In April 2009 President Obama outlined an ambitious agenda to secure vulnerable nuclear material around the world within four years. In Prague, Obama called the danger of a terrorist acquiring nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction (WMD) "the most immediate and extreme threat to global security." The President’s FY 2012 budget request provides the resources required to implement that agenda. It requests $2.5 billion in FY 2012 and $14.2 billion over the next five years to reduce the global nuclear threat by detecting, securing, safeguarding, disposing and controlling nuclear and radiological material, as well as promoting the responsible application of nuclear technology and science.
The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), through its Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation, works closely with a wide range of international partners, key U.S. federal agencies, the U.S. national laboratories, and the private sector to protect the nation by detecting, securing, safeguarding, controlling, and disposing of dangerous nuclear and radiological material, and related WMD technology and expertise and to monitor compliance with international treaty obligations.
NNSA’s Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation (DNN) Program plays a critical role in the nation’s defense by preventing the spread of nuclear weapons and related materials, technologies and know-how. Leveraging the expertise and detection equipment developed as a result of a 60-year investment in nuclear security, DNN works with international partners and in more than 100 countries to detect and deter smuggling of nuclear material and to stop the illicit transfer of equipment related to weapons of mass destruction; secure vulnerable nuclear weapons and weapons-usable nuclear material; strengthen international nonproliferation efforts; advance technology through research and development; and dispose of surplus weapons-usable nuclear material.
Securing Nuclear and Radiological Material Worldwide
DNN plays a central role in helping the world’s most dangerous materials out of the hands of the world’s most dangerous people by securing nuclear weapons and nuclear and radiological materials at their source, and improving security practices around the world.
Preventing Nuclear Smuggling
DNN works around the world in more than 100 countries to prevent illicit trafficking in nuclear and radiological materials by securing international land borders, seaports and airports; training customs and border officials and other frontline enforcement agencies; and strengthening international export control regimes.
Strengthening International Nonproliferation Efforts
NNSA prevents the proliferation of WMD by strengthening the nonproliferation, nuclear security, and arms control regimes. DNN provides leadership in formulating and implementing governmental nonproliferation strategies and deploying a variety of technically-based national security programs.
Advancing Technology through Research and Development
Research and development of cutting edge technology remains a priority for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation. To be successful in all of its mission areas, DNN needs the best technology available. Nuclear nonproliferation research and development conducts long-term basic and applied research, development, testing, and evaluation of new nuclear nonproliferation, counterproliferation, and counterterrorism technologies.
Disposing of Surplus Fissile Materials
NNSA’s Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation is leading the effort to permanently dispose of surplus fissile material, both HEU and plutonium. Disposing of excess nuclear weapons materials has been a U.S. national security & nonproliferation objective since 1994 and has been endorsed by every President and Congress since that time.