Nuclear security is the set of procedures, practices or other measures used to manage risks from nuclear weapons and other nuclear materials.
80,000 Hours rates nuclear security a "second-highest priority area": an unusually pressing global problem ranked slightly below their four highest priority areas.
In The Precipice: Existential Risk and the Future of Humanity, Toby Ord offers several policy and research recommendations for handling risks from nuclear weapons:
- Restart the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF).
- Take US ICBMs off hair-trigger alert (officially called Launch on Warning).
- Increase the capacity of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to verify nations are complying with safeguards agreements.
- Work on resolving the key uncertainties in nuclear winter modeling.
- Characterize the remaining uncertainties then use Monte Carlo techniques to show the distribution of outcome possibilities, with a special focus on the worst-case possibilities compatible with our current understanding.
- Investigate which parts of the world appear most robust to the effects of nuclear winter and how likely civilization is to continue there.