US discloses size of nuclear stockpile for first time since 2018

US discloses size of nuclear stockpile for first time since 2018
© Getty Images

The Biden administration on Tuesday disclosed the size of the U.S. nuclear stockpile for the first time since 2018, the Trump administration having refused to disclose the information for the past two years.

According to the report provided by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), the U.S has 3,750 warheads as of September 2020.

"Increasing the transparency of states’ nuclear stockpiles is important to nonproliferation and disarmament efforts, including commitments under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and efforts to address all types of nuclear weapons, including deployed and nondeployed, and strategic and non-strategic," said the NNSA.

ADVERTISEMENT

The agency stated that, "This number represents an approximate 88 percent reduction in the stockpile from its maximum (31,255) at the end of fiscal year 1967, and an approximate 83 percent reduction from its level (22,217) when the Berlin Wall fell in late 1989."

The U.S. stockpile includes both active and inactive warheads.

In 2020, the Trump administration informed the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) that it would not be disclosing the size of the U.S. nuclear stockpile for the second time in a row. The FAS had submitted a request for the U.S government to disclose the size of the U.S. nuclear stockpile.

When the U.S. last disclosed the size of the nuclear stockpile in 2018, the size had been reported as 3,822 warheads in 2017.

Hans Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project at FAS, told The Associated Press that this decision by the Biden administration was a return to "transparency."

According to Kristensen, disclosing the size of its nuclear arsenal will help U.S. diplomats in negotiating arms control negotiations at next year's Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty conference.