The Project for the CTBT supports the work of NGOs and experts to build public and policymaker understanding of the CTBT.

In 1996, the United States was the first nation to sign the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), which “prohibits any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion.” The CTBT helps curb the spread of nuclear weapons and establishes a global monitoring network to detect and deter cheating. The time for the CTBT is now.

Project News

Five Chinese Test Detection Stations Certified

By Shervin Taheran

In just twelve months, China has certified its first five International Monitoring System (IMS) stations, of the twelve it is treaty-bound to certify in order to realize the completion of the global nuclear test detection system managed by the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO).

China, as well as the United States, are two of eight countries left which need to ratify the CTBT for the 1996 treaty to enter into force. Both countries have signed, but not ratified, the treaty.

NPR Rejects CTBT Ratification; NNSA Shortens Testing Readiness Timeline

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre and Daryl Kimball

The Trump administration’s new Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) asserts that “the United States does not support the ratification of the CTBT,” even though the United States and 182 other nations have signed the treaty, and even though there is no technical need to resume nuclear testing.*

The review, which generally defines U.S. policy regarding the role of nuclear weapons in security strategy, says “the United States will continue to support the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Preparatory Committee” and “the related International Monitoring System and the International Data Center.”

The NPR calls upon other states not to conduct nuclear testing and states that “[t]he United States will not resume nuclear explosive testing unless necessary to ensure the safety and effectiveness of the U.S. arsenal ….”

Notable Read: “Utilizing Article XIV Conferences to Boost the Two Norms that Matter Most”

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre

Michael Krepon, co-founder of the Stimson Center, highlights the importance of the norms against nuclear use and testing in a Jan. 4 blog post. While applauding UNSCR 2310 as a step in the right direction, he regrets that it does not prevent “boll weevils with the Trump Administration and on Capitol Hill” from seeking to tear down impediments to resuming nuclear testing. To continue to bolster the nuclear testing taboo, he recommends reinvigorating CTBT Article XIV conferences, which focus on advancing towards the treaty’s entry into force. The full article is available here

Notable Read: "How Young People Are Trying to Stop Nuclear Weapons Testing"

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre

Sarah Bidgood, senior research associate at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, and Susan le Jeune d’Allegeerschecque, British High Commissioner to Canada, extol the value of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization Youth Group in an editorial published Jan. 1 in Teen Vogue. The group, launched in 2016, includes more than 300 students and young professionals from around the globe and seeks to promote the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and its verification regime.