Renewed interest in nuclear energy has raised questions about the effectiveness of global cooperation to ensure nuclear safety and security and prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons. Madame Fréchette explains the conclusions of a recent CIGI study which assesses the likely shape of the so-called nuclear renaissance and offers recommendations on ways to make nuclear global governance more effective.
Madame Louise Fréchette is a Distinguished Fellow at CIGI where she chairs a project on Nuclear energy and the challenges of global governance. She was a member of the IAEA's Commission of Eminent Persons on nuclear energy challenges and the future of the IAEA which produced its report in May 2008. In September 2008, she was made a member of the Advisory Board to the International Commission on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament established by the governments of Australia and Japan.
Mme. Fréchette is Chair of the Board of Directors of the Pearson Peacekeeping Centre and serves on the board of several other organizations in Canada and in the United States. From 1998 to 2006, Mme. Fréchette was Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations. The first incumbent of the post, she assisted Secretary-General Kofi Annan in the full range of his responsibilities. Prior to this, Mme. Fréchette pursued a career in the Public Service of Canada, serving notably as Ambassador to Argentina and Uruguay (1985-1988), Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations (1992-1994), Associate Deputy Minister of Finance (1995) and Deputy Minister of National Defence (1995-1998).
Madame Fréchette is an Officer of the Order of Canada.
Bomb or other warhead that derives its force from nuclear fission, nuclear fusion, or both and is delivered by an aircraft, missile, or other system. Fission weapons, commonly known as atomic bombs, release energy by splitting the nuclei of uranium or plutonium atoms; fusion weapons, known as hydrogen bombs or thermonuclear bombs, fuse nuclei of the hydrogen isotopes tritium or deuterium. Most nuclear weapons actually combine both processes. Nuclear weapons are the most potent explosive devices ever invented. Their destructive effects include not only a blast equivalent to thousands of tons of TNT but also blinding light, searing heat, and lethal radioactive fallout. The number of nuclear weapons reached a peak of some 32,000 for the United States in 1966 and some 33,000 for the Soviet Union in 1988. Since the end of the Cold War, both countries have decommissioned or dismantled thousands of warheads. Other declared nuclear powers are the United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan, and North Korea. Israel is widely assumed to possess nuclear weapons. Some countries, such as South Africa, Brazil, Argentina, and Iraq, have acknowledged pursuing nuclear weapons in the past but have abandoned their programs. See alsoNuclear Non-proliferation Treaty; Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty.