licensing procedures and practices. Third, the
United States helps the recipient establish and enhance effective enforcement
capabilities. When needed, it provides the recipient with detection and interdiction
equipment and training. Finally, the United States helps establish procedures that
promote effective interaction between government and industry so that business
entities in the recipient nation will abide by the laws and regulations of the new
export control regime.
The State Department also provides support to border control efforts in DOD’s
CTR program and the DOE’s nonproliferation program. It seeks to coordinate these
and other U.S. efforts to identify and stop the smuggling of nuclear, chemical, and
biological weapons or materials. Analysts inside and outside the government have
questioned, however, whether the coordination has been effective. Consequently, the
National Security Council is leading an effort to develop a government-wide strategic
plan for interdiction assistance, which includes but is not limited to export assistance,
that might help stop the smuggling of weapons of mass destruction.
Between FY1998 and FY2002, the State Department allocated $146 million to
the EXBS program for nations in and around the former Soviet Union.
Approximately $100 million of this amount was allocated to Georgia for its border
security program. Funding for border security in the rest of the former Soviet states
was around $5-$7 million per year, until the State Department added $24.7 million
from the FY2002 supplemental appropriations. In FY2003, the State Department
requested around $17 million for the EXBS program, with an additional $15 million
allocated to the Georgia Border Security Program. Funding declined in FY2004; the
Bush Administration requested $13.9 million for EXBS and an additional $15
million for the Georgia Border Security program. In FY2005, the Bush
78 U.S. Senate. Committee on Foreign Relations. Testimony of John S. Wolf. Assistant
Secretary of State for Nonproliferation. March 19, 2003.
Administration requested a total of $38 million for EXBS, although only around $19
million was allocated to projects in nations in and around the former Soviet Union.
An additional $11.5 million was allocated to “global” efforts, with the remaining $7
million allocated to projects in other nations around the world. This trend continued
in FY2006 and FY2007. The budget request for the EXBS program equals $44.4
million. Congress approved $43.4 million. However, only around $8.5 million of
this amount will go to projects in nations around the former Soviet Union. A far
greater amount, around $19 million, is allocated to nations in other regions such as
South Asia and the Near East. The remainder is allocated to global programs, such
as the provision of advisors and equipment and the development of global regional
export controls. For FY2007, the Bush Administration requested $45.050 million for
the EXBS program; less than $6 million would go to states that were once a part of
the Soviet Union. For FY2008, the total request is $41.3 million, but only around 4.5
million will go to states of the former Soviet Union. For FY2009, the request is for
$42.1 million, with less than $4 million going to states of the former Soviet Union.
Department of Energy
The Department of Energy has contributed to U.S. threat reduction and
nonproliferation assistance to the former Soviet states from the start, when CTR
included a small amount of funding for materials control and protection. Officials
from DOE participated, along with their counterparts at DOD, in early efforts to
outline projects and reach agreement with Russian officials on assistance to secure
nuclear materials. But these government-to-government negotiations proceeded
slowly, in part because Russia’s nuclear energy ministry — known as Minatom at the
time — was less open to cooperation than the Ministry of Defense. Consequently,
projects at facilities that housed nuclear materials did not begin until 1994. In a
parallel effort that sought to reduce these delays, experts from the U.S. nuclear
laboratories, which are a part of DOE, also began less formal contacts with their
counterparts in Russia to identify and solve safety and security problems at Russian
facilities. Together, these government-to-government and lab-to-lab projects evolved
into an effort to apply Material Protection, Control and Accounting (MPC&A)
techniques to Russian facilities.
The MPC&A program began with less than $3 million in FY1993. This amount
grew to $73 million in FY1995. In FY1996, DOE assumed budgetary and
management responsibility for the program. DOE also initiated a second program,
the Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention, which sought to provide employment
opportunities for scientists and engineers from Russia’s nuclear weapons complex.
In the latter half of the 1990s, DOE expanded these efforts and added several other
programs to its nonproliferation assistance. These programs are now managed by
DOE’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). The discussion below79
summarizes the objectives and achievements of many of these efforts.
79 As was the case with the summaries of DOD and State Department programs, these
descriptions do not cover all DOE programs. A complete description of the programs
funded under DOE’s Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Budget can be found in DOE’s
International Nuclear Materials Protection and Cooperation
The International Nuclear Materials Protection and Cooperation program seeks
to “secure nuclear weapons and weapons-usable nuclear materials by upgrading
security at nuclear sites, by consolidating these materials to sites where installation
of enhanced security systems have already been completed, and by improving nuclear
smuggling detection capabilities at international borders.”80 The MPC&A program81
addresses the first of these objectives. The Materials Consolidation and Conversion
Program addresses the second, and the Second Line of Defense (SLD) and Megaports
programs address the third. Each of these is discussed below.
MPC&A Funding. The budget for MPC&A grew rapidly during the 1990s,
reaching $169 million in FY2001, the last year of the Clinton Administration. The
Bush Administration, in its budget request for FY2002, reduced funding for the
MPC&A program to $138.8 million, in part because it believed that the program had
enough unexpended funds from prior years to carry on with less funding. Its first
budget also shifted money from Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Programs to U.S.
nuclear weapons programs. Congress objected to this reduction, and both the Senate
and House Appropriations Committees, in the Energy and Water Appropriations bills
for FY2002, restored funding to the FY2001 level. Furthermore, Congress added
$150 million in a supplemental appropriations bill passed at the end of 2001, after the
September 11 attacks had raised new concerns about the potential threat that
terrorists might seek to acquire nuclear materials from insecure facilities in Russia.
The Bush Administration allocated much of this new funding to the Second Line of
Defense and Radiological Dispersion Devices. But the Bush Administration did
increase its budget request for MPC&A in FY2003, to $223 million, so that it could
accelerate the installation of comprehensive upgrades and material consolidation and82
conversion efforts. The Bush Administration requested $227 million for these
efforts for FY2004; Congress approved $260 million, adding $5 million for “high
priority” activities and $28 million for an initiative under the Second Line of Defense
Program (described below).
The Bush Administration requested $238 million for MPC&A in FY2005. The
reduction from FY2004 to FY2005 reflected, in part, the completion of physical
budget documents. See U.S. Department of Energy. FY2006 Congressional Budget
Request. Detailed Budget Justifications. February 2005. pp. 481-497.
80 U.S. Department of Energy. FY2004 Congressional Budget Request. Detailed Budget
Justifications. February 2003. p. 623.
81 This program area included, for a short time, an effort to identify and secure radiological
sources that could be used to make radiological dispersion devices. In the FY2005 budget
request, this initiative is combined with two others in a single initiative known as
“International Nuclear and Radiological Cleanout.” See 2005 DOE Budget Rollout.
Remarks by Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham. February 2, 2004, Washington, DC.
82 U.S. House. Committee on Appropriations. Statement of Spencer Abraham, Secretary
of Energy. March 6, 2002.
security upgrades at Russian Navy warhead storage sites.83 In the Conference report
on the FY2005 Defense Authorization Bill (H.Rept. 108-767; P.L. 108-375),
Congress authorized the full amount requested by the President. The House had
reduced that amount by around $10 million, citing delays in the program caused by
Russia’s refusal to allow the United States access to some facilities, but the Senate
prevailed in conference. The Appropriations Committee added $84 million to the
MPC&A program, for a total of $322 million. The conference report accompanying
the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2005 (H.Rept. 108-792; P.L. 108-447), notes
that this added funding should be used to accelerate efforts to secure nuclear weapons
sites and nuclear materials production sites in Russia.84
The Bush Administration requested $343.4 million for these programs in
FY2006. Nearly $100 million of this total was allocated to the Second Line of
Defense and Megaports Initiative, leaving approximately $245 million to secure
nuclear materials in Russia. In the FY2006 Defense Authorization Act (P.L.109-163,
H.Rept. 109-360), Congress added approximately $20 million to this total, in part to
accelerate warhead security work at the Strategic Rocket Force facilities. The Energy
and Water Appropriations Committee added $83.6 million to this portion of the DOE
budget, so that DOE could pursue “new opportunities in warhead security work with
In the FY2007 budget, the Bush Administration requested $413.2 million for
MPC&A. Although this exceeds the Administration’s request for FY2006, it falls
below the appropriated amount of $422.7 million. In addition, it includes $124
million for Second Line of Defense and Megaports, leaving $298.7 million to secure
nuclear materials in Russia. Within this total, as is noted below, the Administration
shifted money among the different project areas, as some ongoing projects accelerate
and others move towards their conclusion. Specifically, the budget indicated that
work at the Rosatom complex, which houses most of Russia’s nuclear weapons
materials, would be reduced, while sustainment activities would increase. Congress
did not accept some of these changes, appropriating a total of $472.7 million for this
program area and shifting money among the budget areas, as is noted in more detail
The FY2008 budget request sought a total of $371.7 million for the MPC&A
program areas, with $119.3 million going to the Second line of Defense and
Megaports initiatives. This leaves $251.8 million for the efforts to secure nuclear
warheads and materials in Russia. The DOE budget request also reflects continuing
declines in the MPC&A budget in the outyears, as many of the MPC&A upgrades to
storage facilities are completed and the program switches to sustainment activities.
DOE also noted that Russia has added some Rosatom sites to its list of sites in need
of upgrades; if these are approved, they would also be added to budget and work
effort after FY2008.
83 Hoehn, William. Preliminary Analysis of U.S. Department of Energy’s Fiscal Year 2005
Nonproliferation Budget Request. RANSAC. February 4. 2004.
84 Congressional Record. November 19, 2004. H10558.
Congress increased, in some cases significantly, funding for the MPC&A
programs in the FY2008 Defense Authorization Act (H.Rept. 110-477) and the
FY2008 Omnibus Appropriations Bill (H.R. 2764). For example, the House version
of the FY2008 Defense Authorization Bill (H.R. 1585) included $401 million for
MPC&A, which essentially incorporates $30 million from the FY2008 Supplemental
request into the Authorization Bill. The Senate, for its part, added only $10 million,
authorizing $381.8 million. The Conference Committee added $30 million, with
most of this going to the Second Line of Defense program. On the other hand, the
House Energy and Water Development Subcommittee of the House Appropriations
Committee more than doubled the request for funding for MPC&A, providing $831.8
million (H.Rept. 110-185). The committee noted that this program is on the “front
line” in the global war on terror because it seeks to protect the United States against
a terrorist using a nuclear device on U.S. soil. As is noted below, the committee
added funding in several areas to accelerate work at Russia’s nuclear materials
facilities and warhead storage facilities, and to expand the Second Line of Defense
and Megaports programs. The Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Bill, in
contrast, added only $20 million to this program area (S.Rept. 110-127). The
Omnibus Appropriations Bill for FY2008 includes $624 million MPC&A, with $136
million going to Second Line of Defense and $130.8 million for Megaports (these are
described in more detail below).
The President’s budget for FY2009 requests $429 million for MPC&A
programs. As discussed in more detail below, the budget request for most of the
project areas falls sharply below the amount appropriated in FY2008. These
declines, in most cases, reflect the fact that, with the added funding appropriated in
FY2008, many of the ongoing projects are nearing completion.
