Democratic lawmakers on the House Homeland Security Committee raised misgivings about the CFATS reauthorization bill during a subcommittee hearing on the newly proposed legislation.
Three anti-nuclear protestors who in 2012 broke into the Y-12 National Security Complex, including a now 84-year-old nun, received sentences ranging from nearly three years to more than five years during a Feb. 18 hearing at the federal court in Knoxville, Tenn.
A limited size inspector cadre for the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards program means that the Homeland Security Department may be supposed to start re-inspecting chemical facilities for security plan compliance before it has finished the work of conducting the first round of inspections on all regulated facilities, says the Congressional Research Service.
Seven countries have removed all or most of their weapons-usable nuclear materials since the beginning of 2012--Austria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Mexico, Sweden, Ukraine and Vietnam--says the Nuclear Threat Initiative.
Whoever stole a truck carrying radioactive material in Mexico Dec. 2 probably did not know what was inside, said experts on terrorism and smuggling from the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism.
The continuing resolution that funds the government through Jan. 15 restored the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards program, continuing both its existence and doubts about its long-term stability. Congress first directed the Homeland Security Department in the fiscal 2007 DHS appropriations bill (P.L. 109-295) to establish a chemical facility counterterrorism security regulation program, and hasn't since authorized CFATS into law through its own statute.
Until a new spending bill becomes law, resident inspectors located on-site at nuclear reactors and workers in the NRC office of inspector general will stay on the job without pay, but employees responsible for routine licensing and inspection of nuclear materials and waste licensees will be at home.
In the event of a government shutdown, 343 of the approximately 3,000 federal employees at the National Nuclear Security Administration would continue to report to work in order to ensure continuity in the maintenance and safeguarding of nuclear weapons, international nonproliferation activities and servicing deployed naval reactors, the Energy Department says.
After several years where the Nuclear Regulatory Commission discontinued its review of the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste site, resuming it won't be a seamless process, NRC Chairwoman Allison Macfarlane told a House panel Sept. 10. "The staff that we had originally assigned to work on the safety evaluation report have since been reassigned. A number of them have retired," she said.
The security of Pakistan's nuclear arsenal commands an extraordinary amount of attention from the intelligence community, The Washington Post says in an article based on documents it obtained from former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden. Concern over Pakistan's nuclear weapons is hardly new though, and an article (.pdf) published Sept. 4 by the Center for Strategic and International Studies argues that fears over the security of those weapons has been misplaced.