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NEWSLETTER: Science for Peace

Anonymous — June 1984

Many small projects are in progress or have already resulted in reports or newspaper articles. This report, however, deals with large projects requiring funding from agencies or foundations. It includes possible studies on accidental nuclear war, applied games theory, and inquiries into the causes of wars since 1945.

A project on the consequences for Canada of nuclear war has been started by Prof. Tom Hutchinson of the Institute of Environmental Studies, U. of Toronto, with the cooperation of Science for Peace. A major element in it will be Nuclear Winter. People wishing to take part in this study should contact Prof. Hutchinson. The Royal Society of Canada has been asked by the Federal Ministry of Environment to form a committee to review the impact of nuclear war on the environment. Professor Ken Hare is chairing the committee.

In the past year we have kept in close touch with the Division of Arms Control and Disarmament, Dept. of External Affairs, which has adequate funds n()w for research on verification. The Division gives priority to research on Chemical Warfare Treaty verification and Comprehensive (Nuclear) Test Ban Treaty (CTB) verification. Science for Peace may undertake new work on chemical warfare. This matter will he considered upon receipt of a study of verification nearing completion at Queen’s University. A Chemical Warfare Treaty is perhaps the Arms Control Treaty most likely to be finalized in the next two years. We shall cooperate with the Department of External Affairs in its considerable efforts toward this.

There are several verification technologies relevant to a CTB treaty:

1. for explosions in the atmosphere: satellite observations and fallout;
2. for underground explosions: seismic detection, and fallout if there is a leak from the site of the explosion.

The Dept. of Energy, Mines and Resources (EMR) is managing the Canadian programme of seismic verification, technically and in worldwide linkage through ISDE (International Seismic Data Exchange). The Division of Arms Control and Disarmament will be supporting two further staff members in this field, in addition to the one recently hired. Specialized experts are needed and being hired. We should continue to monitor this work in case an opportunity should arise to be of service.

Radioactive air monitoring has been ignored by the Canadian Arms control community. The Swedish Government has, however, called for an international data exchange on atmospheric radioactivity and has pointed out its desirability for CTB Treaty verification, In Sweden an inexpensive air monitoring system has operated routinely for many years and has detected two Soviet underground nuclear explosions. We might usefully look into the possibility of such monitoring in Canada.

Science for Peace submitted a brief in 1982 to the Parliamentary Committee on External Affairs and National Defence regarding an International Satellite Monitoring Agency (ISMA); it is still resting there.

The Government’s position then was that the project would require U.S. cooperation. One purpose of ISMA was to lift the monopoly of satellite monitoring from the superpowers and put part of the responsibility with the U.N., which should be strengthened thereby. A copy of the ISMA brief was recently. sent to the Rt. Hon. Joe Clark’s commission on arms control.

We intend to cooperate with the Canadian Centre for Arms Control and Disarmament, a new research centre. Our good wishes go with its director, Dr. John Lamb, and his research director, Mr. Larry Hagen.

Another important step forward is the proposed new Canadian Institute for International Peace and Security which was promised in the Throne Speech in Dec. 1983. We have stressed to Mr. Geoffrey Pearson that such an Institute could fulfill important roles in Canada today. We have submitted a Brief on it to the Parliamentary Committee on National Defence and External Affairs which is currently holding hearings on Bill C-32. This Bill had two readings in the House of Commons.

MEMBERSHIP: We extend an invitation to join Science for Peace to all scientists (physical, life, behavioural and social), engineers, physicians, and others, whether from industry, business, or the professions. Membership includes a subscription to the BULLETIN and the right to participate in Chapter activities. Membership subscription: $25.00 (student/retired: $5.00). Make cheques payable to Science for Peace. We are registered as a charitable organization. Mail to: Science for Peace, University College, University of Toronto, Toronto, On., M5S lAl.

Contacts: office, xxx-xxxx; Derek Paul, secretary, xxx-xxxx; Raymond Kapral, treasurer, xxx-xxxx.