Between FY1993 and FY2008, Congress appropriated more $3 billion for the
MPC&A program. With the exception of approximately $380 for the Second Line
of Defense and Megaports program, all of these funds were allocated to efforts to
improve security at nuclear warhead and nuclear material storage facilities in Russia.
NNSA has identified 105 nuclear sites, with 243 buildings, that may need assistance
in improving their security systems. According to NNSA, these sites contain
approximately 600 metric tons of nuclear materials, enough for around 41,000
nuclear warheads. Within this total, 63 sites belong to the Ministry of Defense, (52
warhead storage site and 11 Navy fuel storage sites), 11 are a part of the Minatom
(now known as Rosatom)85 weapons complex, and 31 are civilian sites. More than
MPC&A Projects. DOE provides MPC&A assistance at Russian facilities in
two phases. First, it installs rapid upgrades that are designed to delay unauthorized
85 Russia reorganized its government entities, beginning in March 2004. MINATOM, the
Ministry of Atomic Energy, was redesignated as the Federal Agency for Atomic Energy, or
Rosatom. Rosatom is still the primary agency responsible for nuclear weapons. See
Matthew Bouldin. Updated Analysis. Russian Government Restructuring and the Future
of WMD Threat Reduction Cooperation. RANSAC. May 2004.
86 U.S. Department of Energy. FY2004 Congressional Budget Request. Detailed Budget
Justifications. February 2003. p. 625.
access to the storage facilities. These may include the installation of hardened doors
and windows, locks and keys to control access, perimeter fences, and moveable
barriers at entry points. The second phase provides comprehensive upgrades that are
tailored to meet the security needs at each individual facility. These may include
monitoring and detection systems, the relocation of guard forces, the consolidation
of materials, central alarm systems, and electronic access control systems. DOE has
helped improve security at sites that house considerably more than half of the former
Soviet Union’s 600 metric tons of weapons-usable nuclear materials.87 In 2006, DOE
altered the way in which it measures progress in these programs, focusing on the
percentage of facilities that had received upgrades, rather than the percentage of
materials that were captured by the upgrades. By the end of 2006, DOE had
completed rapid upgrades at about 81% of the 215 facilities housing this material and
comprehensive upgrades at about 63% of these facilities.88 DOE reported that, by
September of 2007, it had completed upgrades at nearly 90%, or 193, of the
When the upgrades are complete, DOE plans to continue “sustainability efforts”
to ensure that the upgrades remain effective in the long term. This program, titled
National Programs and Sustainability, seeks to create regulations, reporting
requirements, training and maintenance facilities, and other infrastructure
components to ensure that Russia can continue to operate its new security systems.89
In the FY2005 budget request, DOE reduced funding for this initiative from $41
million appropriated in FY2005 to $30 million, continuing a trend of preceding years.
DOE noted in 2004 that funding in this area had declined because DOE altered it
priorities to support increased funding for MPC&A activities in countries outside the
former Soviet Union.90 The Administration requested $48.1 million for this project
area in FY2007, but Congress appropriated only $29.7 million. The Administration
requested $45.6 million in FY2008, and Congress appropriated nearly $70 million.
The Administration has requested $59.3 million for FY2009.
Navy Complex. DOE has provided assistance to Russia’s Navy by improving
security at 39 naval nuclear warhead storage sites and 11 nuclear fuel storage sites.
These sites house approximately 60 metric tons of weapons-useable nuclear materials
and 4,000 nuclear warheads. According to DOE, it had completed rapid and
comprehensive upgrades at all naval nuclear fuel storage sites by the end of 2004,
87 U.S. Senate. Committee on Foreign Relations. Statement of Ambassador Linton Brooks.
Administrator, NNSA. June 15, 2004. See also, U.S. General Accounting Office. Weapons
of Mass Destruction. Additional Russian Cooperation Needed to Facilitate U.S. Efforts to
Improve Security at Russian Sites. GA)-03-482. Washington, March 2003. p. 4. See also,
U.S. Senate, Committee on Armed Services. Statement of Paul M. Longsworth. Deputy
Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation. March 10, 2004. (Herein after referred
to as Longsworth Testimony.)
88 Bunn, Matthew. Securing the Bomb2007. Project on Managing the Atom.
Commissioned by the Nuclear Threat Initiative. September 2007. p. 65.
89 For more details see U.S. Department of Energy. FY2004 Congressional Budget Request.
Detailed Budget Justifications. February 2003. p. 655.
90 Hoehn, William. Preliminary Analysis of U.S. Department of Energy’s Fiscal Year 2005
Nonproliferation Budget Request. RANSAC. February 4. 2004
and had completed the comprehensive upgrades at the last two warhead sites in
FY2006. The FY2006 budget request included $6.5 million for this program area,
a reduction that reflected the completion of much of the work. However, in response
to the U.S. and Russian commitment at the Bratislava summit to accelerate work on
warhead storage security, Congress approved $16 million for the Navy complex sites
in FY2006. The Bush Administration requested an additional $17.3 million in
FY2007; the House and Senate Armed Services Committees approved this request.
The FY2008 budget requests, and Congress appropriated, $13.4 million for this
project area. The FY2009 budget request includes $16.4 million. These funds, and
the funds appropriated in FY2007 and FY2008, will be used to provide
“sustainability support” at the sites, which includes training and site level
maintenance on the equipment at the sites.
Strategic Rocket Forces. DOE has complete security upgrades at warhead
storage sites for Russia’s strategic rocket forces. The United States has approved
upgrades at 25 sites on 11 SRF bases; work on these sites was completed in late91
October 2007, nearly two years ahead of schedule. It is also upgrading security at
nine sites under the command of the 12 Main Directorate, the branch of Russia’s
Ministry of Defense responsible for warhead security and maintenance. It plans to
complete the work on upgrades at these sites in FY2009. DOE requested $47.5
million to continue these activities in FY2006. The Defense Authorization Bill (P.L.
109-163) increased this total by $10 million, and the Energy and Water
Appropriations Bill increased it by $86 million. Consequently, the FY2006
appropriation for this project area was $120.2 million. The Bush Administration
requested, and Congress approved, $129.3 million for this project area in FY2007.
The FY2008 budget request included $91.5 million for this project area. The decline
in the request reflected the fact that the accelerated pace of the last few years had
brought some of the sites close to completion. Congress, however, appropriated
$121.9 million for this project area. The FY2009 budget requests only $53.6 million,
with the decline again reflecting the completion of most of the work on upgrades.
DOE has stated that the FY2009 budget will support sustainment activities at all
Rosatom Weapons Complex. Work at Russia’s nuclear weapons complex,
managed by the newly organized Rosatom, consists of seven sites and four
“Enterprises of the Nuclear Weapons Complex” in Russia’s nine closed nuclear
cities. The buildings in this complex house around 500 metric tons of “highly
attractive” weapons-useable materials.92 DOE has completed rapid upgrades on
buildings that house about 60% of these materials and comprehensive upgrades on
buildings that house another 25% of these materials. By the end of 2006, DOE had
completed work on 92 buildings in the Rosatom complex. The pace of work at these
facilities has accelerated, with increased funding and increased cooperation from
Russia, during the past few years. DOE hopes to install security upgrades at all these
facilities by 2008. DOE has stated that an access agreement signed in 2001 has
“allowed significant access and acceleration of physical protection systems ... at these
91 Chivers, C.J. Securing Russian Nuclear Missiles? U.S. Is Set to Say “Done.” New York
Times, October 31, 2007.
92 Ibid. p. 639.
large facilities.”93 In addition, Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham reported that,
in numerous meetings with Russia’s Minister of Atomic Energy, Alexander
Rumyantsev, he worked “to accelerate and expand our programs” and to “clear away
the bureaucratic obstacles.”94
The FY2006 budget requested $86 million for this program area, a steep
increase from the $18.7 million appropriated in FY2004 and a slight reduction from
the $88 million appropriated in FY2005. Congress approved this request. The
FY2007 budget requested only $56.5 million for this program area. DOE noted that
the reduction reflected the completion of many of the projects that were accelerated
over the past few years. The House and Senate Armed Services Committees both
approved this request. The House Energy and Water Development Appropriations
Committee, however, increased this request by $65 million, for a total of $121.5
million for FY2007; the final appropriation was $85 million. The FY2008 budget
requested $60.1 million for this project area. Congress again increased the funding,
appropriating $79.1 million. The FY2009 budget request shows a steep decline, with
the Administration requesting only $32.3 million. This reduction, again, reflects the
completion of many projects that were accelerated over the last few years. DOE has
indicated that, in FY2009, the majority of the continuing work will occur at the sites
at Mayak, Arzamas-16, and Chelyabinsk-70.
Civilian Nuclear Sites. DOE has assisted with the installation of security
upgrades at 31 civilian nuclear sites throughout the former Soviet Union. These are
mainly research facilities that operate nuclear reactors. According to DOE, these sites
contain around 40 metric tons of weapons-useable materials. DOE has already
completed rapid and comprehensive upgrades at most of these facilities; it had
planned to complete the comprehensive upgrades at facilities housing the final 5%
of nuclear materials during FY2006, but this schedule slipped, and they are now due
to be completed in FY2008. It also plans to expand its efforts to secure weapons-
useable nuclear materials at civilian facilities outside the former Soviet Union. DOE
has requested, and Congress approved, $47 million for this effort in FY2006, a
substantial increase over the $14.6 million appropriated in FY2005. The Bush
Administration requested only $21.2 million for this program area in FY2007. DOE
noted that the decrease reflects the completion of initial upgrades at a facility outside
the former Soviet Union. Congress, however, appropriated $52.7 million for this
program area. The Bush Administration has requested $22.2 million for this effort
in FY2008, but Congress again increased the funding, appropriating $54.2 million.
The Administration has requested $34.5 million for FY2009. DOE indicates that this
funding will help foster “site capabilities” to operate and maintain the equipment and
will provide sustainability support at the 19 sites with completed upgrades.
Material Consolidation and Conversion. In addition to securing sites that
house nuclear materials, the MPC&A program is providing Russia and the other
93 U.S. Department of Energy. FY2004 Congressional Budget Request. Detailed Budget
Justifications. February 2003. p. 639.
94 “The FY2004 Nonproliferation Budget: Supporting the Ten Principles for Nuclear and
Radiological Materials Security.” Remarks by Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham. Center
for Strategic and International Studies. Washington, DC. February 10, 2003.
former Soviet states with assistance in consolidating these materials in fewer
facilities and converting them to forms that might be less attractive to nations seeking
materials for nuclear weapons. By the end of FY2003, DOE had planned to remove
nuclear materials from about 40% of the 55 buildings that will eventually be cleared
of this material. It also plans to convert about 17 metric tons of highly enriched
uranium and low enriched uranium by 2012. DOE requested $28 million for this
effort in its budget for FY2006. Congress added $10 million to this request in the
FY2006 Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 109-163). The Administration requested
an additional $16.8 million for this program area in FY2007. DOE reports that the
decrease is due to a slow-down in the availability of highly enriched uranium, which
is blended down to low enriched uranium with funds in this area. The Senate Armed
Services Committee approved this request, but the House increased it to $21.8
million. The final amount approved for FY2007 was $27.7 million, reflecting
increases in the appropriations process. The FY2008 budget request included $19.7
million for this project area; Congress appropriated this amount. The budget request
for FY2009 includes $20.9 million.
