NAPSNet 23 February 2012

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"NAPSNet 23 February 2012", NAPSNet Weekly Report, February 23, 2012, http://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-weekly/napsnet-23-february-2012/

DETERRENCE: US weighing steep nuclear arms cuts, Robert Burns, Associated Press (14 February 2012)

The Obama administration is weighing options for sharp new cuts to the U.S. nuclear force from a current treaty limit of 1,550 deployed strategic warheads. No final decision has been made, but Obama is considering at least three options for lower total numbers of deployed strategic nuclear weapons cutting to around 1,000 to 1,100, 700 to 800, or 300 to 400.

DPRK: CFRK warns S. Korean warmongers of merciless punishment, KCNA News (20 February 2011)

North Korea denounced upcoming joint military exercises between the US and ROK, calling them “moves for a war against the DPRK” and threatening “punishment thousands-fold severer than the past Yonphyong Island shelling.” The statement follows visits by Kim Jong-Un to several military units in the North. The unusually harsh reaction to the annual exercise seems to be an attempt to build Kim Jong-Un’s reputation as a tough military leader.

CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION: Adaptation to climate change: Formulating policy under uncertainty, Leo Dobes, CCEP working paper 1201, Crawford School of Economics and Government, Australian National University (ANU), Canberra, Australia (January 2012) [PDF, 658 KB]

Economists were able to formulate and recommend policy approaches for reducing emissions of greenhouse gases (mitigation) by drawing on an existing body of economic theory related to externalities. However, no comparably straightforward approach has yet emerged in the adaptation literature, possibly due to the diffuse nature of climatic effects that may occur in very diverse geographical locations.

ENERGY SECURITY: Debate surrounds race to export America’s natural gas, Bill Lascher, InsideClimate News (21 February 2012)

Shale gas output expansion and reduced production costs have producers seeking to build infrastructure to export US natural gas. Energy companies tout job creation and trade deficit reductions benefits of new exports. Consumers, including manufacturers, fear increased domestic prices for gas and gas-fired electricity, as indicated in analysis done by the Energy Information Administration. More use of coal for generation could also result.

GOVERNANCE AND CIVIL SOCIETY: Nanjing suspends ties with Nagoya after mayor disputes massacre, Japan Today (22 February 2012)

Nanjing suspended ties with its Japanese sister city of over 30 years, Nagoya, after comments by Nagoya’s mayor casting doubt over the events of the Nanjing Massacre of 1945, leading to Beijing submitting an official complaint to Tokyo and an outcry from Chinese netizens. Ties between Japan and the ROK are also being strained by renewed claims over the Dokdo Islets by representatives in Japan’s Shimane Prefecture and planned ROK projects on the islets.

Note: We regret that the Austral Security section is not included in this week’s NAPSNet report and apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

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