Apex Gold Scenario-Based Policy Discussion
On January 27-28, 2016, the U.S. Department of Energy and the Kingdom of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs hosted a scenario-based policy discussion entitled Apex Gold, the first ever minister-level exercise to identify national and international actions to address a nuclear crisis. The SBPD brought together ministers and other senior delegates from 37 nations, along with representatives from the International Atomic Energy Agency, the European Union, and the United Nations, to practice their ability to respond effectively to an emerging nuclear security threat.
During the discussion, the ministers were presented with a hypothetical nuclear terrorism scenario and then worked together to determine how each of their nations might respond at each step of the situation. The participants also toured Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to better understand some of the technical tools available for detecting and analyzing nuclear material and making decisions in the event of a nuclear terrorism crisis.
The primary objective of Apex Gold was to prepare ministers to advise their heads of government during a nuclear security crisis or emergency. Additionally, the exercise laid important groundwork for the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit. At the Summit, national leaders will also be presented with a hypothetical scenario involving a nuclear security threat.