National Programs and Sustainability. The MPC&A budget also
supports an effort to build an infrastructure within Russia that can operate effectively
and be sustained in the recipient nations after the initial and comprehensive upgrades
are complete. These efforts include developing regulations, inspection capabilities,
site safeguards, security programs, and other accounting capabilities. The program
will operate regional technical support facilities that can repair and maintain
equipment and develop training programs for participants. Congress appropriated
nearly $40 million for this effort in FY2006 and $65.1 million in FY2007. The
Administration requested $45.6 million for FY2008, but Congress increased this
amount to $69.6 million. The Administration has requested $59.3 million in
Radiological Dispersion Devices. In the wake of the September 11
attacks, many analysts have expressed growing concerns about the possibility that
terrorists might acquire nuclear materials that could be used in a “dirty bomb.”
Although such a device would not explode with a nuclear yield, it could, nonetheless,
spread radiological debris across a wide area. Many nations around the world have
nuclear materials at research facilities, hospitals, or power plants that could be used
in a dirty bomb. But most analysts agree that the states of the former Soviet Union
pose a greater threat in this regard, particularly since the Soviet Union left devices
with radioactive materials scattered across its territory. According to Spencer
Abraham, the Secretary of Energy, “more attention is being paid to the risks
associated with the misuse of radiological materials” because they are much “more95
abundant and much less secure” than weapons-grade materials. Consequently,
DOE developed a program to identify these sites, set priorities, and begin security
upgrades. This program received its initial funding in FY2002, with $20 million
allocated from the $150 million Congress added to the MPC&A program in the
Supplemental Appropriations (P.L. 107-206) passed after the September 11 attacks.
95 Remarks by Spencer Abraham, Secretary of Energy. Carnegie Endowment for
International Peace. International Nonproliferation Conference. November 14 , 2002
DOE identified 35 nuclear waste sites in Russia and the other former Soviet
states that posed a threat for the theft or sale of nuclear materials. These states also
have radiological sources at agricultural research institutes, research reactors, medical
facilities, intelligence sites, and defense facilities.96 DOE is also working with the
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to identify and secure facilities that may
house these materials in other nations. In FY2005, DOE received around $24.8
million for this effort. In the FY2006 budget, DOE moved this program to the
Global Threat Reduction Initiative portion of its program and requested an additional
$24 million. It requested $18.3 million for International radiological threat reduction
in FY2007 and $6 million in FY2008; this program no longer focuses exclusively on
sites in the former Soviet Union.
Second Line of Defense. Through its Second Line of Defense Program,
DOE contributes to U.S. efforts to help the former Soviet states detect and intercept
attempts to smuggle nuclear materials out of the country. DOE has begun to install
radiation detection equipment systems at strategic “transit and border sites.” By the
end of FY2006, the program had installed equipment at more than 150 sites and
planned to add 51 more sites in FY2007. According to DOE, it plans to add 49 sites
in FY2009. However, a growing number of these sites are outside the former Soviet
Union. DOE also plans to provide training and communications equipment to border
control agents to help them implement the plan. This program began in FY1998 and
received less than $3 million per year for several years. However, the budget
increased to $46 million, and the effort expanded significantly with funding provided
under the FY2002 supplemental appropriations (P.L. 107-206). DOE requested, and
Congress approved, $24 million for the core program of Second Line of Defense in
Congress also added $28 million in FY2004 for a project known as the
Megaports initiative. This project is developing and deploying radiation detectors
for use at the largest foreign seaports that handle about 70% of the container traffic97
headed for the United States. Megaports is designed “to detect the trafficking of
nuclear or radioactive materials in the world’s busiest seaports.” According to
former Secretary of Energy Abraham, DOE hopes to install detection equipment at
seaports around the globe. The Administration requested $15 million for this
program in FY2005 and $73.9 million for this program in FY2006. This funding is
included in International Nuclear Materials and Protection portion of the budget,
even though it is not intended for use in the former Soviet Union. As a result, it is
not included in this report’s DOE totals for nonproliferation projects in the former
Soviet Union. It is worth noting, however, that the increase in Megaports for
FY2006 exceeded the increase in the entire International Nuclear Materials and
Protection portion of the budget, signalling a shift in funding out of the former Soviet
Union and into projects in other nations.
96 U.S. Department of Energy. FY2004 Congressional Budget Request. Detailed Budget
Justifications. February 2003. p. 649.
97 Hoehn, William. Update on Legislation Affecting U.S-Former Soviet Union
Nonproliferation and Threat Reduction. RANSAC. November 17, 2003.
The Bush Administration requested a total of $124 million for Second Line of
Defense and Megaports in FY2007. This was an increase of $27 million over the
combined budget for the two programs in FY2006. But it also contained a significant
shift, with $84 million allocated to Second Line of Defense and only $40 million
allocated to Megaports. The increase in SLD reflects the acceleration of efforts to
install radiation detection equipment at sites in the Caucuses region, while the
decrease in Megaports is attributed to the completion of the installation of radiation
detection equipment at five ports in 2006. The House and Senate Armed Services
Committee approved the authorization request for SLD; the House Energy and Water
Appropriations Committee added $40 million, for a total of $123.9 million. For
Megaports, the Senate Armed Services approved the Administration’s request, the
House added $15 million to the authorization request, and the Energy and Water
Appropriations Committee added $60 million, for a total of $105.1 million. The
appropriators noted that this added funding should be used to expand work at high-
risk foreign ports. It reflects a growing concern in Congress with port security issues.
The FY2007 budget requested $119.3 million for the Second Line of Defense
Program, with $72.5 million allocated to the Core program and $46.8 million
allocated to Megaports. However, Congress appropriated $191.9 million in FY2007,
with $116.1 million going to Megaports. In FY2008, Congress appropriated $266.9
million, with $136 million going to the core program and $130.8 million going to
Megaports. These increases indicated that Congress has placed a high priority on
detecting possible efforts to smuggle nuclear materials. In its request for FY2009,
the Administration is seeking $212 million for SLD, with $78.5 million going to the
core program and $134 million going to Megaports.
Table 5, below, displays the funding history for many of these International
Nuclear Materials and Cooperation programs. It aggregates the funding for the years
between FY2002 and FY2005, then demonstrates how the budgets have evolved
through the appropriations for FY2006, FY2007, and FY2008. The table
demonstrates that funding for SLD, much of which is not spent in the former Soviet
Union, has increased sharply in the past few years. In addition, much of the funding
in recent years has gone to programs to secure warheads and Navy and SRF sites and
materials at Rosatom sites. As these programs wind down and wrap up in the next
few years, MPC&A funding, and DOE’s contribution to cooperative nonproliferation
programs in Russia, could decline significantly.
Table 5. Appropriations for M.C.&A and Related Programs
(in $ millions)
P r ogram F Y 2002-F Y 2005 F Y 2006 F Y 2007 F Y 2008 F Y 2009(req)
Material $109.0 $27.7 $23.8 $19.5 $20.9
Second Line of$127.2$24.0$75.8$136.0$78.6
Tot a l $983.6 $350.0 $481.5 $493.5 $295.7
Source: U.S. Department of Energy. FY2004, FY2005, FY2006, FY2007 Congressional Budget
Requests. Detailed Budget Justifications.
a. This does not include funding for Megaports, which received $24 million in FY2004, $15 million
in FY2005, $73.9 million in FY2006, $116.1 million in FY2007, and $130.8 million in FY2008.
Global Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention
(formerly Russian Transition Initiative)
In its budget request for FY2006, DOE renamed the Russian Transition
Initiative, referring to it as the Global Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention. The
program also moved to the “Nonproliferation and International Security” portion of
the DOE Nonproliferation budget. These changes reflect the fact that DOE can now
spend funds from this program in nations outside the former Soviet Union, such as
in Libya and Iraq.
The Russian Transition Initiative had combined two previous DOE programs,
the Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention and the Nuclear Cities Initiative, that
sought to stop the leakage of knowledge out of Russia’s nuclear weapons complex
to states or groups seeking their own nuclear weapons. According to DOE, these
programs were designed to help Russia reduce the size of its nuclear weapons
complex, by removing functions and equipment, and to create “sustainable non-
weapons-related work” for scientists through technology projects that have
“commercially-viable market opportunities.”98 The Bush Administration has stated
that it hopes to expand the program from engaging only nuclear scientists to also
engaging biological and chemical weapons scientists. It requested funding to expand
the program to two chemical weapons institutes in FY2004.
Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention. The Initiatives for Proliferation
Prevention (IPP) Program began in 1994. IPP has matched U.S. weapons labs and
U.S. industry with Russian scientists and engineers in cooperative research projects
with “high commercial potential.” DOE claims that this focus on commercialization
will help make the projects self-sustaining in the long term. The IPP program
received $35 million in the FY1994 Foreign Operations Appropriations Act, before
its funding moved to the Department of Energy. This initial funding helped establish
nearly 200 research projects by 1995. Between FY1996 and FY2003, IAP received
an additional $194 million. In FY2004, the Bush Administration requested around
$23 million for projects funded through IPP, as a part of the overall request of $39.3
million for the Russian Transition Initiative. Congress approved this request.
The IPP program was the subject of review and criticism in a GAO study
released in February 1999. The report noted that nearly half of the funds
appropriated for the IAP program had been spent at the U.S. nuclear weapons labs
and that, after subtracting the taxes, fees, and other charges removed by Russian
officials, the Russian institutes had received only around one-third of the funds. The
report also questioned DOE’s oversight of the programs, noting that program
officials did not always know how many scientists were receiving IAP funding. The
report noted that the projects had not yet produced any commercial successes. DOE
responded by stating that IAP had temporarily employed thousands of scientists in
around 170 institutes. DOE also stated that the program did not subsidize scientists
who were performing weapons-related work. Nevertheless, in FY2000, Congress
reduced the Clinton Administration’s request for funding for the IAP program from
$30 million to $25 million and specified that no more than 35% of the funds be spent
at the U.S. labs. It also mandated that the United States negotiate agreements with
Russia to ensure that funds provided under this program are not subject to taxes in
Russia. Furthermore, it requested that the Secretary of Energy review IAP programs
for their commercialization potential.
The IPP Program was once again the subject of a critical GAO report in late99
2007. This report noted that DOE had overstated the number of scientists receiving
support from this program by counting both weapons and non-weapons scientists in
its totals. It also argues that DOE has overstated the number of long-term private
sector jobs created as a result of this program, mostly because it does not have an
independent way to confirm the reported number. Further, DOE does not have an
exist strategy for the program, or a way to “graduate” institutes once they are self-
sustaining or no longer pose a proliferation threat. This report has raised, anew,
questions about the current value and future worthiness of the program.
