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The nonproliferation treaty and peaceful uses of nuclear explosives

Abstract

In the past, nuclear arms control and peaceful uses of nuclear explosives were seen by many proponents of each as competing - if not opposing - interests. At one extreme, some viewed peaceful uses as an annoying irritant on the way to general and complete disarmament. At the other extreme, some considered arms-control arrangements - particularly those limiting nuclear testing - as bothersome barriers to realizing the full benefits of peaceful nuclear explosions. Most people found themselves somewhere between those extremes. But most also felt a continuing tension between essentially opposing forces. This polarity has been significantly altered by the 1968 Treaty on the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons. It is believed that the future use of nuclear explosives for peaceful purposes will depend in large measure on the international arrangements worked out under the treaty. I also believe that the success of the treaty in checking proliferation of nuclear weapons is contingent, in substantial part, on those peaceful-uses arrangements. In the areas covered by the treaty, therefore, one could view an active development of peaceful uses for nuclear explosives as complementing rather than conflicting with nuclear arms control. The treaty is primarily a security agreement. It is aimed at reducing  More>>
Authors:
Ehrlich, Thomas [1] 
  1. School of Law, Stanford University, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
May 01, 1970
Product Type:
Conference
Report Number:
CONF-700101(vol.1); INIS-XA-N-228
Resource Relation:
Conference: Symposium on engineering with nuclear explosives, Las Vegas, NV (United States), 14-16 Jan 1970; Other Information: PBD: May 1970; Related Information: In: Symposium on engineering with nuclear explosives. Proceedings. Vol. 1, 871 pages.
Subject:
98 NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT, SAFEGUARDS, AND PHYSICAL PROTECTION; ARMS CONTROL; CHINA; FRANCE; IAEA SAFEGUARDS; NON-PROLIFERATION TREATY; NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS; RUSSIAN FEDERATION; UNITED KINGDOM; USA
OSTI ID:
20555818
Research Organizations:
American Nuclear Society, Hinsdale, IL (United States); United States Atomic Energy Commission (United States)
Country of Origin:
IAEA
Language:
English
Other Identifying Numbers:
TRN: XA04N0754010792
Availability:
Available from INIS in electronic form
Submitting Site:
INIS
Size:
page(s) 294-305
Announcement Date:
Feb 20, 2005

Citation Formats

Ehrlich, Thomas. The nonproliferation treaty and peaceful uses of nuclear explosives. IAEA: N. p., 1970. Web.
Ehrlich, Thomas. The nonproliferation treaty and peaceful uses of nuclear explosives. IAEA.
Ehrlich, Thomas. 1970. "The nonproliferation treaty and peaceful uses of nuclear explosives." IAEA.
@misc{etde_20555818,
title = {The nonproliferation treaty and peaceful uses of nuclear explosives}
author = {Ehrlich, Thomas}
abstractNote = {In the past, nuclear arms control and peaceful uses of nuclear explosives were seen by many proponents of each as competing - if not opposing - interests. At one extreme, some viewed peaceful uses as an annoying irritant on the way to general and complete disarmament. At the other extreme, some considered arms-control arrangements - particularly those limiting nuclear testing - as bothersome barriers to realizing the full benefits of peaceful nuclear explosions. Most people found themselves somewhere between those extremes. But most also felt a continuing tension between essentially opposing forces. This polarity has been significantly altered by the 1968 Treaty on the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons. It is believed that the future use of nuclear explosives for peaceful purposes will depend in large measure on the international arrangements worked out under the treaty. I also believe that the success of the treaty in checking proliferation of nuclear weapons is contingent, in substantial part, on those peaceful-uses arrangements. In the areas covered by the treaty, therefore, one could view an active development of peaceful uses for nuclear explosives as complementing rather than conflicting with nuclear arms control. The treaty is primarily a security agreement. It is aimed at reducing the risk of nuclear war by establishing permanency in the current separation of nuclear-weapon and non-nuclear-weapon nations. By its terms, each nuclear-weapon state agrees not to transfer nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices to any recipient, and each non-nuclear-weapon state agrees not to receive such weapons or devices. The non-nuclear- weapon parties are also obligated to negotiate safeguards agreements with the International Atomic Energy Agency covering peaceful-uses activities. And all signatories agree not to transfer fissionable material to those parties unless they are subject to such agreements. These provisions are all part of a scheme to limit the likelihood that the existing nuclear oligopoly will be broken. All impose positive obligations on the non-nuclear-weapon states without corresponding obligations on the nuclear powers. The treaty also includes, however, two important commitments by those powers. First, they are bound under Article VI to 'pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date'. Second, the nuclear-weapon states promise in Article V to ensure that the 'potential benefits of any peaceful applications of nuclear explosions will be made available' to non-nuclear-weapon nations. Among the five nuclear powers, the United States, the Soviet Union, and the United Kingdom have now ratified the treaty. France has declared that it will not sign, but that it welcomes the agreement and will abide by its terms. Communist China has also refused to join, but it has given no indication to date that it will encourage nuclear proliferation. The United States and the Soviet Union were the principal negotiators of the treaty; they were also its prime sponsors. It is by no means certain that the treaty will ever enter into force. That requires the ratification of 17 additional nations. It is more questionable whether the treaty, if it does become operative, will succeed in checking the proliferation of nuclear-weapon states. That requires the adherence of most of the near-nuclear-weapon-or-threshold-nations.}
place = {IAEA}
year = {1970}
month = {May}
}