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In this episode, Dr. Natasha Bajema, Director of the Converging Risks Lab (CRL) and Andrea Rezzonico, Deputy to the CEO of the Council on Strategic Risks and Deputy Director of CRL, co-host an interview with the Hon. Dan Poneman, who currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Council on Strategic Risks.
We discuss the implications of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine for nuclear energy and talk about how the U.S. could reinvigorate its leadership role on providing nuclear fuel and technology to countries interested in off-setting carbon emissions by generating electricity with nuclear power.
In addition to his role on the CSR Board, Mr. Poneman is president and chief executive officer of Centrus Energy Corp. He has had a distinguished career with the U.S. government, serving from 2009 to 2014 as the Deputy Secretary of Energy and chief operating officer of the U.S. Department of Energy. His responsibilities spanned the range of U.S. energy policies and programs – hydrocarbons, renewables, nuclear, and efficiency – including cybersecurity, project management, national security, and international cooperation. Mr. Poneman has published widely on national security issues. His most recent book, Double Jeopardy: Combating Nuclear Terror and Climate Change, was released by the MIT Press in May 2019.
This interview with the Hon. Dan Poneman is part of a series of pioneering work by CSR’s Converging Risks Lab that began in 2017. Between 2017 and 2020, CRL took on its first project, the Climate-Nuclear-Security Project (CNSP), which brought together the experience and expertise housed within the Center for Climate and Security (CCS) and the Nolan Center on Strategic Weapons (The Nolan Center), as well as the broader climate security and nuclear security policy communities. The CNSP recognizes that climate and nuclear risks are growing more complex and interconnected, and are beginning to converge in new ways. Understanding and managing this risk landscape requires climate, nuclear and security experts to break down issue sector barriers and develop joint solutions.
In 2022, CRL is thrilled to begin a new, related line of work which builds upon the previous project to help reinvigorate U.S. leadership on nuclear energy issues, with a view toward improving nuclear safety, security and nonproliferation.