walkitout (walkitout) wrote,
walkitout
walkitout

chile's nuclear materials

Last night on TRMS, a big section was devoted to the excitement of packaging up nuclear materials in Chile shortly before the big earthquake struck in late February, and then transporting it in the wake of all the damage to infrastructure including roads, power and port facilities. And doing it all very, very quietly. It was part of her coverage of the big nuclear meet-and-greet and Ukraine's announcement and so forth.

I had not seen any other coverage of this, but I've been busy lately. Here's an article, that covers how Chile got the nuclear materials in the first place:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article7095705.ece

"Like many countries, Chile acquired its uranium through a strategy aimed at preventing proliferation.

Over several decades under the so-called Atoms for Peace programme, states already in the nuclear club offered a deal to those eyeing membership: they would distribute highly enriched uranium provided it was used only for research and not weapons.

About 44,000lb of uranium was distributed to 50 countries from Jamaica to Vietnam."

I like this anti-proliferation effort better than that anti-proliferation effort, altho I respect them both in the context of their times. The prospect of dealing with all this stuff is daunting if not horrifying, but we _did_ start this particular game.

ETA: Additional coverage:

http://gsn.nti.org/gsn/nw_20100408_4630.php

The site hosting this article is a big operation focused on nuclear security issues. Needless to say, it is Their Week in the Sun.
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