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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Office of Nuclear Energy, Safety and Security (NESS)


This office was formed by merging the NP Nuclear Energy Affairs Office (NP/NE) with the NP Office of the Senior Coordinator for Nuclear Safety (NP/SC). Its role is to take the lead in developing U.S. policy related to peaceful nuclear cooperation policy, nuclear safety, nuclear export controls, and the physical protection of nuclear materials and facilities, in furtherance of U.S. nuclear nonproliferation goals. This office will concentrate on technical aspects of nuclear technology and the dangers of proliferation. In doing so, the office will consult multilaterally and bilaterally with other nations to advance U.S. interests, including within the IAEA, Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), and the Zangger Committee and is the principal Department liaison with the NSG and the Zangger Committee. This office will also advise and coordinate regularly with all relevant ISN offices, including MNSA, WMDT, RA and CPI to advance U.S. counterproliferation and nuclear nonproliferation goals. The office also will work closely with other agencies, including the Departments of Energy, Defense, Commerce, and Homeland Security, to ensure a clear and consistent U.S. policy on nuclear energy, safety, and security issues.

Key missions of the office include:

Nuclear Energy: Officers will have the lead role for analyzing and managing all aspects of peaceful nuclear cooperation. Key functions will include: 1) coordinating and negotiating nuclear cooperation agreements; 2) leading USG efforts in bilateral dialogues involving Joint Standing Committees on Nuclear Cooperation (JSCNC) with other countries; 3) providing technical advice and recommendations on sensitive fuel cycle developments, in particular with regard to U.S. policy at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); 4) advising U.S. delegations to the IAEA and other international bodies on nuclear energy issues, including leading efforts to strengthen the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) and the Waste Management Convention; and 5) coordinating closely with the Department of Energy on USG efforts to convert HEU-fueled research reactors to LEU, spent fuel return efforts, and transport of HEU and plutonium, including coordinating the international aspects of the U.S. Reduced Enrichment for Research and Test Reactor program.

Nuclear Safety: Officers will have lead responsibility for nuclear safety, including radioactive source security efforts in the Department and will draw upon their significant scientific and technical expertise. Key functions will include: 1) developing and coordinating bilateral and multilateral efforts to secure radioactive sources, including providing technical advice to the IAEA; 2) coordinating and developing USG nuclear safety policies within various fora, including the IAEA and the G-8 Nuclear Safety and Security Group; 3) leads efforts to implement the 1995 G-7/Ukraine Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Closing Chernobyl; 4) coordinates interagency efforts to implement the Nuclear Safety Convention and secure ratification of the convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage; 5) oversees USG technical nuclear safety assistance to European and NIS states; and 6) coordinating with the ISN office of CPI and the Bureau of Verification, Compliance, and Implementation on the development of emerging technologies to advance Presidential initiatives in the fields of counterproliferation and nuclear nonproliferation.

Developing, Improving, and Operationalizing Nuclear Nonproliferation Export Controls: Officers will have the lead role for coordinating and operationalizing multilateral efforts to improve nuclear nonproliferaton export controls. Key functions will include: leading efforts to support and strengthen international nuclear export control regimes, including the NPT Exporters Committee (Zangger Committee), the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and the NSG�s Dual Use Regime (DUR). This office will coordinate closely with the ISN offices of CPI, WMDT, and ECC with regard to the coordination of overall USG efforts to promote more effective nuclear-related export controls.

Director: Dick Stratford


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