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Eco Science - Thirteen - Disarmament

Eco Science - Thirteen - Disarmament

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12/22/2010

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ECOSCIENCE:
POPULATION,
RESOURCES,
ENVIRONMENT
PAULR.
EHRLICH
STANFORD
UNIVERSITY
ANNE
H.
EHRLICH
STANFORD
UNIVERSITY
JOHN
P.
HOLDREN
UNIVERSITY
OF
CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY
W.
H.
FREEMAN
AND
COMPANY
San
Francisco
 
RICH NATIONS,
POOR
NATIONS,
AND
INTERNATIONAL
CONFLICT
/ 91 7
In our view, the most serious risk associated withnuclear power
is the
attendant increase
in the
number
of
countries that have access to technology, materials,
and
facilities leading
to a
nuclear weapons capabil-
ity.
... If
widespread proliferation actually occurs,
it
will prove an extremely serious danger to U.S.security and to world peace and stability in
general.
86c
The
Ford group recommended that
the
U.S. defer
the
recycle of
plutonium
and the commercialization of the
breederreactor
and
that
it
seek
"common supplier
action
to ban the
export
of
such technology."
It
recommended
also
that
the
U.S.
and
other supplier nations provideassured supplies of slightly enriched uranium to othercountries
at
favorable prices,
a
plan whose drawbacks
we
have already mentioned above.
In
April 1977, PresidentCarter announced
a
nuclear policy
for his
administrationessentially congruent with
the
Ford Study's recommen-dation.While we
applaud
the progress represented by thepositions
taken
by the
Flowers, Ranger,
and
Ford reports
and by the
Carter administration's position,
our own
preferenceis for a
stronger stance.
We
believe thereshould
be an
absolute embargo
on the
export
of
enrich-ment
and
reprocessing technology
by any
nation.
86d
The
United States should
cajole
and, if necessary, coerce itsallies into compliance, using every incentive and/or
peaceful
sanction
at its
disposal. (The possibilities
are
considerable,
not
least
of
which
is the
fact
that WestGermany and France will be dependent on U.S. enricheduranium for their own nuclear power programs into the1980s.) Since the Soviets are also intensely concernedabout proliferation, there
is a
chance
that
they wouldcooperate. Countries that have power reactorsbut noenrichment or reprocessing capability could be supplied
with
low-enriched uranium
by the
sort
of
consortiummentioned above, but there is reason to question whether
any
additional
power reactors should
be
exported
by
anyone.
A universal
embargo
on
reactor exports
may
seem
a drastic
measure—certainly
drastic
enough
to
require rewritingthe
NPT—but
loweringtheprobability
of a
nuclear holocaust
is a
desperately important
task.
The
sort
of
pussyfooting that characterized attempts
to
stem proliferation before 1977
was not
merely
a
scandal
but a
threat
to the
survival
of
civilization.
Chemical,
biological, and environmental
weap-
ons.
Even if humanity does
manage
to stop the proli-
ferationof
nuclear weapons,
it
still must deal with
the
ever-increasing deadliness
of
conventional weapons
andthe
prospective horrors
of
chemical
and
biological war-
fare
(CBW)
and environmental warfare. Biological andchemical weapons, which could be nearly as destructive
lives as nuclear arms, seem to have some prospects ofbeing eventually
considered
"conventional."
87
Environ-mental warfare
is
newer
and
potentially
perhaps evenmore
threatening.
88
Achieving
disarmament.\
The
third element
of
difficulty
inchangingtherulesofinternational relations
is
uncertainty about
the
best
way to
achieve disarmament
and
security
in a
world where in
the
past securityhas_
usually
been provided by brute
force,,
either threatened
or
overtly exercised. Unfortunately,
the
effort
going into
the
study
of
peaceful
means
to
world security
has
been
infinitesimal
compared with that going into military
research,
although almost
no
area needs greater immedi-
ate
attention.
The
basic requirement
is
evident: once
again
it is a
change
in
human attitudes
so
that
the
in-group against
which
aggression
is
forbidden expandsto include
all
human
beings.
If
this could
be
accomplished,
jigf-iin'ty
might
heprovided
by an
armed international organization,
aglobal
analogue
of a
police force. Many people
have
recognized this
as a
goal,
but the way to
reach
it
remainsobscure
in a
world
where
factionalism seems,
if
anything
-
'—
,
——•*
TO
be
increasing.
The nrststep
necessarily
invn
1
'"''
S61
'Spurgeon Kceny
et
al.,
Nuclear
power
issues
and
choices.
8<rd
See also the chapter on proliferation in A.
Lovins,
Soft
energy
paths:Toward
a
durable
peace.
Tganization.J?ut
it
seems probable
that,
as
long
as
people
fail
to
comprehend
the
magnitude
of the danger,'
that step
will
be
impossible.
At the
very least, societies
87
J.
P.
Perry
Robinson, The special
case
of
chemical
and
biological
weapons;
see
also
Bo
Holmberg,
Biological
aspects
of
chemical
and
biological weapons.
88
For
example,
see
Chapter
11
and
Frank
Barnaby, The
spread
of thecapability to do
violence:
An
introduction
to
environmental warfare;Jozef
Goldblat,
The
prohibition
of
environmental
warfare; and
Bhupen-
dra M.
Jasani,
Environmental modification:
New
weapons
of
war?

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