After coming perilously close to losing all constraints on the world’s two largest nuclear arsenals, the New START treaty was extended through 2026. But as the United States and Russia modernize their arsenals, the threat of a new nuclear arms race underscores the need for continued cooperation.
Infographics on Nuclear Weapons
At its peak, the United States had more than 31,000 nuclear weapons in its stockpile. Now, thanks to various arms control agreements and unilateral reductions, the United States has a total inventory of around 5,800 nuclear warheads.
As a part of the $1.5 trillion nuclear modernization plan, the Air Force plans to replace the land-based leg of the nuclear triad with a completely new ICBM, the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent. But do we actually need these ground-based missiles?
The United States is projected to spend $1.5 trillion (before inflation) to overhaul its nuclear arsenal by rebuilding each leg of the nuclear triad and its accompanying infrastructure. Here’s a breakdown of the costs of some of the biggest line items.
The U.S. nuclear arsenal comprises thousands of nuclear weapons and three methods of delivery, sometimes called “legs.”