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Nuclear Ban Treaty obligates countries to assist nuclear victims and remediate environments

Policy Approaches Addressing the Ongoing Humanitarian and Environmental Consequences of Nuclear Weapons: A Commentary, Wiley Online Library Nate Van Duzer Alicia Sanders‐Zakre 20 January 2021


The 2017 Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) not only bans nuclear weapons, it obligates its states parties to engage in assisting victims and remediating contaminated environments (Articles 6 and 7). As states and civil society consider the best methods to implement these provisions, it is important to take stock and review existing policy approaches addressing the ongoing humanitarian and environmental consequences of nuclear weapons. This practitioner commentary, written by members of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), which was awarded the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize for its advocacy for the TPNW, reviews existing programs of victim assistance and environmental remediation. It highlights key considerations for policy makers seeking to improve on the existing mechanisms.

……….. Key takeaways

Dozens of identified sites around the world remain contaminated by nuclear weapons use, production and testing, and there is no one standard for their remediation. Notably, there is no widely accepted standard to determine how clean is clean, or how to monitor radiation levels over time. Speed and thoroughness of cleanup vary widely as well, and the cost to remediate each site ranges from millions of US$ to billions. Even remediated sites are often still somewhat closed to the public. The nuclear‐armed states have historically done the most to direct and carry out the cleanup of sites, even if the test site is not under those states’ jurisdiction. However, nuclear‐armed states do not always respond to local requests for action.

January 25, 2021 - Posted by | 2 WORLD, politics international, weapons and war

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