98 U.S. Department of Energy. FY2004 Congressional Budget Request. Detailed Budget
Justifications. February 2003. p. 663.
99 U.S. Government Accountability Office. DOE’s Program to Assist Weapons Scientists
in the Russia and Other Countries needs to be Reassessed. GAO-08-189, December 2007.
DOE reports that the IPP program engaged 13,000 scientists, engineers, and
technicians between FY1994 and FY2002, with 6,700 of them working on projects
in 2002. At the end of 2002, IPP had 176 projects ongoing at 56 institutes in Russia,
with 64 of these projects at facilities in the closed nuclear cities. IPP also had 14
projects at six institutes in Kazakhstan, and 13 projects at nine institutes in Ukraine.
It has also been reported that 13 projects have become commercial ventures, and that
the program has created 850 high tech jobs in Russia. Furthermore, the IPP program
has received around $125 million in private sector matching funds.100
Nuclear Cities Initiative (NCI). In August 1998, Vice President Gore and
then-Prime Minister Carancha signed an agreement establishing the Nuclear Cities
Initiative. This program is designed to bring commercial enterprises to Russia’s
closed nuclear cities, so that Russia can reduce the size of its weapons complex and
so that the scientists and engineers will not be tempted to sell their knowledge to
nations seeking nuclear weapons. The United States and Russia signed an
implementing agreement in September 1998, and the program received its first
funding of $15 million in FY1999. The NCI program received a total of nearly $87
million between FY1999 and FY2003; the Bush Administration has requested and
received an additional $17 million for it within the funding for the Russian Transition
Some Members of Congress and others, including GAO, also raised questions
about the value and effectiveness of the NCI program. In its first budget for FY2002,
the Bush Administration sought to reduce funding from $26 million in FY2001 to
$6.6 million, limiting the program to 3 of Russia’s 10 closed nuclear cities. It also
indicated that it might seek to eliminate the program, merging its functions with the
IAP program. Congress accepted this latter proposal, creating the Russian Transition
Initiative, and it initially accepted the reduction in funding for the program.
However, in the supplemental appropriations bill passed after the September 11
attacks, Congress added $15 million to the NCI program. Nevertheless, with limited
funding and uncertain political support, the NCI program reportedly made limited
progress in addressing the employment problems at Russia’s closed nuclear cities.
Some say that the merger with the IAP will bring stability and progress to the
program’s efforts. In late July 2003, the Bush Administration announced that the
NCI program would cease to operate by the end of 2003. The United States and
Russia were unable to agree on the liability provisions in an implementing agreement
for the program. Ongoing projects continued through the end of 2003, but the
program did not receive new funding or begin new projects.
In its FY2005 budget request, the Administration allocated $41 million to the
Russian Transition Initiative. Some of this funding supported ongoing NCI projects
in Russia’s closed nuclear cities. The Administration requested $37.9 million for its
new Global Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention Program in FY2006. Congress
authorized this amount in the FY2006 Defense Authorization Act and appropriated
around $40 million in the Energy and Water Appropriations Act. Within this budget,
the Administration planned to phase out the last of the NCI programs in Russia’s
100 Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by
Matthew Bunn et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
closed city of Snezhinsk and to reduce its efforts in the closed city of Sarov. It would
then focus funding on helping to redirect engineers and technicians associated with
the shutdown of Russia’s plutonium production reactors in Seversk and
Zheleznogorsk (this program is described below). Hence, the budget reduction, when
combined with the shifting of funds to nations outside the former Soviet Union,
resulted in a contraction of efforts to redirect Russia’s nuclear scientists and to reduce
the size of Russia’s nuclear weapons complex.
In the FY2007 budget request, these two programs moved again, to DOE’s
Nonproliferation and International Security account. The total request for both parts
of the program equaled $28.1 million. DOE reported that the decline was due to
reduced activity at two sites that were a part of NCI and to the deferral of work at two
commercial sites. The House and Senate Armed Services Committees both approved
the authorization request for these programs, but the Appropriations Committees
increased the funding to $39.6 million. The FY2008 budget request sought $20.2
million for these programs. DOE has again indicated that the decline in funding
reflects the termination of the NCI portion of the program. Congress appropriated
$30.1 million. The FY2009 budget request includes $23.8 million for these
Elimination of Weapons-Grade Plutonium Production
In the early 1990s, the United States and Russia both pledged to end the
production of plutonium for nuclear weapons. Russia, however, balked at
suggestions that it shut its three remaining plutonium production reactors because it
used the same reactors to produce light and heat in the cities of Tomsk and
Krasnoyarsk. In an agreement signed in 1994, under the auspices of the high-level
commission chaired by Vice President Gore and Russia’s Prime Minister
Chernomyrdin, the two sides agreed that they would work together to provide
alternative energy sources for these Russian cities. This program began as a part of
the DOD CTR program and moved to DOE in FY2002.
In the original 1994 agreement, Russia stated that it would shut the reactors by
Initially, the two nations planned to replace the reactors with fossil-fueled power
plants, but early studies concluded that the construction of these plants could cost up
to $1 billion. Consequently, the two sides began to explore the possibility of
converting the plutonium production reactors to a type whose spent fuel did not
require reprocessing. These new reactors would no longer produce weapons-grade
plutonium. Each side planned to pay half of the expected $160 million for this
conversion project. However, over the next few years the expected cost of the core
conversion more than doubled. After its financial crisis in 1998, Russia concluded
that it could not pay its half. If the project had continued, the United States might
have had to pay more than $300 million. At the same time, questions about the
reactors’ safety raised the possibility that they might need to be closed shortly after
the core conversion was complete.
In late 1999, Minatom proposed that the two sides again pursue the replacement
of the nuclear reactors with fossil fuel plants. After reducing the estimate for the
necessary size of the plants, it estimated that the new project would cost about the
same as the core conversion project. In late 2000 and early 2001, the two nations
agreed to replace the reactors with fossil fuel plants. However, in FY2000 and
FY2001, Congress prohibited the expenditure of any CTR funds for the construction
of fossil fuel plants. When it completed its review of U.S. nonproliferation and threat
reduction assistance to Russia, the Bush Administration endorsed the reactor shut-
down program and transferred the effort from DOD to DOE.
DOD, DOE, and the State Department have all contributed to this project. The
State Department contributed nearly $4.5 million in FY1995 and FY1999 to
feasibility studies. DOD’s budget included $10 million in FY1995 and $16 million
in FY1996. It also included $32 million in FY2000, but these funds were rescinded
after Congress prohibited their expenditure on fossil fuel plants. Congress
transferred $32 million in FY2001 funds and $56 million in FY2002 funds from
DOD to DOE, and appropriated $49 million in the DOE budget for FY2003. The
Bush Administration requested and received $50 million for this effort in FY2004.101
It requested a similar amount, $50.1 million, to continue this project in FY2005.
The United States and Russia concluded a new agreement to implement the
reactor shutdown program in early 2003. According to NNSA, the new fossil fuel
plants will be completed, and the old nuclear reactors shut down, in 2008 and 2011,
assuming there are no further delays in the implementation of the agreement. The
United States and Russia are also implementing efforts to improve safety at the
reactors in the interim.102 At the Seversk site, the program is shutting down two
nuclear reactors and refurbishing an old fossil fuel plant from the 1950s. This project
is slated to be completed by the end of December 2008. At Zheleznogorsk, the
United States is not only helping Russia shut down the nuclear plant, but also helping
it construct a new fossil fuel plant. According to DOE, this project is more than one-
third complete, and should be done by 2011.
DOE requested $132 million for this program area in FY2006; this was a
substantial increase over the $44 million appropriated in FY2005. DOE indicated
that this request reflected its plans to expand significantly the construction activities
associated with the fossil fuel plants at the Seversk site. In the FY2006 Defense
Authorization Act (P.L. 109-163), Congress increased the funding for this project to
over $200 million. Both the House and the Senate noted that they wanted to ensure
that the shutdown of the Zheleznogorsk reactor remained on schedule. The Energy
and Water Appropriations Act also increased funding for this program, but to only
$176.2 million. The FY2007 budget requested $206.6 million for this program. The
increase in funding is again directed at the Zheleznogorsk reactor, with the intent to
complete the shutdown by 2010 instead of 2011. Congress appropriated $174.4
million. The FY2008 budget request sought $181.6 million for this project area.
Within this request, funding for the Seversk site declined sharply, from $84.7 million
to $19.4 million, as the project nears completion, and funding for the Zheleznogorsk
101 Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by
Matthew Bunn et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
102 For details on components of the reactor shut-down program, see U.S. Department of
Energy. FY2004 Congressional Budget Request. Detailed Budget Justifications. February
site continues to rise, from $119.9 million to $160.8 million. The House Energy and
Water Development Appropriations Committee added $10 million to this request to
further accelerate work Zheleznogorsk. The Senate Appropriators, on the other hand,
reduced the request, providing only $152.6 million. In the final budget,
Zheleznogorsk received $159.1 million, and the total project area $179.9 million.
DOE has requested $141.3 million for FY2009. There is no funding for Seversk, and
Zheleznogorsk would receive $139.3 million. The remaining $2 million is allocated
to crosscutting and technical support activities.
Fissile Materials Disposition
In September 1998, the United States and Russia agreed to convert surplus
weapons-grade plutonium to a form that could not be returned to nuclear weapons.
In the Plutonium Management and Disposition Agreement, signed in September
2000, each side agreed to dispose of 34 metric tons of weapons-grade plutonium, and
to do so at roughly the same time. This agreement was designed to ease concerns
about the possible theft or diversion of weapons-grade plutonium by nations or others
seeking to develop their own nuclear weapons.
According to the agreement, the parties could use two methods for disposing of
the plutonium — they could either convert it to mixed oxide fuel (MOX) for nuclear
power reactors or immobilize it and dispose of it in a way that would preclude its use
in nuclear weapons. Some analysts have criticized the MOX option on the principle
of opposing any use of plutonium in power generation. From this point of view,
nations that do not possess nuclear weapons could use a plutonium-base power fuel
cycle as a cover for developing nuclear weapons. If weapons states such as Russia
and the United States used plutonium for power generation, according to this
argument, it would be more difficult to persuade non-weapons states not to do so.
However, Russia has expressed little interest in the permanent disposal of plutonium,
noting that the material could have great value for its civilian power program. The
United States initially intended to pursue both options. However, after reviewing
U.S. nonproliferation policies in 2001, the Bush Administration concluded that this
approach would be too costly. Instead, it outlined a plan for the United States to
convert almost all its surplus plutonium to MOX fuel. Congress appropriated $152
million for FY2003 to begin construction of three facilities in Savannah River, SC,
to pursue the MOX option, and the FY2004 request included $416 million for
construction and $194 million for operation and maintenance for the U.S. surplus
plutonium disposal program. The FY2005 budget request reduced funding for the
U.S. program by about $50 million.
