Obama Administration Slashes Nuclear Security Funding: FY13 Budget Request for US International WMD Security Programs

The Obama Administration’s fiscal year 2013 (FY13) budget request dramatically reduces funding for international weapons of mass destruction (WMD) security programs from the FY12 appropriated level. Funding for National Nuclear Security Administration programs are nearly a quarter (23.3 percent) below the FY12 appropriation. While the Department of Defense’s Cooperative Threat Reduction program is increased slightly overall, CTR’s Global Nuclear Security program is targeted for a 17 percent cut. Funding within the Department of State is also reduced with cuts to WMD Terrorism, Global Threat Reduction, and Export Control and Related Border Security Assistance programs.

National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)

  • Down $293.3 million to $960.6million from the FY12 appropriation of $1.2 billion
    • A cut of $206 million to $311 million to International Nuclear Materials Protection and Cooperation program, including a 65 percent reduction for the Second Line of Defense subprogram.
    • A cut of $34 million to $466 million for the Global Threat Reduction Initiative, including a 19 percent cut to the Nuclear and Radiological Material Removal subprogram.

Department of Defense (DoD) Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) Program

  • Up $10.9 million to $519.1 million from the FY12 appropriation of $508.2 million
    • A cut of $21.3 million for the Global Nuclear Security program to $99.8 million. This program now accounts for less than 20 percent of the total CTR budget.
    • An increase of $16.9 million over the FY12 appropriation to $276.4 million for the Cooperative Biological Engagement program to support additional engagement with African nations and continue projects in the former Soviet states and Asia.

Department of State Selected Global Threat Reduction Programs

  • Down $12 million to $155.4 million from the FY12 appropriation of $167.4 million
    • A decrease of nearly 10 percent from the FY12 appropriation for the Export Control and Related Border Security Assistance program to $55 million.
    • A 7 percent cut to the Global Threat Reduction program to $64 million from theFY12 appropriation.
    • A 16 percent cut for the WMD Terrorism program from the FY12 level to $5 million.

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Michelle Cann was the Director of Operations and Projects at the Partnership for Global Security. She is the co-author of a series of reports tracking the outcomes of the Nuclear Security Summit process and a member of the Fissile Materials Working Group. 

J. Raphael Della Ratta is president of Commercial Management Company and a board member of the Partnership for Global Security.