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    Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) participates in a four-day Global Congress on Chemical Security and Emerging Threats Conference in Lyon, France Oct. 28-31.

    Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) participates in a four-day Global Congress on Chemical Security and Emerging Threats Conference

    Photo By Andrea Chaney | Air Force Maj. Emily Pollard (right) of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency recently...... read more read more



    Story by Johnny Michael 

    Defense Threat Reduction Agency

    LYON, France—Members of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) recently participated in a four-day Global Congress on Chemical Security and Emerging Threats conference in Lyon, France Oct. 28-31. The conference, co-organized between U.S. Department of Homeland Security, International Police, U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation, and DTRA, brings together experts to discuss and address the increasing threat of chemical and explosive terrorism to global peace and security.

    When asked on the importance of establishing a chemical security global community, Dr. Robert Pope, Director of the Cooperative Threat Reduction Program stated, “as we see the global norms eroding against the use of chemical weapons over the past few years with use by state actors and non-state actors, it’s more important than ever to bring industry, academia, the government together with international organizations to all work together on this problem because everyone owns part of the solution and only by working together are we going to be able to tackle this threat.” The idea of total ownership across the private and public sectors was a key theme echoed throughout the 2nd Annual Congress when referring to global chemical security.

    When referencing the need for ownership across industry, academia, and government, DTRA CTR plays a key role in this solution through the Chemical Security and Elimination (CSE) Program. CSE provides support to partner nations by working with their government agencies, international organizations, Department of Defense Combatant Commanders, and the United States Government interagency to prevent non-state actors from acquiring and using toxic industrial chemicals or precursors as improvised Chemical Weapons (CW), mitigate the proliferation risk of CW materials and expertise, secure and eliminate CW stockpiles, chemical agent research, and production infrastructure. CSE implements its chemical security mission by developing training and outreach programs, regulatory frameworks, enforcement mechanisms, and other tools to impact high threat areas.

    As DTRA focuses on defeating the threat network, Dr. Pope highlighted the ever evolving threat from violent extremists organizations and their ability to connect determined enemies with the knowledge and materials needed to weaponize commercial chemicals.

    When speaking on how emerging technologies could impact the way forward for chemical security, Maj. Emily Pollard, (International Program Manager/CSE) specified, “Today, it is increasingly difficult to understand and predict how threats and threat networks will evolve. For example, technological developments such as Unmanned Arial Systems continue to move swiftly, as will the likelihood that VEO’s will try to exploit these technologies for hostile purposes. We must work with our partners to identify opportunities to bring integrated cross-domain effects against anticipated threats that emerging technologies may bring. To effectively counter these dispersed, sophisticated threats, we need a broad network of our own — and international partners are a key part of that.”

    During the day one closing remarks, Dr. Pope challenged the crowd by saying, “I encourage you to build upon the relationships you have established or enhanced during this congress. The personal connections that you make with your counterparts and your understanding of the value and necessity of bilateral and multilateral coordination will go far to improving our collective preparation for potential chemical security events.”

    From rapidly responding to the Japanese Tsunami in 2011 during Operation Tomodachi to the safe elimination of Syrian chemical weapons aboard the Cape Ray, DTRA has seen the necessity for multilateral coordination during disastrous events.



    Date Taken: 11.05.2019
    Date Posted: 11.06.2019 09:38
    Story ID: 350582
    Location: FORT BELVOIR, VA, US 

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