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     Scottish CND      Magazine

THE RISING COST OF TRIDENT

Field Marshall Lord Carver has continued to press for nuclear disarmament in the House of Lords. He recently managed to force out of the government the fact that £940 million is being spent on Trident this year. Lord Gilbert the Defence Minister said on 9th December:

the estimated cost of maintaining the capability to design, produce, maintain the safety of, move and dispose of nuclear weapons in the United Kingdom is around £410 million in the current financial year .... The cost of providing, operating, maintaining and disposing of the Royal Navyís ballistic missile submarine fleet and its missiles is estimated to be some £530 million in the current financial year.

nuclear weapons £410 million
ballistic missile submarines £530 million

TOTAL (1/4/97 - 31/3/98) £940 million

But this is still not the complete answer. There are other costs. The hunter killer submarines at Faslane and Devonport, the helicopters at Prestwick and the Nimrods at Kinloss all have protection of Trident as their primary role. The first task of the Navyís Command bunker at Northwood and some communications facilities is control of Trident.

Taking all the other elements into account we get CNDís estimate that Trident is costing the taxpayer about £1,500 million every year.

Scottish CND      Magazine