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Report on the G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction

Deauville, May 26-27, 2011 (published May 27, 2011)
[Version française]

Project Implementation
   Chemical Weapons Destruction
   Nuclear Submarine Dismantlement
   Dismantlement Related Work
   Disposition of Fissile Materials
   Nuclear Security and Security of Radioactive Substances
   Redirection of Former Weapons Scientists
Expansion of the Global Partnership
Implementation challenges and solutions


1. Nine years after its launch, in 2002 at the Kananaskis Summit, the Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction has expanded beyond the G8, to become a large-scale collaborative international initiative, counting today 15 additional partners.

2. Thanks to the contributions of the participating members, the Global Partnership (GP) has made tangible contributions to international security, through specific cooperation projects, initially in Russia, and increasingly worldwide. It has achieved measurable results in all the key priorities identified by G8 Leaders at Kananaskis, including the destruction of chemical weapons, dismantlement of decommissioned nuclear submarines, the disposition of fissile materials and the redirection of former weapons scientists.

3. To ensure this measurable and considerable success, work remains to be completed on projects in the Russian priority areas of chemical weapons destruction and nuclear submarine dismantlement, mainly to go forward in safe and secure management of spent fuel and radioactive waste.

4. The Global Partnership continues to address WMD proliferation and terrorism challenges worldwide. In accordance with the Kananaskis principles, efforts are being made by several partners through their national programmes on areas including the physical protection of nuclear and radiological materials and other measures to strengthen nuclear security, biological security, scientist engagement projects, combating illicit trafficking, providing technical assistance to third countries, where appropriate, to improve their national export control systems and to facilitate the implementation of UNSCR 1540.

5. At the Muskoka Summit in 2010, G8 Leaders declared: "we welcome the concrete achievements and measurable results of the GP against the spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction, launched at the Kananaskis Summit in 2002, and we remain committed to completing priority projects in Russia. We recognize the continuing threat before us, and we all recognize the importance of continuing our joint efforts as partners to address them in the years ahead. Toward that end we ask our senior experts to evaluate the results of the GP to date, as a point of departure for developing options for programming and financing beyond 2012, focussing on nuclear and radiological security, bio-security, scientist engagement and facilitation of implementation of UNSCR 1540, as well as the potential participation of new countries in the initiative." Building upon this tasking the GPWG prepared an assessment document.

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Project Implementation

Chemical Weapons Destruction

6. The Global Partnership has contributed to fund construction of seven destruction facilities in Russia to assist in the elimination of chemical weapons stockpiles, pursuant to Russia's obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). Significant progress has been made since 2002 as a result of funding from Russia and other GP Partners. As of December 2010, nearly 50% of Russia's chemical weapons stockpile (19,600 tonnes) has been destroyed.

7. Stockpile destruction operations have been completed at two facilities: Gorny (operated from 2002 to 2005 and built with funding from the European Union, Finland, Germany, the Netherlands and Poland) and Kambarka (operated from 2005 to 2009 and built with assistance of the European Union, Finland, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, and Switzerland).

8. Chemical weapons destruction operations began in March 2009 and are still in progress at the Shchuch'ye facility, as a result of funding from Belgium, Canada, the Czech Republic, the European Union, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Facilities at Maradykovsky and Leonidovka (funded primarily by Russia with assistance from Switzerland) are also operational. Additionally, destruction operations began in November 2010 at Pochep facility, built with assistance from Germany and Switzerland, and are projected to start in 2011at Kizner facility, being built with assistance from Canada.

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Nuclear Submarine Dismantlement

9. Since 2002, substantial progress has been achieved in dismantling decommissioned nuclear submarines withdrawn from the Russian Navy at various sites across Northwest Russia and the Russian Far East.

10. In regards to the 120 decommissioned nuclear submarines released by Russia in the Northwest region, 117 have been dismantled, while two submarines are being dismantled and one is to be dismantled. In the Russian Far East, 73 out of 78 decommissioned submarines released by Russia have been dismantled with only five submarines remaining. Through the ongoing contributions of GP Partners, it is expected that Russian submarine dismantlement work will be completed in general by 2012.

