Policy Briefs Books Journals

Cooperative Security, Arms Control and Disarmament Policy Brief  No.187 - March, 2024 • By Wren Green

Policy Brief No.187: Nuclear War Impacts on Distant, Non-Combatant Countries

Image: Ed Goodacre/Shutterstock.com

This Policy Brief examines the rarely-discussed topic of how nuclear war might impact non-combatant countries that are far from likely conflict zones, in particular the likely impacts of nuclear war on New Zealand. Rather than the catastrophic, immediate consequences of exploding warheads, distant non-combatants would face a cascade of economic social, and environmental disruptions which would be pervasive, complex, long-term, highly disruptive and would test the very fabric of their existence. Some of the identified vulnerabilities could be reduced beforehand and such actions could also make it easier for the country to recover from more likely global disruptions. Identifying and reducing key vulnerabilities increases resilience and would help recovery from global shocks including nuclear war.

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