Senator Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
Table 1: U.S. Government Programs Focusing on Nuclear Non-Proliferation Assistance to the Newly Independent States (NIS)
|Program Name||Year Established||Administering |
|Program Focus||Funding Through Fiscal Year 1998 |
|Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention (IPP)||1994||Department of Energy (DOE)||Stabilize NIS defense institutes and promote long-term employment opportunities for weapons scientists||$114|
|Cooperative Threat Reduction||1992||Department of Defense||Destroy and dismantle NIS weapons of mass destruction and conduct certain demilitarization activities||$1,346a|
|Defense Enterprise Fund||1994||Defense Threat Reduction Agency||Assist defense conversion by financing U.S.-NIS business partnerships||$67|
|Materials Control, Protection and Accounting |
(Lab to Lab)
|1994||DOE||Threat cooperative efforts, bring NIS nuclear materials, protection, control and accounting measures to higher standards||$428|
|International Science and Technology Center (ISTC)||1994||Department of State||Engage NIS weapons scientists in peaceful research to prevent proliferation||$98b|
|Nuclear Cities Initiative||1998||DOE||Assist Russia in reducing the size of its nuclear weapons complex by redirecting the work of nuclear weapons scientists||$0c|
a. Does not include activities such as certain chain-of-custody activities, Arctic Nuclear Waste and funds transferred to other agencies for defense conversion activities, such as IPP and ISTC.
b. Total from all contributors equals $215 million.
c. DOE plans to spend about $600 million on the program over the next 5 years.
Sources: GAO, ACA [Back to text]
GAO Recommendations to the Secretary of Energy
In a February 1999 report to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, the GAO recommended that, in order to improve the Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention program, the Secretary of Energy should:
• Re-examine the role and costs of the national laboratories' with a view toward maximizing the amount of program funds going to the NIS institutes;
• Obtain information on how program funds are being spent by the NIS recipients;
• Seek assurances from the Russian government, either through a government-to-government agreement or through other means, that program funds are exempt from Russian taxes;
• Require that program officials, to the extent possible, obtain accurate data on the number and backgrounds of the scientists participating in program projects, and eliminate funding for institutes that did not formerly work on WMD;
• Clarify program guidance as to whether scientists currently employed in WMD programs are eligible for program funding;
• Require that project reviewers consider all military applications of projects to ensure that useful defense-related information is not unintentionally transferred;
• Strengthen and formalize DOE's process for reviewing proposed chemical and biological projects by (1) providing complete project information to all reviewing U.S. government agencies and organizations, (2) developing criteria to help frame the evaluation process, and (3) providing feedback to all reviewers about the final disposition of the projects;
• Re-evaluate the large number of Thrust 1 projects, particularly those that have been funded for several years, and eliminate those that do not have commercial potential;1
• Develop criteria and time frames for determining when Thrust 1 projects should be terminated if they do not meet the criteria for graduation to the program's next phase;
• Develop a strategic plan for the initiative before large-scale funding begins and include goals, costs, time frames, performance measures and expected outcomes, such as the number of jobs to be created for each city; and
• Not expand the initiative beyond the three nuclear cities until DOE has demonstrated that its efforts are achieving the program's objectives, that is, that jobs are being created in the civilian sector for displaced weapons scientists, engineers and technicians.2
1. IPP Projects are categorized in three phases: Thrust 1, Thrust 2 and Thrust 3. Thrust 1 projects, which are funded by the U.S. government, focus on technology, identification and verification. 2. Concurred, with qualifications.