NNSA recently launched a new web platform to help the 48 participating governments of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) work together to contribute to the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons.
The NSG is a group of nuclear supplier countries, which seeks to ensure the peaceful uses of nuclear technology through the implementation of the NSG Guidelines. NSG participating governments commit to uphold its guidelines and exchange information, including on developments of nuclear proliferation concern.
The NSG Guidelines contain conditions of supply that participating governments apply to nuclear and nuclear-related exports for peaceful purposes. The Guidelines help ensure that such transfers will not be diverted to unsafeguarded nuclear fuel cycle or nuclear explosive activities, while not unjustly hindering legitimate trade and cooperation. The NSG Guidelines consist of two parts:
- The Part 1 Guidelines apply to the export of items that are especially designed or prepared for nuclear use, such as nuclear power plants, enriched uranium, and equipment that fabricates nuclear fuel.
- The Part 2 Guidelines apply to the export of items that might be used in the nuclear realm but have other uses, too. Examples include radiation-hardened cameras, lasers, and high explosives.
As an NSG participating government, the United States is responsible for maintaining the Group’s secure intranet and document repository, which is known as the NSG Information Sharing System (NISS). In October, NNSA released a modernized version of NISS, led by NNSA’s Office of Nonproliferation and Arms control (NPAC) and developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, for use by the delegations to the NSG.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever for the NSG’s participating governments to have access to electronic channels of communication that are easy to use and secure,” said Dr. Brent Park, NNSA Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation. “The new NISS system will help the Group advance its critical nonproliferation work during this challenging time.”
In addition to developing and maintaining NISS, NPAC serves on the U.S. delegation to the NSG, providing key technical expertise to ensure the Group’s controls keep pace with technological, industry, and proliferation developments. This work is an important part of NNSA’s broader efforts to prevent the spread of materials, technology, and expertise related to nuclear weapons.