- Nevada lawmakers’ offensive over reports of resuming nuclear testing by Trumps administration
- Bill to take away further funding of nuclear testing brought forward
- While Nevada isn’t mentioned as the testing location, the state’s history points to it being a forefront location
- Rep. Dina Titus believes going after funding is the only effective way to stop any proposed testing
- The report claimed Russia and China were conducting low-yield nuclear tests
The last two weeks have seen Nevada lawmakers’ being offensive over the discussion of the resumption of nuclear testing by Trump’s administration as revealed by a Washington Post report.
Bill to stop funding further testing brought forward
Several lawmakers including Rep. Steve Horsford and Rep. Dina Titus have brought forward a bill that would see further funding of nuclear testing stopped. This, as they say, is likely to be an effective way to stop further testing.
Democratic Rep. Steve Horsford’s district stretches to the state’s rural areas at the North of Las Vegas and includes the Nevada National Security Site. This was the last location to conduct a nuclear test back in 1992.
The representative signed the Preserving Leadership Against Nuclear Explosives Testing (PLANET) Act last week. The legislation, carried by Democratic Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey, sees the restriction of funds directed to expand testing in the fiscal year starting on July 1.
While Nevada is not mentioned as the testing location, the state’s history as of 1992 and the Nevada National Security Site in the state located 60 miles north of Las Vegas point to Nevada being the preferred location.
Subcritical testing still happens at the site but without the use of a surrogate material or plutonium, therefore, restricting any nuclear chain explosion or reaction.
After both the US and Russia paused nuclear testing in the late 90s, a Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty was adopted by the UN to prohibit testing. However, this has not been put into effect since the US Senate among other eight countries like Pakistan and India have not ratified the treaty.
Democratic Rep. Dina Titus who also signed the bill and claimed that going after funding would be the only effective way to stop any proposed nuclear testing. Her district makes up the Las Vegas Strip and Las Vegas proper.
Trump had claimed that the US would not seek ratification in the 2018 Nuclear Posture Review.
Titus likens the situation with what’s happening wat Yucca Mountains and says that the state can protest and sue. ‘Because this is national security, I think they’d (federal government) even have a harder time stopping this.’ She said.
Rally to support the legislation
Horsford rallied politicians from affected areas to raise their voices and support the legislation to have the local consent made on any nuclear matter.
After the report was revealed, there burst a political outcry from the Democrats with Joe Biden, former Vice President, terming Trump’s reasoning ‘delusional’.
Although no public evidence is available and with the two countries denying the allegations, the Washington Post report claimed that Russia and China were conducting low-yield nuclear tests and that Trump administration officials had raised concerns on the same.
In a statement released by Joe Biden, the resumption of nuclear testing would prompt the same in other countries and would ‘undermine the US nuclear nonproliferation goals.’
For Titus, the bill on the table would not affect any activities on the current nuclear stockpile but would just push back any testing. She said that she was determined and that they would not drop the fight.
‘We’re going to stay on top of him.’ Titus said.