The United States and international community agreed to pay a large portion of
the cost for Russia’s plutonium disposition program. According to the State
Department, U.S. allies, including Great Britain, France, and Japan, pledged to
provide $700 million.103 Congress appropriated $200 million for this program for
FY1999, but most of these funds have not been spent. The Bush Administration’s
FY2004 budget justification requested $47 million for Russian Fissile Materials
103 U.S. Department of State. Fiscal Year 2002 Performance and Accountability Report. p.
Disposition “Operations and Maintenance,” and prior balances totaling $151 million
will be spent in the Russian Federation “in accordance with a new detailed program
execution plan to be provided to Congress.”104
However, in late July 2003, the Bush Administration announced that the
plutonium disposition program would not pursue additional contracts in 2004
because the United States and Russia were unable to agree on the liability provisions
for a new implementing agreement for the program. The two nations reportedly
reached a liability agreement in 2005, although it has not yet been signed by Russia’s
President Putin. The FY2005 budget included $64 million for U.S. assistance to
Russia on plutonium disposition, under the assumption that the nations would resolve
their differences and the program would resume. Congress authorized and
appropriated the requested amount for FY2005 but questioned the Administration’s
ability to begin construction in May 2005, an event which eventually did not occur.
The Administration requested an additional $64 million for this program in FY2006,
but Congress appropriated only $34 million, again questioning the timing for the start
of the project.
The Administration requested $34.7 million for FY2007 for this project. Both
the House and the Senate Armed Services Committees have expressed wide-ranging
and deep concerns about this program. In particular, Russia has indicated that it may
not pursue the MOX program to eliminate its plutonium, opting instead for the
construction of fast breeder reactors that could burn plutonium directly for energy
production. The United States might not fund this effort, as many in the United
States argue that breeder reactors, which produce more plutonium than they consume,
would undermine nonproliferation objectives. As a result of these concerns, the
House Armed Services Committee deleted all funding for this program in Russia in
the FY2007 Defense Authorization Bill. The Senate Armed Services provided the
funding, but fenced it pending a report from the Secretary of Energy; the Conference
Committee adopted this approach. Congress has also questioned the value of
continuing with the U.S. MOX program and has reduced funding for this effort as
The Bush Administration did not request any additional funding for this
program area in FY2008. In late November 2007, the United States and Russia
announced that they had reached agreement of how they would proceed with this
program.105 Generally, the United States has agreed that Russia can burn some of the
plutonium in breeder reactors but that the reactors will be modified so that they will
not produce more plutonium than they burn. At the same time, the United States will
continue to fund construction of the MOX fuel plant, and Russia will convert some
of its plutonium into this fuel. The Bush Administration has hailed this agreement
as providing a way forward to dispose of plutonium; critics have complained that the
agreement will sharply slow the process of eliminating Russia’s weapons-grade
plutonium. This agreement came too late, however, to change the funding profile for
104 U.S. Department of Energy. FY2004 Congressional Budget Request. Detailed Budget
Justifications. DOE/ME-0016. February 2003. Vol. 1, p. 548.
105 Springer, Sebastian. U.S., Russia Agree on Way Ahead for Plutonium Disposition.
Inside Defense. Tuesday, November 20, 2007.
FY2008 and the Omnibus Appropriations Bill does not contain any funding for this
program area. The Administration has indicated that funding from prior years
remains available to support this program. It has requested only $1 million for
FY2009 to support technical oversight of the program by the U.S. nuclear weapons
Issues for Congress
Congress has addressed a number of issues during the years since it passed the
Nunn-Lugar amendment and DOD established the Cooperative Threat Reduction
Program. Many of these are discussed in detail in CRS Report 97-1027F, Nunn-
Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Programs: Issues for Congress. Some of these
issues have grown out of concerns with specific projects, as has been the case with
the dispute over the chemical weapons destruction facility at Shchuch’ye. Others
have derived from broader concerns about whether threat reduction assistance to
Russia and the other former Soviet states serves broader U.S. national security goals.
The question of whether U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance
represents “defense by other means” — as former Secretary of Defense William
Perry used to argue — or foreign aid — as some in Congress often assert —
continues to echo in debates about these programs. Some program critics and some
Members of Congress also continue to question whether U.S. assistance allows
Russia to divert its own resources to the development and production of new
weapons that could threaten the United States. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld raised
this question during his nomination hearing in January 2001.
On the other hand, as U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance to
Russia moves through its second decade, many of the issues discussed during the
debates over the programs reflect new concerns raised during assessments of how the
programs performed in their first decade and how they might improve in the second.
Many of these issues also reflect the growing focus of the programs on the potential
link between weapons of mass destruction that might leak out of Russia and terrorist
organizations that might seek these weapons to attack the United States and its allies.
The discussion below reviews many of these issues, describing concerns raised by
those who support and those who criticize the programs. The discussion draws
heavily on the findings and proposals outlined by several recent reports on U.S. threat
reduction and nonproliferation assistance. These provide a more detailed description106
of the status of the programs and proposals for the future.
106 See, for example, Reshaping U.S.-Russian Threat Reduction: New Approaches for the
Second Decade. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and Russian American
Nuclear Security Advisory Council. November 2002. [http://www.carnegieendowment.org/
publications/index.cfm?fa=view&id=1117&prog=zgp&proj=znpp]; U.S. Department of
Energy. The Secretary of Energy Advisory Board. A Report Card on the Department of
Energy’s Nonproliferation Programs With Russia. Howard Baker and Lloyd Cutler. Russia
Task Force. January 10, 2001. [http://www.seab.energy.gov/publications/rusrpt.pdf];
Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card and Action Plan, by Matthew
Bunn et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003,
[http://www.nti.org/e_research/cnwm/cnwm.pdf], and Einhorn, Robert J. and Michelle A.
Organization and Coordination
As was noted above, CTR implementation was slow during the program’s early
years. The need to negotiate umbrella agreements with Russia, and to establish a
“culture of cooperation,” was a key reason for the early delays. But some analysts
also cite the need to coordinate project planning among several U.S government
agencies as a problem. Many analysts contend that coordination problems remain
today, even though each of the three key agencies — DOD, DOE and State — funds
and manages its own projects. These agencies still need to coordinate their efforts
to avoid duplication and, in some cases, to share resources and expertise. In addition,
with the programs spread among three agencies, no one in the U.S. government takes
the lead in setting policies and priorities for U.S. threat reduction and
nonproliferation assistance, or in serving as an advocate for these programs in
interagency debates. Some Members of Congress and analysts outside government
have proposed two specific solutions that they believe will improve implementation
of U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance — the creation of a strategic
plan and the designation of an overall program coordinator.
Strategic Plan. Many analysts, both inside and outside the U.S. government,
believe that U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation programs would benefit from
the development of a government-wide strategic plan. Some officials and analysts
expected the Bush Administration to develop a more comprehensive strategic plan
for these programs during its review of U.S. nonproliferation assistance to Russia in107
2001. That review just identified those programs that would receive greater
resources and expanded mandates. But, according to Senator Pete Domenici, “these
programs frequently are intertwined and interrelated in various complex and difficult
ways.”108 According to one analyst who has participated in both DOD and DOE
programs, the growth in U.S. programs “has been by and large, organic, with each
agency pursuing its own contacts and relationships in recipient countries, assembling
and justifying its own budget, implementing programs based on its own culture and
approaches, and interacting with its own Congressional oversight committees.”109
Flournoy, Protecting Against the Spread of Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Weapons.
An Action Agenda for Global Partnership. CSIS Report. January 2003.
[ ht t p: / / www.sgppr oj ect .or g/ publ i cat i ons/ publ i c at i ons_i ndex.ht ml ] .
107 “I would hope that the real result of the review would lead to a more comprehensive
approach, a more integrated approach, to nonproliferation and threat reduction, so that the
individual program can be seen and measured in light of an overall approach and clear goals,
and so the individual programs can support each other more synergistically.” U.S. House.
Committee on Armed Services. Hearing. Department of Energy Budget Request for
FY2002. p. 9. Statement of Gen. John A. Gordon, Administrator, National Nuclear Security
Administration. June 27, 2001.
108 U.S. Senate. Committee on Governmental Affairs, Subcommittee on International
Security, Proliferation and Federal Services. Hearing. Combating Proliferation of Weapons
of Mass Destruction (WMD) with Non-proliferation Programs: Non-proliferation Assistance
Coordination Act of 2001. November 14, 2001.
109 Ibid. Statement of Laura Holgate, Vice President of the Russian Newly Independent
Most analysts agree that a comprehensive strategic plan would allow for the
development of an overall set of goals for U.S. assistance, better coordination among
programs, a more consistent method to set priorities and measure progress, and a
coordinated way to determine when and how the United States had achieved its goals
and could complete a program.
Program Coordination. Many analysts have also called for the creation of
a high-level program coordinator or a high-level interagency committee chaired by
a representative of the National Security Council. This program coordinator would
set a consistent direction by setting priorities, resolving competing demands for
budgetary resources, eliminating overlap and redundancy, and coordinating
implementation across agencies. This individual would also raise the political profile
of the programs, bringing consistent political leadership that many analysts believe
is lacking. They argue that continued, coordinated success for the programs requires
“active political engagement at the White House, cabinet, and sub-cabinet political
appointee levels in the U.S. government.”110
Neither the Clinton nor the Bush Administrations accepted proposals for a
single, high-level program coordinator, arguing that interagency coordination already
occurs. According to an official from the Bush Administration, “U.S. policy
implementation and oversight of nonproliferation assistance to the states of the
former Soviet Union is coordinated at senior levels by the Proliferation Strategy
Policy Coordinating Committee, or PCC, chaired by a National Security Council
senior director, with assistant secretary-level representatives from State, Defense,111
Energy and other concerned agencies.” Others have argued that a new interagency
committee would complicate the existing interagency coordinating process.112
The possible need for a high-level coordinator, or czar, remains on the
congressional agenda. In late 2006, Representative Ellen Tauscher and Senator
Hillary Rodham Clinton introduced legislation, known as the Nuclear Terrorism
Prevention Act of 2006 (H.R. 6419, S. 4103), that would have created a Senior
Advisor to the President for the prevention of nuclear terrorism. This advisor would
have, among other things, been responsible for “overseeing the development, by the
relevant Federal departments and agencies, of accelerated and strengthened program
implementation strategies and diplomatic strategies ... and overseeing the
development of budget requests for these programs and ensuring that they adequately
States Program, Nuclear Threat Initiative.
110 Options for Increased U.S. Russian Nuclear Nonproliferation Cooperation and Projected
Costs. RANSAC, October 2001.
111 U.S. Senate. Committee on Governmental Affairs, Subcommittee on International
Security, Proliferation and Federal Services. Hearing. Combating Proliferation of Weapons
of Mass Destruction (WMD) with Non-proliferation Programs: Non-proliferation Assistance
Coordination Act of 2001. Statement of Vann Van Diepen, Deputy Assistant Secretary of
State for Nonproliferation. November 29, 2001.
