CTBT Ratification and the Future of Nuclear Non-Proliferation: The 2007 Entry-Into-Force Conference



Date and Time

December 12, 2007 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM


Open to the public.

No RSVP required


Reuben W. Hills Conference Room

FSI Contact

Justin C. Liszanckie

The Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) is a pivotal litmus test to determine a nation's "walking-the-walk dedication" on nonproliferation matters. The September Article XIV conference to obtain Entrance-Into-Force was attended by delegations from Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, China, Russia, and 101 other nations, but not the United States, North Korea, and India (1). The views of key global diplomats on the purpose and direction of the CTBT will be cited, followed by an analysis of funding and regional acceptance.

Official proceedings were adjourned for a two-hour session with three non-diplomats and Ambassador Jaap Ramaker (UN Conference on Disarmament chief CTBT negotiator) (2). The technical presentation on CTBT monitoring progress (2005-6 CISAC study) will be summarized (3). Monitoring has advanced since the 1999 Senate defeat by lowering the monitoring threshold from 1 kt to 0.1 kilotons (1-2 kt in a cavity), and by improvements in regional seismology (results of 2006-DPRK test and other data), correlation-wave seismology, interferometric synthetic aperture radar, cooperative monitoring at test sites without losing secrets, radionuclide monitoring improvement by a factor of 10, and other results. This presentation showed that the CTBT was effectively verifiable, in accordance with the Nitze-Baker definition.

CTBT has not been discharged from the Senate's Executive Calendar, thus the United States cannot legally resume nuclear testing without a Senate vote to discharge it. The NPT regime is in trouble; Article IV will mostly allow sensitive fuel cycle operations. The overlap between NPT and CTBT will be discussed. The statement of concern on CTBT by Senator Kyl (Cong. Record, 10-24-07) will be examined. Lastly, a path to Entrance-Into-Force for the CTBT will be described.

David Hafemeister was a 2005-2006 science fellow at CISAC. He is a professor (emeritus) of physics at California Polytechnic State University. He spent a dozen years in Washington as professional staff member for Senate Committees on Foreign Relations and Governmental Affairs (1990-93 on arms control treaties at the end of the Cold War), science advisor to Senator John Glenn (1975-77), special assistant to Under Secretary of State Benson and Deputy-Under Secretary Nye (1977-78), visiting scientist in the State Department's Office of Nuclear Proliferation Policy (1979), the Office of Strategic Nuclear Policy (1987) and study director at the National Academy of Sciences (2000-02). He also held appointments at Carnegie Mellon, MIT, Stanford, Princeton, and the Lawrence-Berkeley, Argonne and Los Alamos national laboratories. He was chair of the APS Forum on Physics and Society (1985-6) and the APS Panel on Public Affairs (1996-7). He has written or edited ten books and 140 articles and was awarded the APS Szilard award in 1996.

(1) http://www.ctbto.org/reference/article_xiv/2007/article_xiv07_main.htm

(2) http://www.vertic.org/news.asp#ctbtreport

(3) D. Hafemeister, "Progress in CTBT Monitoring Since its 1999 Senate Defeat," Science and Global Security 15(3), 151-183 (2007).