Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Nuke and NonPro Highlights of the Conference Agreement on the FY08 Defense Authorization Bill

The Center’s Chris Hellman released his Highlights of the Conference Agreement on the FY08 Defense Authorization bill (H.R. 1585/S. 1547) today.

The House and Senate conferees completed their work on H.R. 1585, the FY’08 Defense Authorization bill, on December 6. The bill includes $506.9 billion for the Department of Defense and the nuclear weapons activities of the Department of Energy. The bill also authorizes $189.4 billion for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. This funding is NOT counted as part of the $506.9 billion.

The full House is expected to take up consideration of the legislation on Tuesday, December 11.

Included below are highlights, funding provisions, and legislative provisions relating to nuclear weapons and nonproliferation issues.


Reliable Replacement Warhead (RRW) – Provides $66 million in funding for the Reliable Replacement Warhead (RRW), $22.8 million below the request, and restricts RRW program activities to phase 2A levels or below, design definition and cost study.

DoD Cooperative Threat Reduction Program (“Nunn-Lugar”) – Increase funding by $80 million from Administration request to $428 million, expanded the program to countries outside the former Soviet Union and repealed all the required annual certifications that encumbered the program.

Conventional Trident Conversion Program – The administration requested $175.4 million for research and development and advanced procurement for the Navy’s program to convert a portion of the Trident ballistic missile submarine fleet to launch conventionally armed missiles. The conference agreement includes no funding for Trident conversion, and allocates $100 million for conventional “Prompt Global Strike” program. Under General Provisions, conferees also extended annual reporting requirements on prompt global strike capabilities through 2009.

Missile Defenses in Europe – Reduced the budget request of $310.4 million for deployment of the proposed European missile defense system by $85 million to limit the use of funds for construction or deployment until Poland and the Czech Republic approve deployment.

National Missile Defense deployment – Require a certification from the Secretary of Defense that the Block 2006 Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system is operationally effective before deploying more than 40 Ground-Based Interceptors (GBIs) at Fort Greely, Alaska.

Iran missile defense deployment – State that the policy of the United States is to develop, test, and deploy an effective defense against Iranian ballistic missile threats, and to encourage the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to accelerate its missile defense efforts.

U.S. Strategic Posture Commission – Establishes a 12 member congressional commission “to look at the strategic posture of the United States in the broadest sense,” meaning that “conventional force structures, as well as nuclear force structures, must be included in the overall review and assessment of the strategic posture of the United States.” The commission is asked to include a threat assessment, a detailed review of nuclear weapons policy and strategy, and an examination of non-nuclear alternatives to nuclear weapons (both kinetic and non-kinetic). The Commission’s report would be due December 1, 2008.

Nuclear Posture Review – Directs the Secretary of Defense and Secretary of Energy to conduct a review of the nuclear posture of the United States for the next 5 to 10 years. The new nuclear posture review (NPR) would be submitted to Congress in December 2009 (Section 1070). The Bush administration hasn’t conducted a thorough assessment of U.S. nuclear doctrine and policy since the 2001 Nuclear Posture Review.


Dept. of Energy nonproliferation programs
Request: $1.723 billion
House: $1.818 billion
Senate: $1.86 billion
Conference: $1.953 billion, $230 million above the request

DoD Cooperative Threat Reduction Program (“Nunn-Lugar”)
Request: $348 million
House: $398 million
Senate: $448 million
Conference: $428 million

National Nuclear Security Administration
Request: $9.4 billion
House: $9.5 billion
Senate: $9.5 billion
Conference: $9.6 billion, $189 million above the request

Environmental and Other Defense Activities
Request: $6.4 billion
House: $6.4 billion
Senate: $6.3 billion
Conference: $6.4 billion, $4 million above the request


Airborne Laser Program (ABL) – Provides $513.8 million, $35 million below the request. The House provided $298.8 million, and the Senate included $348.8 million.

U.S. Space Protection Strategy – Calls on the Secretary of Defense and Director of National Intelligence to set forth the policy of the United States “with respect to the priority within the Nation’s space programs on the protection of national security space systems.” The strategy must explain planning through 2025 and the first report on the strategy would be due six months after the date of enactment. The conferees highlighted “the growing threat to and vulnerability of” U.S. space assets, especially after the “January 11, 2007 Chinese anti-satellite test and other counterspace developments.” Conferees suggest that Space Situational Awareness capabilities “could mitigate such vulnerabilities but continue to be under-funded.”

Destruction of U.S. Chemical Weapons Stockpile – Conferees included a sense of the Congress that the United States should “remain committed to making every effort” to destroy its chemical weapons stockpile by April 2012, the deadline included in the Chemical Weapons Convention. However, conferees included a binding provision that requires the destruction of the stockpile by December 31, 2017. Progress and “accelerated funding options” reports, including life cycle cost estimates for each facility, are required to survey what it will take to complete destruction by 2017.

Nuclear Power Systems for Major Combatant Naval Vessels – Requires that all new classes of submarines, aircraft carriers, cruisers, large escorts for carrier strike groups, expeditionary strike groups, and vessels comprising a sea base have integrated nuclear power systems. The Navy’s first test under this new requirement will be the next generation cruiser CG(X) (which will now become the “CGN(X)” to reflect nuclear power system).

Non-Federal Development of Chemical Agent Defense – Authorizes the Secretary of Defense to provide small quantities of toxic chemicals or their precursors to a State or local government, or a private entity incorporated in the United States, for development or testing of material designed to be used for defensive purposes. All such transfers must be consistent with the Chemical Weapons Convention.

WMD Civil Support Teams – Authorizes the creation of two additional Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Teams. These National Guard-equipped and certified teams’ mission is to assist local first-responders in determining the nature of a terrorist attacks, provide medical and technical advice, and pave the way for identification and arrival of follow-on assets.

Pakistan Frontier Corps – Allows the Secretary of Defense to use up to $75 million in O&M funds during FY’08 to enhance the ability of the Pakistan Frontier Corps to conduct counterterrorist operations along the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. Authorized assistance may include equipment, supplies, and training.

For additional information on the Fiscal Year 2008 defense budget, visit the Center’s website: http://www.armscontrolcenter.org/policy/securityspending


J. said...

Would love to visit the Center's website, but it's password-protected.

Jeff Lindemyer said...

The old link was being redirected through an email server which required a password. The new link is straight to the Security spending page.