112 Ibid. Statement of Marshall Billingslea, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for
reflect the priority of the problem.” The first piece of legislation introduced in the
110th Congress, the Implementing the 9/11 Commission Recommendations Act of
2007 (H.R. 1, S. 4) took up the same theme. It would establish an Office of the
United States Coordinator for the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction
Proliferation and Terrorism within the Executive Office of the President. This
advisor would, among other things, lead inter-agency coordination of U.S. efforts to
implement its WMD nonproliferation strategy and would oversee “the development
of a comprehensive and coordinated budget for programs and initiatives to prevent
WMD proliferation and terrorism, ensuring that such budget adequately reflects the
priority of the challenges and is effectively executed, and carrying out other
appropriate budgetary authorities.”
Most analysts agree that the budget responsibility addressed in this legislation
would be critical to the success of this new policy position. A White House-based
nonproliferation “czar” may be able to communicate high-level interest and political
commitment to the programs. However, unless this individual could control the
budgets of the programs involved to ensure that funding levels matched stated
priorities, and unless the individual could implement corrective actions to ensure that
programs achieved their objectives, it seems unlikely that he or she would be able to
establish priorities and enforce them across government agencies. A high-level
committee might have greater success creating a consensus about priorities, because
each agency would have a representative at the table. But it might still find it
difficult to match funding levels to these priorities because each agency’s budget
would still reflect the overall priorities and missions of the agency.
Access and Transparency
Many analysts and government officials note that the primary barrier to
successful implementation remains the need to gain access and transparency from
officials in the recipient nations, particularly Russia. As was noted above, Russia
was slow to provide the United States with access to nuclear weapons storage areas,
which delayed the implementation of security improvements at these facilities. It has
not provided complete information about or access to facilities in its biological
weapons complex, and, in spite of more than seven years of negotiations, the United
States and Russia still have not completed a transparency agreement for the facility
in Mayak that will store fissile materials removed from weapons. Furthermore,
Russia has not provided the United States with access to many facilities in Russia’s
nuclear weapons complex, leaving large holes in the U.S. ability to improve security
for the nuclear materials at those facilities.
Although many analysts note that Russia’s interest in protecting secret details
about its nuclear weapons programs is understandable, most also argue that this
secrecy, and the resulting delays in program implementation, serve to undermine
support in the United States for threat reduction and nonproliferation programs.
While most agree that Russia must step forward to solve this problem,113 they also
113 The Baker-Cutler report notes that Russian official point out that “transparency and
access matters are far from routine in Russian bureaucracy.” Russia does not have
note that the United States does not have a “systematic approach to identifying and
addressing these problems.”114 Each agency has developed its own solutions. For
example, in some cases, DOE has used photographs and diagrams, instead of on-site
visits, to identify security weaknesses and design security improvements at nuclear
complex sites. Analysts have identified this “ad hoc” process as one further incentive
for better coordination among threat reduction programs; a single program
coordinator could help agencies identify problems and share solutions.
In the FY2006 Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 109-163), Congress called on
the Administration to submit a report on the impediments to successful
implementation of these programs. The report is to both identify these impediments
and outline U.S. plans to overcome them. Problems with access to Russian facilities
is one of the impediments cited in the reporting requirement.
Liability Protections and the Umbrella Agreement
In 1992, the United States and Russia signed an umbrella agreement that
outlined the rights and responsibilities assumed by each of the parties when
implementing programs funded by U.S. threat reduction assistance. This agreement
provides the legal framework that allows for program implementation; if it were to
lapse, the United States could not award any new contracts for projects funded by
U.S. assistance. The original agreement was set to last for seven years; the two
parties agreed to extend it for another seven years in 1999. It was again set to expire
in June 2006. At the time it was signed, this agreement applied only to those
programs funded by the Department of Defense, but the Department of Energy has
adopted a similar agreements to cover many of its programs in the former Soviet
The most contentious elements of the umbrella agreement are the provisions that
cover liability for accidents or incidents that might occur during project
implementation. In the original agreement, Russia assumed all liability, freeing U.S.
contractors from the threat of legal action or the possible need to pay fines and
penalties if accidents were to occur. However, in recent years, Russia has objected
to these blanket liability provisions, arguing, at a minimum, that U.S. contractors
should be held liable for accidents resulting from sabotage. As was noted above, this
disagreement impeded the conclusion of a new implementation agreement for DOE’s
Plutonium Disposition Program. When resolving this dispute, the United States was
reluctant to ease its stand that U.S. contractors receive blanket liability protection, in
procedures for foreigners to have routine access to facilities in the nuclear weapons
complex, so requests are treated on a case-by-case basis. They need a high-level
government decision to lead to routine access, rather than having it treated on a case-by-case
basis. U.S. Department of Energy. The Secretary of Energy Advisory Board. A Report Card
on the Department of Energy’s Nonproliferation Programs With Russia. Howard Baker and
Lloyd Cutler. Russia Task Force. January 10, 2001. p. 22.
114 Reshaping U.S.-Russian Threat Reduction: New Approaches for the Second Decade.
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and Russian American Nuclear Security
Advisory Council. November 2002. p. 4.
part, because it was afraid that this would set an unacceptable precedent during
negotiations on the broader umbrella agreement.
However, by the middle of 2005, the United States and Russia both recognized
that a failure to resolve the liability debate stalling the Plutonium Disposition
Program could, eventually, lead to a failure to resolve the dispute in negotiations over
the umbrella agreement. This, in turn, could stall or stop a nonproliferation program
that most experts agreed had made great strides to secure weapons and materials in
Russia. Conversely, if the two states could find an acceptable solution for the DOE
program’s agreement, it might ease efforts to conclude a new umbrella agreement.
During this process, contractors participating in the DOE program reportedly noted
that they would not object to a provision that placed liability for accidents resulting
from sabotage onto the U.S. companies; they noted that this could expose them to
Russia’s legal system, but they also noted that the United States might address this
through a separate international treaty or by focusing on Russian liability law, rather
than by pressing for blanket liability protection.115
The two sides reached agreement on the liability provisions for the DOE
programs during the G-8 summit at Gleneagles, Scotland, in July 2005. Reports
indicate that, in exchange for the U.S. giving up its insistence on blanket liability
protection in future contracts, the two countries would set up a separate process for
addressing any situations that might arise as a result of sabotage.116
In mid-June 2006, the United States and Russia reached agreement on liability
protections and extended the umbrella agreement for another seven years.117 This
concluded the agreement just days before the existing agreement was due to expire.
Reports indicate that the new agreement retains the original agreement’s blanket
liability protections for existing projects but will address Russia’s concerns when
implementing future projects. Hence, U.S. contractors could be liable for damages
caused by sabotage or other accidents, in some circumstances.
Certifications and Waivers
The Nunn-Lugar amendment contained six “exclusions” that set out conditions
the recipients had to meet before receiving U.S. threat reduction assistance. The
United States could not provide assistance until the President certified to Congress
that each recipient nation was “committed to:”
(1) making a substantial investment of its resources for dismantling or destroying
115 Fiorill, Joe. Hopes, Pressure Rise for End to U.S.-Russian Stalemate on Liability in
Nuclear Security Projects. Global Security Newswire. July 1, 2005.
116 Liabilities Deal Rests With Russian Prime Minister for Final Approval. Inside the
Pentagon. December 22, 2005.
117 The White House. Office of the Press Secretary. Cooperative Threat Reduction
Agreement with Russia Extended. June 19, 2006.
(2) forgoing any military modernization program that exceeds legitimate defense
requirements and forgoing the replacement of destroyed weapons of mass
(3) forgoing any use of fissionable and other components of destroyed nuclear
weapons in new nuclear weapons;
(4) facilitating United States verification of weapons destruction carried out
under section 212;
(5) complying with all relevant arms control agreements; and
(6) observing internationally recognized human rights, including the protection118
Congress expected the President to exercise his judgement when deciding
whether to issue the certifications. For example, the legislation states that the
recipient nations must be “committed to” the policies listed in the six exclusions, a
standard which can be less demanding than one that requires precise behavior. The
Clinton Administration certified Russia for several years, even though the United
States had questions about Russia’s compliance with chemical and biological
weapons agreements, because Russia’s President Yeltsin had offered verbal
assurances of his commitment to resolve the outstanding questions. Using the same
information, the Bush Administration withheld Russia’s certification. In addition,
the exclusions do not define many of their terms. For example, they state that a
recipient must make “a substantial investment” of its own resources, but it does not
define a level of investment that would be necessary. They also state that the
recipients must forgo military modernization programs that exceed legitimate defense
requirements, but it does not ban all military modernization or indicate how much
would be too much.
Congress has debated adding new or modified exclusions to the CTR legislation
several times over the life of the CTR program. In some years, some Members have
sought to provide more precise standards of behavior for the recipient nations; in
others, they have sought to add new requirements linking receipt of assistance to a
greater number of policy areas. Congress has rejected many of these efforts,
particularly if they appeared certain to cut off U.S. threat reduction assistance to
Russia. Instead, it has usually crafted requirements with language that provides the
President with the flexibility to balance U.S. concerns about the recipients’ policies
against the U.S. interest in continuing efforts to contain and eliminate weapons of
Congress did add new certification requirements related to the construction of
the chemical weapons destruction facility at Shchuch’ye in FY1998 and FY1999.
These stated that “no funds authorized to be appropriated under this or any other Act
118 PL 102-228, Sec 211, paragraph (b).
119 For a detailed review of the history of the CTR certification requirements, see CRS
Memorandum for Congress. Certification Requirements Affecting the Nunn-Lugar
Cooperative Threat Reduction Program. By Amy F. Woolf. December 23, 2002.
for FY1998 for Cooperative Threat Reduction programs may be obligated or
expended for chemical weapons destruction activities ... until the President submits
to Congress a written certification” that:
(A) Russia is making reasonable progress toward the implementation of the
Bilateral Destruction Agreement;
(B) the United States and Russia have made substantial progress toward the
resolution, to the satisfaction of the United States, of outstanding compliance
issues under the Wyoming Memorandum of Understanding and the Bilateral
Destruction Agreement; and
(C) Russia has fully and accurately declared all information regarding its unitary
and binary chemical weapons, chemical weapons facilities, and other facilities
associated with chemical weapons.
However, Congress permitted the President to submit an alternative
certification, which stated that “the national security interests of the United States
could be undermined by a United States policy not to carry out chemical weapons
destruction activities under the Cooperative Threat Reduction programs.” But when
Congress resumed funding for Shchuch’ye in FY2002, after a two year prohibition,
it restored the certification requirements without the alternative provision. The
United States could not provide funding for chemical weapons destruction activities
in Russia until the Secretary of Defense certified that there has been:
(1) information provided by Russia, that the United States assesses to be full and
accurate, regarding the size of the chemical weapons stockpile of Russia;
(2) a demonstrated annual commitment by Russia to allocate at least $25,000,000
to chemical weapons elimination;
(3) development by Russia of a practical plan for destroying its stockpile of nerve
(4) enactment of a law by Russia that provides for the elimination of all nerve
agents at a single site;
(5) an agreement by Russia to destroy or convert its chemical weapons
production facilities at Volgograd and Novocheboksark; and
(6) a demonstrated commitment from the international community to fund and
build infrastructure needed to support and operate the facility.
