This is a Convocation Lecture given at Monmouth College on 18 November 2003. It was given in the context of Technology and the Human Condition and is still relevant today.
If the number of nuclear weapons is to be further reduced in the future, it is important that they be deployed in a survivable mode if their reduction is not to lead to an increased probability of use. Reducing nuclear force levels can lead to instability in a time of crisis.
The following letter was published in the June 5/June 6 2010 UK edition of the Financial Times:
“UK must keep to sea-based deterrent
The possibility was recently reported by James Blitz (‘Nuclear warhead total revealed’, May 27) – with regard to the Strategic Defence and Security Review – that according to ‘Whitehall insiders’ the SDSR ‘will contain an examination of whether Britain should move to a land or air-launched deterrent’. Such a move should be rejected.
The reason is simple: a British air or land-based deterrent is not survivable. This means there is an enormous incentive to move to a launch-on-warning policy. Nuclear forces must be survivable if the probability of nuclear use is not to be increased with decreasing arsenals. For countries without strategic depth like Britain and France this means a sea-based deterrent. That is why France has already eliminated its land-based nuclear component.
If Britain is to maintain a survivable deterrent it will have to anti-up the cost for new Tridents as the existing force ages. A minimum of three is needed to maintain one in its operational area – ie, one on alert, one in transit (where it could be vulnerable), and one in dry dock.
If we are to move to a world where the number of nuclear weapons is much reduced, careful attention must be paid to force-structure.”
Slides from a talk given at the Faculty Club of the University of California, Berkeley on 29 May 2010 for A Celebration of Hugh DeWitt’s Contributions on His Eightieth Birthday .
A talk given on 18 May 2010 at the 4th International Conference on Climate Change.
An exchange in Nature on the reliability of of U.S. nuclear weapons and the need for the Reliable Replacement Warhead (RRW).
The existing understanding of interglacial periods is that they are initiated by Milankovitch cycles enhanced by rising atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations.Â During interglacials, global temperature is also believed to be primarily controlled by carbon dioxide concentrations, modulated by internal processes such as the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the North Atlantic Oscillation.Â Recent Work challenges the fundamental bases of these conceptions.
Journal of Climatology, Volume 2014, Article ID 345482