11. Russia has provided significant funding for these projects and has been supported by contributions from Australia, Canada, the European Union, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, the Republic of Korea, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

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Dismantlement Related Work

12. In addition to the dismantlement of submarines, the Global Partnership projects also addressed the development of infrastructure to ensure nuclear material from the dismantlement process is made safe and secure. Partners are also completing essential related activities including radioactive waste (RW) management and spent nuclear fuel (SNF) management, transportation for storage and/or treatment, and the rehabilitation of former on-shore technical bases

13. A long-term storage facility for submarine reactor compartments and radiation hazardous parts is now operational at Sayda Bay, with German major contribution; as well, the construction of a regional center for processing and long-term storage of RW is now underway. Progress is also ongoing for design of a solid and liquid RW management facility and a SNF management and retrieval facility at Andreeva Bay with funding from Italy, Norway, Sweden, and the United Kingdom and the Northern Dimension Environmental partnership (NDEP), managed by EBRD. The construction of the first units started in 2004 and the commissioning of the SNF retrieval facility is scheduled for 2014 and the RW management facility for 2015, with retrieval of SNF, for despatch for reprocessing, expected to commence in 2014. In addition, the UK has funded installation of biological shielding over the SNF stores, the refurbishment of a laboratory and mentoring system, the construction of decontamination facilities and the construction of a maintenance facility.

14. Funding from France has supported a site rehabilitation program at the former Gremikha naval base, including work for SNF removal, and improvement of infrastructure of temporary and final destination sites, in order to assure safe and secure storage and treatment. France is also supporting upgrades to a nuclear waste incinerator at the Zvezdochka shipyard. Italy is providing funding for the construction of a multi-purpose naval vessel for the transportation of SNF and conditioned waste, dedicated containers for nuclear spent fuel and is also involved with the United States in funding projects for transportation of such containers to their final destinations. Japan has begun the process for providing equipment for a long-term storage facility for reactor compartments, where actual delivery at Razboynik Bay is expected to take place later and Germany, Italy, United Kingdom and the United States are funding physical protection, as well as environmental and equipment improvements at Atomflot, the Nerpa and Zvezdochka shipyards.

15. The NDEP "Nuclear Window", together with funding from other GP members, is financing a number of multilateral nuclear projects concerning the sites at Andreeva Bay and Gremikha, as well as SNF unloading from the Lepse vessel and Papa prototype submarine. A Strategic Master Plan for all nuclear-related activities in the Northwest of Russia has also been prepared under the NDEP "Nuclear Window".

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Disposition of Fissile Materials

16. On April 13, 2010, the governments of the United States and the Russian Federation signed a Protocol amending the 2000 Plutonium Management and Disposition Agreement in which each country commits to dispose no less than 34 metric tons of weapons-grade plutonium designated as no longer required for defence programmes (enough in total for 17,000 nuclear warheads). Consultations are now underway with the IAEA on a verification agreement for the U.S. and Russian disposition programs.

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Nuclear Security and Security of Radioactive Substances

17. With a view to securing radiological sources, the recovery of several hundred highly radioactive Radioisotopic Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs), which have been used to power Russian lighthouses from the Northern Sea Route, the Baltic Sea, and the Russian Far East has made significant progress and continues with support from Canada, Finland, France, Norway, Sweden and the United States. As of December 2010, 539 RTGs have been dismantled and replaced. The work for the western part of the concerned areas is expected to be completed in 2012 with the retrieval of the last 38 RTGs from the Baltic Sea. The issue of the remaining RTG's transportation and dismantlement should be settled in 2012.

18. GP partners also continue to coordinate efforts to assist Ukraine in converting the Chernobyl site into a stable and environmentally-safe condition, including the construction of a shelter for the damaged reactor and storage for spent nuclear fuel. The United Kingdom and the European Union are funding the design and construction of a centralized, long-term storage facility for highly radioactive sources within the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, and Finland, France, Germany, Sweden, and the United States are providing assets needed to package and transport these sources to the facility once it is complete. France is involved in recovery of highly radioactive sources on the Ukrainian operator RADON sites for their shipment to the future centralized storage.

19. Projects aimed at strengthening nuclear safety and security are also underway in Ukraine with support from Canada, France, the United States, and Sweden. The United Kingdom nuclear safety work in Ukraine has been completed. Japan is moving forward with the rehabilitation and provision of equipment for the "Kharkov Institute of Physics and Technology", while Germany is funding a project for the physical protection of radioactive sources at the Ukrainian state company IZOTOP.

20. The United States and Russia are partnering to place equipment for radiation detection at border crossings to detect and prevent the illicit cross-border trafficking of nuclear and radiological materials. GP Partners are working with Ukraine, with funding provided by Canada, the European Union, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, Sweden and the United States to help strengthen its capacity to prevent and detect nuclear smuggling.

