WASHINGTON  This week, the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (DOE/NNSA) and the U.K. Department of Energy and Climate Change concluded a workshop at Wilton Park, United Kingdom, on the growing challenge of securing the global maritime supply chain.  In total, 55 participants from 15 countries and 9 international organizations participated in the workshop that fulfilled a commitment made by 13 countries at the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit. The workshop focused on actionable recommendations and best practices for deterring, detecting, and responding to trafficking of nuclear and radiological material that could be acquired by terrorists through the maritime shipping system. The recommendations reached will be shared as a deliverable to the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit.

“By engaging the international community to identify best practices, coordinating mechanisms and international standards in the area of radiation detection, we will strengthen radiation detection programs at major shipping ports,” said Eleanor Melamed, Associate Assistant Deputy Administrator for Global Material Security, NNSA.  “These steps will increase global maritime security by building capacity to identify and safely remove detected materials and place them back under regulatory control.

The Nuclear Smuggling Detection and Deterrence (NSDD) Program, within the NNSA’s Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation, supports this strategy by working with international partners to build their capacity to detect, interdict and investigate the illicit trafficking of nuclear and radiological materials.  NSDD accomplishes this mission by providing partners with the expertise and tools needed to detect and respond to trafficking events. 

As of the end of FY15, NSDD has deployed radiation detection equipment at more than 140 seaports worldwide, including at over forty large container seaports.  NSDD is a critical component of the Global Nuclear Detection Architecture, which is a framework for detecting (through technical and non-technical means), analyzing and reporting on nuclear and other radioactive materials that are out of regulatory control.

For more information on the Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation (DNN), Office of Global Material Security (GMS), and Office of Nuclear Smuggling Detection and Deterrence (NSDD), visit the links below:

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Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science. NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, and effectiveness of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear explosive testing; works to reduce the global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad. Visit www.nnsa.energy.gov for more information.