The Bush Administration announced, in April 2002, that it could not certify that
Russia was committed to its arms control obligations under the Chemical Weapons
and Biological Weapons Conventions. This decision stalled many ongoing CTR
projects by precluding the signing and implementation of new contracts.
Furthermore, in an effort to balance its stated support for CTR with this decision, the
Administration asked Congress to provide it with the authority to waive the
certification requirements so that it could continue to fund CTR programs in Russia.
Most Members of Congress agreed with the Administration’s view that the CTR
programs continued to serve U.S. national security interests, and the House and
Senate each included a waiver authority in its version of the Defense Authorization
Bill. The Senate provided the President with permanent waiver authority; once
passed, the authority would remain available to the President in all future fiscal years.
The House sought a less generous provision, providing the President with the
authority to waive the certification requirements only in FY2003. The Conference
Committee, in Section 1306 (H.Rept. 107-436), provided the President with the
authority to waive the certification requirements for three years. But this waiver only
applied to the original six exclusions, not the separate certification for Shchuch’ye.
Congress included one year of waiver authority for that project in the FY2003
Defense Appropriations Bill (P.L.107-248), the FY2004 Defense Authorization Bill
(P.L 108-136), and the FY2005 Defense Authorization Bill (P.L. 108-375).
The three years of waiver authority in the FY2003 Defense Authorization Act
expired at the end of FY2005. The House, in its version of the FY2006 Defense
Authorization Bill provided the President with another three years of waiver
authority. The Senate, in contrast, provided the President with unlimited waiver
authority. The Conference Committee adopted the Senate position. The President
must still present a waiver each year, if he cannot certify Russia’s compliance with
the requirements, but this authority is available to him every year. In its version of
the FY2007 Defense Authorization Bill, the Senate approved language that would
have eliminated the certification requirements from the CTR legislation. The House
rejected this approach, although the final version of the Bill continues to provide the
President with unlimited waver authority.
The Bush Administration has indicated that it believes that the combination of
certification requirements and Presidential waivers is an essential part of its effort to
use the CTR program to encourage greater openness in Russia and to transform
Russian behavior. They allow the United States to signal to Russia that it will hold
it to a high standard, and, although the President can waive the certifications, he does
not have to if Russian behavior does not meet U.S. standards. Some in Congress
support this approach. They agree that the CTR program should be afforded a high
priority, but they note that it cannot proceed in a vacuum, without consideration for
Russian behavior in other policy areas.
Some, however, disagree with this approach. They believe that U.S. threat
reduction assistance to Russia should be of the highest priority, and although Russian
policies in other areas are important, they should not interfere with the elimination
and containment of weapons of mass destruction. Some of these Members have
proposed that Congress amend the CTR legislation to remove the certification
requirements altogether. Others believe that Congress should provide the President
with permanent waiver authority so that this debate does not stop the program, as it
did in 2002, again in the future.
Some in Congress, however, believe that Russian policies in other areas — such
as Russian nuclear cooperation with Iran, Russian military modernization, and the
lack of Russian compliance with arms control — can create new threats to U.S.
security and, therefore, are of higher priority than threat reduction assistance. They
argue that the President should have only a limited ability to waive the certification
The 110th Congress has addressed this issue again; both the House and Senate
versions of the Defense Authorization Bill would eliminate the certification
requirements from the CTR program. The Conference Report accepted this
provision, and, as a result, U.S. assistance under the CTR program will no longer be
subject to the certification requirements that have been the cause of so much debate.
Funding and Focus of the Programs
Funding. The Bush Administration has indicated, through the U.S.
commitment to the G-8 Global Partnership (described below), that it plans to request
around $1 billion per year for U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation programs
in Russia and the other former Soviet states. These programs expanded sharply in
the latter half of the 1990s, when the CTR program receiving a little less than half of
the total appropriation, and the DOE programs growing to consume a majority of the
funding. Yet many analysts argue that the United States should commit a far greater
sum to these efforts. The Baker-Cutler report, for example, released in January 2001,
argued that the United States should spend up to $30 billion over the next 10 years120
on DOE’s programs to secure nuclear materials. This amount did not include
funding for DOD or State Department programs, which could total another $5 billion
over the next 10 years if spending continues at the current level.
Most analysts agree that added funding will not necessarily accelerate all U.S.
programs. They acknowledge that implementation problems, such as the absence of
access to many facilities and the U.S. failure to certify Russia for receipt of CTR
assistance for most of 2002, slowed progress and left significant amounts of money
unspent. On the other hand, they have identified numerous programs that might
achieve greater results with increased funding. These include the science centers in
Moscow and Kiev, where the United States and its partners have had to limit the
number of scientists who receive research grants because of limits on the available
funds. This list at one time also included the program to dispose of plutonium in
Russia, where added funding might have sped construction of the MOX facility and
hasten the elimination of weapons grade plutonium, and the program to eliminate
Russia’s plutonium producing reactors, where greater funding is now leading to the
completion of replacement energy plants. Export and border control programs might
also accelerate their progress with added funding, leading to the installation of
improved equipment and procedures at a greater number of border crossing points.
The Bush Administration generally agrees with the need to add funding to some
programs to accelerate their progress, and it took this route with several programs,
such as the science centers and export and border control programs, during its first
term. It has also called for added international funding to help accelerate the
shutdown of Russia’s plutonium-producing reactors and to speed security
improvements at storage sites for Russian nuclear warheads. However, analysts note
that, with a fixed budget of around $1 billion per year, the United States will be able
to expand these programs and introduce new programs only if it reduces funding for
120 U.S. Department of Energy. The Secretary of Energy Advisory Board. A Report Card
on the Department of Energy’s Nonproliferation Programs With Russia. Howard Baker and
Lloyd Cutler. Russia Task Force. January 10, 2001. p. 20.
other programs. But other programs, such as the effort to help Russia dispose of its
weapons-grade plutonium, could consume rapidly increasing sums in the future.
Consequently, the Administration’s plans for a fixed budget could force trade-offs
between projects. For example, in its budget request for FY2004, DOE sought to add
funding to accelerate the blend-down of highly enriched uranium and to fund the new
program to identify and secure radiological sources. At the same time, it has reduced
funding for MPC&A projects in Russia’s nuclear weapons complex.
On the other hand, some current programs may finish their missions in the
coming years, allowing increased funding for other programs. Many of the capital-
intensive construction projects funded during the 1990s fall into this category, as is
evidenced by the reduced budgets for strategic offensive arms elimination and the
construction of the chemical weapons destruction facility. Some have even noted
that, as these large projects conclude, the United States might find it difficult to fulfill
its commitment to spend $1 billion each year. DOD’s CTR budget is already
declining, and DOE has noted that its funding for programs in Russia is likely to
decline in the next few years as it completes many of the security upgrades at nuclear
weapons storage facilities. These changes could pave the way for added funding for
new projects in the former Soviet Union, or they could release funds for use on other
projects with an anti-terrorism focus, possibly outside the former Soviet Union. If
recent trends continue, however, it seems quite likely that, while the U.S. budget for
nonproliferation and threat reduction assistance may hold steady, or even increase a
little, funding for programs in the former Soviet Union could decline in the near
Focus. U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation programs have pursued a
number of different types of projects, trying different solutions to different problems.
However, most have followed one theme — these projects have sought to
consolidate, contain, and destroy weapons and materials, and to consolidate and
contain weapons knowledge, so that they would not leak out of the former Soviet
Union. In essence, the United States has sought to identify materials and knowledge
that might leak out of Russia and to contain them at their source. Several of the new
projects identified by the Bush Administration, such as the WMD Proliferation
Prevention Project at DOD and DOE Second Line of Defense, take a different
approach. Instead of improving security at the source, they seek set up barriers
outside the nuclear weapons complex to prevent these resources from leaving the
territory of the former Soviet Union.
These two approaches can be complementary and provide a “layered defense”
against the leakage of weapons, materials, and knowhow. However, in an era of
constrained budgets, they might also compete for funding and political support.
Furthermore, many analysts believe that the most effective approach to keeping
nuclear materials away from terrorists is to protect them at their source, at facilities
in Russia’s nuclear complex.121 The Bush Administration’s budget request reduces
121 “The most effective approach to reducing the risk is a multi-layered defense designed to
block each step on the terrorist pathway to the a bomb. But securing nuclear weapons and
materials at their source is the single most critical layer of this defense, where actions that
or holds steady funding for MPC&A programs, while increasing funding for other
types of projects. Consequently, Congress may address the issue of focus and
priorities in its debate over U.S. threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance.
Globalization and International Cooperation
There is near-universal agreement, both within the Bush Administration and
among analysts outside the U.S. government, that the potential proliferation of
weapons of mass destruction to rogue nations or terrorist groups presents a global
problem that requires an international response. While the legacy of the Soviet
Union’s weapons programs may create the most immediate and largest threat, other
nations also possess materials, weapons, or knowledge that could leak out beyond
their borders to those seeking their own nuclear, chemical or biological weapons.122
In addition, although the United States has spent more than a decade trying to help
Russia and the other former Soviet states secure their weapons, materials, and
knowledge, other nations can contribute to this effort with funding and cooperative
programs. The following section addresses three characteristics of the proposals for
the “globalization” of threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance. The first, the
G-8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass
Destruction, is an initiative to expand the list of countries contributing to threat
reduction and nonproliferation programs in Russia. The second is an initiative to
extend U.S. threat reduction assistance to nations outside the former Soviet Union.
The third is a more general approach to encourage all nations to better account for
and secure their weapons of mass destruction and materials that might become
attractive targets for terrorists seeking their own weapons of mass destruction.
The G-8 Global Partnership. During the G-8 summit in Kananaskis,
Canada, in July 2002, the United States, Russia, and other G-8 leaders agreed to
establish a long-term program — the G-8 Global Partnership Against Weapons of
Mass Destruction — to stop the spread of weapons of mass destruction and related
materials and technology. Under this program, known as 10+10 over 10, the United
States has pledged to provide $10 billion over 10 years to sustain ongoing threat
reduction programs in Russia; this amount of $1 billion per year is equal to current
U.S. spending on threat reduction and nonproliferation programs in Russia, so the
U.S. commitment would not necessarily signal an increase in the U.S. commitment.
The other G-7 nations have also agreed that they will provide, together, up to $10
billion over 10 years. Russia has agreed to contribute $2 billion of its own money.
It has also agreed to adopt a set of guidelines that will allow it to receive assistance.
can be taken now will do the most to reduce the risk of terrorist acquiring nuclear weapons
and materials, at least cost.” Controlling Nuclear Warheads and Materials: A Report Card
and Action Plan, by Matthew Bunn et al. Project on Managing the Atom. March 2003.