21. A number of projects are being implemented in Russia to upgrade the physical protection and accounting systems of nuclear materials. Funding for these projects is being provided by Canada, the European Union, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States.

22. The UK has funded the construction of a SNF storage facility at the Russian nuclear icebreaker base at Atomflot, Murmansk, to store icebreaker SNF currently stored on the icebreaker supply vessel Lotta. Transfer of SNF from the Lotta to the SNF storage facility is expected to be completed in 2011.

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Redirection of Former Weapons Scientists

23. Building on the Recommendations for a Coordinated Approach in the Field of Global WMD Knowledge Proliferation and Scientist Engagement, as agreed to by the GPWG during Italy's 2009 G-8 Presidency, GP Partners continue to address the human dimension of proliferation by funding projects to engage former WMD scientists or scientists with WMD-related expertise in the development of sustainable civilian research and other activities.

24. Through the International Science and Technology Centre (ISTC) in Moscow and the Science and Technology Centre of Ukraine (STCU) in Kiev, 4000 research projects, as well as capacity building activities, have been funded by GP Partners. Members of the ISTC and STCU have recognized the success of the Centres in providing economic support for scientists during a transition period. The future of the ISTC and the STCU is currently under review. Russia has decided to withdraw from ISTC. The funding parties are continuing their science cooperation with other ISTC members and are engaged in ongoing projects there, including in the area of bio-safety and bio security.

25. The UK's Closed Nuclear Cities/Centres Partnership (CNCP) is active in six Russian closed cities and in institutes in Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. CNCP is on course to meet its target by March 2012, of establishing around 3,000 sustainable jobs, approximately half of which are for WMD-related specialists. Canada recently became a donor party through a piggybacking arrangement with CNCP.

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Expansion of the Global Partnership

26. In 2008, G8 Leaders agreed that the Global Partnership must evolve to address new challenges by implementing projects worldwide on the basis of the Kananaskis principles and guidelines.

27. To date, in their national programs, several GP Partners including Canada, the European Union, Finland, France, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, the Republic of Korea, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States, as confirmed by the projects listed in the Annex to this Report, are pursuing WMD proliferation threat reduction projects, related to nuclear and radiological security, biological security and scientist engagement in several regions of the world including Caucasus, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, Africa, the Middle East and the Americas. For instance, the EU has carried out cooperation projects in a number of third countries in the areas of nuclear/radiological security and biological security and has developed, with its partners, regional centres of excellence. These projects reflect the resolve of Partners to address evolving WMD challenges through the Global Partnership while continuing work toward completion of projects in Russia and Ukraine.

28. In line with the Muskoka Leaders' Declaration, Partners continue to provide information regarding the scope of their global activities, included in the Annex to this report.

29. An expansion of the membership of the Global Partnership as a means to facilitate global programming remains a priority. The GPWG will also continue to coordinate efforts to engage with additional potential new participants. According to the decision taken in 2008 in Toyako and reaffirmed in 2009 in L'Aquila, new members accepting Kananaskis principles and guidelines should be included in the expanded GP.

30. Members of the GP attended a G8 meeting at Vancouver with the Chairman of the 1540 Committee and received a briefing by an expert from the 1540 Committee on the current status of UNSCR 1540 implementation. Some G8 members used a format developed by the 1540 Committee's experts to respond to 37 separate assistance requests.

31. Discussion of the extension of the Global Partnership was also initiated.

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Implementation challenges and solutions

32. Adequate information submission, site access and tax exemption in accordance with the existing legal requirements of donors and recipients are essential. While there remains room for improving project implementation, our experience has shown that it is possible to overcome many bureaucratic obstacles to progress by sustaining good working level relationships and a strong commitment to mutual cooperation and understanding, without compromising requirements for financial probity, safety standards or national security. Reliable long-term planning and predictable disbursement of funds are equally essential for successful completion of projects.

33. Conscious of the need for ongoing attention to specific issues affecting implementation, and of the value of regular exchanges among all participants, the Global Partnership Working Group will continue to serve as the forum to identify and resolve any problems that arise. The Group, which brings together all countries participating in the Global Partnership, G8 and non-G8 alike, will also continue to provide an appropriate forum to exchange information and best practices.

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Source: G8 and G20 French Presidency


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