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NRC Unable to Verify That Nuclear Plants Meet Security Requirements, GAO Say

U.S. congressional auditors said yesterday that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is unable to verify that all U.S. nuclear power plants are taking the required safeguards needed to protect against possible terrorist attacks (see GSN, Aug. 6).

During a hearing held by a House Government Reform subcommittee, officials from the Government Accountability Office described the NRC’s oversight of plant security as a “paper review” that was inadequate in ensuring that industry security plans met increased requirements established after the Sept. 11 attacks. In addition, security exercises to evaluate plant guard forces are not expected to be completed at all U.S. nuclear plants until late 2007, GAO officials said.

NRC officials, however, criticized the GAO’s findings, saying that inspections hours at plants have increased and that physical reviews have been conducted on 80 percent of the security items plant operators must address.

“We are there where the rubber meets the road when it comes to inspections,” commission Executive Director for Operations Luis Reyes said (H. Josef Hebert, Associated Press/Philadelphia Inquirer, Sept. 15).

NTI Analysis

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    March 19, 2014

    In a new Project Syndicate op-ed, NTI President Joan Rohlfing calls for leaders at the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit to establish a global nuclear security system.

  • Future of Global Nuclear Security Policy Summit

    March 14, 2014

    A full transcript of an event previewing the March 2014 Nuclear Security Summit. Co-hosted by National Journal and NTI, featuree a keynote by Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall of the White House National Security Council and a panel discussion with NTI Co-Chairman Sam Nunn; Norway's Ambassador to the United States, Kåre R. Aas; the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Renée Jones-Bos; Congressman Jeff Fortenberry; former Congresswoman Jane Harman; and Harvard's Will Tobey and Matt Bunn.

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United States

This article provides an overview of the United States’ historical and current policies relating to nuclear, chemical, biological and missile proliferation.

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