122 According to former Senator Sam Nunn, “some 20 tons of civilian HEU (highly enriched
uranium) exists at 345 civilian research facilities in 58 countries, yet there are no
international standards for securing these nuclear materials within a country.” Sam Nunn,
Co-Chairman of the Nuclear Threat Initiative. Reducing the Threats from Weapons of Mass
Destruction and Building a Global Coalition Against Catastrophic Terrorism. Moscow,
Russia. May 27, 2002.
Specifically it has agreed that it will provide for “effective monitoring, auditing, and
transparency measures” and that it will “provide for adequate access for donor
representatives at work sites.” It has also agreed that the assistance will be free from
taxes and other charges and that it will ensure adequate liability protections for donor
countries and their personnel.123 Each of these issues continue to hinder
nonproliferation assistance to Russia, and all potential donors have emphasized the
need for their resolution before they provide additional assistance.
The G-8 leaders agreed that this new program would initially focus on threat
reduction and nonproliferation programs in Russia but could eventually extend to
other nations if they adopt the Partnership’s guidelines. The United States considers
its assistance to the other former Soviet states to be a part of its commitment under
the Global Partnership. Ukraine has also expressed an interest in receiving assistance
under this program. The United States would also like the Global Partnership to
contribute to programs designed to redirect scientists in Iraq and Libya. During their
2004 meeting at Sea Island, Georgia, the participants agreed to consider this
The G-8 leaders also invited other nations or organizations, such as the
European Union, to contribute to the program. Norway and others in Europe have
already outlined cooperative programs with Russia. At the G-8 summit in Evian,
France, in 2003, six other nations in Europe (Sweden, Finland, Norway, Poland,
Switzerland, and the Netherlands) joined the partnership. Seven additional nations
(Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, and the Czech
Republic) joined during the 2004 summit in Sea Island, Georgia. President Bush, in
a speech on February 11, specifically emphasized that the G-8 Global Partnership
should expand its list of both donors and recipient nations.124
Some analysts have questioned how successful the Global Partnership will be
in providing significant new funding for threat reduction and nonproliferation
programs. The Partnership had received pledges for more nearly $17 billion
(including the $10 billion from the United States) by May 2004. However, pledges
of support received since Kananaskis may not necessarily extend into sustained
funding over the next 10 years. As Senator Richard Lugar has noted, “many of our
international partners will find it difficult to establish nonproliferation programs
during a period of stagnating domestic economic growth.”125
Some have also questioned how the allies will set priorities and divide up
responsibilities over different types of nonproliferation projects. In the statement
released after the Kananaskis summit, they listed several projects, including the
123 “The G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass
Destruction.” Statement by the Group of Eight Leaders. Kananaskis, Canada. June 27,
124 The White House. “President announces New Measures to Counter the Threat of
WMD.” Fort Lesley J. McNair. February 11, 2004.
125 Senator Richard Lugar has noted that “The G-8 initiative is not assured. “ See Lugar,
Richard G. “The Next Steps in U.S. Nonproliferation Policy.” Arms Control Today.
destruction of chemical weapons, dismantlement of decommissioned nuclear
submarines, disposition of fissile materials, and employment of former weapons
scientists as high-priority projects.126 Most analysts agree that added funding would
help to expand and accelerate each of these project areas. At the same time though,
the Global Partnership will not rely on a single coordinating body to either identify
new projects or set priorities among competing projects. Each nation will allocate
its own funds to those programs that it views as high-priority endeavors. With no
central authority, this process could leave some programs with too little funding and
others with too much funding.
Extending CTR Beyond the Former Soviet Union. In the debate over
the FY2003 Defense Authorization Bill, the Senate approved an amendment,
proposed by Senator Richard Lugar, that would allow DOD to use up to $50 million
in FY2003 CTR funds “outside the states of the former Soviet Union” to resolve
“critical emerging proliferation threats and to take advantage of opportunities to
achieve long-standing United States nonproliferation goals.”127 Senator Lugar argued
that this type of effort could provide assistance to nations “seeking help in securing
or destroying weapons or dangerous materials” and could also “create international
standards of accountability for protecting and handling nuclear material and deadly
pathogens.” This legislation would also allow the United States to “undertake
missions to secure dangerous materials or weapons that were at risk of falling into
the wrong hands.”128
The Senate and the Bush Administration supported Senator Lugar’s proposal.
The House, however, objected to this expansion of CTR, and the language was
removed in conference. The Bush Administration requested a similar authorization
in its Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Bill for FY2003. The Senate again
approved the request and the House again rejected it; it was removed from the final
version of the Bill.
The Bush Administration again requested the authorization to spend up to $50
million in CTR funds outside the former Soviet Union in the FY2004 Defense
Authorization Bill. The Senate again offered its unqualified support for this measure.
The House, in contrast, argued that these types of programs would be better managed
by the State Department than the Defense Department. It authorized the transfer of
up to $78 million in CTR funds to the State Department Nonproliferation and
Disarmament fund for use in threat reduction efforts outside the former Soviet Union.
The Conference Committee, in its report on the FY2004 Defense Authorization Bill
(P.L. 108-136), approved the President’s request and permits the use of up to $50
million in CTR funds outside the former Soviet Union. However, in deference to the
House concerns, the committee language indicates that this funding could be used
only for short-term projects; it also states that the President should determine whether
126 “The G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass
Destruction.” Statement by the Group of Eight Leaders. Kananaskis, Canada. June 27,
127 S. 2026, H.R. 4546, Sec. 1203.
128 Lugar, Richard G. “The Next Steps in U.S. Nonproliferation Policy.” Arms Control
Today. December 2002.
DOD is the agency that is most capable of implementing the planned project. The
conferees stated that they would expect the President to assign the project to the most
appropriate agency. The Bush Administration exercised this authority for the first
time in mid-2004, when it provided assistance to Albania for the elimination of
In its version of the FY2006 Defense Authorization Bill, the Senate sought to
alter the provision, so that the Secretary of Defense, rather than the President, could
approve expenditures outside the former Soviet Union. The Senate argued that this
change would streamline the procedure and make it easier for the United States to
respond to sudden and emerging proliferation problems. The House, however,
objected, and the Conference Committee did not accept the Senate provision.
The 110th Congress addressed this issue again, both expanding the authority to
spend CTR funds outside the former Soviet Union and to streamline the process of
identifying and approving potential projects. As was noted above, Congress added
$10 million to the CTR authorization to fund these programs, Further, it eliminated
the requirement included in the FY2004 Authorization Act (P.L. 108-136) that
limited the program to short-term projects that addressed sudden, emergency
proliferation concerns. Instead, the Conference Report (H.Rept. 110-477, Sec. 1303),
specifies that CTR programs outside the former Soviet Union are defined in a similar
way to those inside the former Soviet Union. They would be programs designed to:
!Facilitate the elimination, and the safe and secure transportation and
storage, of chemical or biological weapons, weapons components,
weapons-related materials, and their delivery vehicles.
!Facilitate safe and secure transportation and storage of nuclear
weapons, weapons components, and their delivery vehicles.
!Prevent the proliferation of nuclear and chemical weapons, weapons
components, and weapons-related military technology and expertise.
!Prevent the proliferation of biological weapons, weapons
components, and weapons-related military technology and expertise,
which may include activities that facilitate detection and reporting
of highly pathogenic diseases or other diseases that are associated
with or that could be utilized as an early warning mechanism for
disease outbreaks that could impact the Armed Forces of the United
States or allies of the United States; and
!Expand military-to-military and defense contacts.
Those who support the expansion of CTR beyond the former Soviet Union
argue that the United States could apply the model of threat reduction assistance that
it has developed during the past 12 years to help other nations secure and eliminate
129 Warrick, Joby. Albania’s Chemical Cache Raises Fears About Others. Washington Post.
January 10, 2005. p. A1.
weapons or materials that might be attractive to terrorists. They point to nations such
as Pakistan, where insecure nuclear materials might be at risk of theft or diversion
by government officials or representatives of terrorist organizations.130 Others,
however, question whether a program like CTR can be applied successfully to
nations outside the former Soviet Union. They note that these nations might not be
willing to allow the United States access to facilities that house nuclear materials or
weapons; that they might prefer to enhance, rather than reduce, the threat posed by
their weapons of mass destruction; and that U.S. assistance in securing weapons
might actually make it easier for the recipient nations to deploy and use the weapons.
Some have also questioned whether the United States can legally provide assistance,
under U.S. and international law, to nations that are not parties to the Nuclear
Global Recognition of National Responsibility. One of the key themes
in recent reviews of the proliferation threat and the potential link to terrorism is the
recognition that nuclear, chemical, and biological materials reside in many nations
around the world. Nations with research facilities for these materials often lack the
basic accounting, security, export, and border control systems that the United States
has spent more than 10 years trying to bring to Russia. Although few of these
materials would be useful to those seeking to build nuclear weapons, they could be
of use to those seeking a radiological dispersal device (dirty bomb) or a chemical or
biological weapon. There is a growing consensus that the international community
and individual nations should take steps to address problems with these materials,
beyond those already in place under the International Atomic Energy Agency.132
The United States would not necessarily need to adopt new programs and
appropriate new funds to address this problem. Some believe, as was noted above,
that efforts to expand CTR programs beyond the former Soviet Union could help
address the problem. But many believe that the IAEA, with the support of the
United States, could take steps in this direction through its existing programs that
help countries secure and account for radiological materials. The Chemical Weapons
Convention also provides a mechanism that might help nations secure and account
for chemical agents and materials. Consequently, at least initially, the effort to
address this global problem could be more diplomatic and political than technical,
with the United States and others using the “bully pulpit” to encourage other nations
130 See, for example, Gottemoeller, Rose and Rebecca Longsworth. Enhancing Nuclear
Security in the Counter-terrorism Struggle: India and Pakistan as a New Region for
Cooperation. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Working Papers. Number 29.
131 See CRS Report RL31589, Nuclear Threat Reduction Measures for India and Pakistan,
by Sharon Squassoni.
132 Senator Sam Nunn, in outlining his proposal for a Global Coalition Against Catastrophic
Terrorism, has stated that “our goal must be to see that all nations come under a system of
international standards and inspection for the protection of dangerous nuclear materials.”
Remarks by Former U.S. Senator Sam Nunn, Chairman, Nuclear Threat Initiative. Carnegie
Endowment for International Peace. International Nonproliferation Conference. November
to recognize the problem and take steps within their own systems to address their
In essence, this new global focus may serve to shape the second decade of U.S.
threat reduction and nonproliferation assistance. During the first decade, the problem
was dominated by concerns over the potential for the loss of control over nuclear
materials and weapons in the former Soviet Union, and the solutions were dominated
by U.S. programs to bring technical assistance to the former Soviet states. In the
second decade, the problem is likely to be dominated by concerns about the potential
acquisition of nuclear, chemical, and biological materials by terrorist organizations.
The solutions may be dominated by a growing sense of global cooperation in
identifying and addressing weaknesses in a greater number of countries. U.S.
funding and technical assistance may still play a dominant role, but other nations may
also step in to offer their experience, expertise, and financial resources.