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Scientific Advisory Group Meetings

6 November 2023

The Chairs reported that both SAG reports have been submitted to UNODA for editing and translation. SAG members finalised arrangements and their plans for 2MSP. This includes participation in the thematic discussions on the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons; presentations by the Co-Chairs of its reports to States Parties; a planned meeting with researchers; and, a meeting with ICAN members and other NGOs. Members will also participate in State and NGO-arranged side-events.

9 October 2023

Members continued to finalise the reports to be presented at the 2MSP. On the establishment of the broader network of scientific and technical experts it was decided that a section in the Activity Report will include a description of the process so far undertaken including drafting and discussions on its potential terms of reference, mission, composition, purpose, principles of management and indicative activities and that SAG is currently considering various approached to establish the Network through a phased process. As many members will be in New York, it was decided that the SAG will hold two meetings during the 2MSP. Melissa Parke, the new Executive Director of ICAN and Alicia Sanders-Zakre, the Policy and Research Coordinator of ICAN, briefed the Group on what they saw as the priorities and possible outcomes of 2MSP.

4 September 2023

Members of the SAG continued their work on their draft report chapters to be submitted to States Parties at the 2MSP. A draft annual activity report was also distributed for discussion. On the ‘Network of scientific and technical institutions and experts’ to support the goals of the Treaty, its proposed purpose, composition and management as well as its indicative activities have been outlined for further discussion and refinement. The Group also took note of a number of research requests stemming from the informal working groups (including Article 4 informal working group on the elimination of nuclear weapons) and undertook to integrate these into its planned activities in 2024.

4 August 2023

The Scientific Advisory Group met on 4 August 2023 in Vienna, Austria for its first in-person meeting of the year. Members heard and discussed draft chapters of their report which will be submitted to States Parties at the 2MSP. Chapters include an analysis of the status of nuclear weapons and the key issues being debated in other disarmament and non-proliferation fora; nuclear weapon risks; victim assistance; environmental remediation; and, other matters relating to nuclear disarmament. In addition, SAG members reviewed a proposed Mission Statement and Terms of Reference for the intended ‘Network of scientific and technical institutions and experts’ to support the goals of the Treaty. Both of these will continue to be discussed and finalised during the SAG’s meeting in September and October prior to submission to the secretariat of the 2MSP.

3 July 2023

The Scientific Advisory Group met on 3 July 2023 to continue its work on identifying and engaging scientific and technical institutions in States Parties and more broadly to establish a network of experts to support the goals of the Treaty. Following a presentation on the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons testing with particular reference to radioactive fallout / gamma radiation and its long-term effects on food sources, the environment and on people in, for example, the Marshall Islands and elsewhere, the Group discussed the legal and policy implications for States Parties to the TPNW. Sub-groups reported back on progress made in their drafting of a report on the status and developments regarding nuclear weapons; nuclear weapon risks; the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons; and, issues relating to nuclear disarmament. Plans were also made for the SAG’s first in-person meeting, which will be held in Vienna on 4 August 2023.

5 June 2023

The Scientific Advisory Group met on 5 June, 2023 to discuss its work on identifying and engaging scientific and technical institutions in States Parties and more broadly to establish a network of experts to support the goals of the Treaty. Debates centered around a number of issues, including developing criteria for membership, the purpose of the network and the definition to be used for a scientific and technical institution and expert. Plans and methods for drafting the SAG report to 2MSP were also discussed.

1 May 2023

On 1 May 2023, the Scientific Advisory Group held its third meeting online. SAG members first provided briefings on (a) progress of the Article 4 Informal Working Group and (b) status of nuclear weapons risks. SAG members then discussed the work of its own working groups. SAG Working Group 1 will organise intersessional work thematically (around nuclear weapon status, risks, humanitarian consequences, and disarmament) and the drafting of a report to be delivered to the 2MSP. SAG Working Group 2 is examining the creation of a network of experts to support the goals of the TPNW and capacity-building in States Parties.

3 April 2023

The Scientific Advisory Group held its second meeting on 3 April 2023. Members of the Group discussed internal organisational issues, including on the Group’s mandate, working plans and reporting requirements. They also discussed their involvement in the work of some of the Treaty’s working groups. The Group further established two informal working groups of the SAG: one on nuclear weapons —nuclear weapons status; nuclear weapon risks; the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons; nuclear disarmament and related issues ; and a second one on scientific network building—identify and engage scientific and technical institutions in States Parties and more broadly to establish a network of experts to support the goals of the Treaty. 

1 March 2023

The first meeting of the Scientific Advisory Group took place on 1 March 2023. At the meeting, the Group elected Ms. Patricia Lewis and Mr. Zia Mian as co-chairs. Following the election, the Group heard a briefing from the Secretariat on its mandate, before engaging in a discussion on decisions related to the effective functioning of the Group as well as its programme of work for 2023.