A bipartisan US bill called “The Block Nuclear Launch by Autonomous Artificial Intelligence Act” has been introduced by Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Reps. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.), Don Beyer (D-Va.), and Ken Buck (R-Colo.) The bill aims to prevent AI from launching nuclear weapons.
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In the name of “protecting future generations from potentially devastating consequences,” a bipartisan group of U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday introduced legislation meant to prevent artificial intelligence from launching nuclear weapons without meaningful human control.
The Block Nuclear Launch by Autonomous Artificial Intelligence Act—introduced by Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Reps. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.), Don Beyer (D-Va.), and Ken Buck (R-Colo.)—asserts that “any decision to launch a nuclear weapon should not be made” by AI.
The proposed legislation acknowledges that the Pentagon’s 2022 Nuclear Posture Review states that current U.S. policy is to “maintain a human ‘in the loop’ for all actions critical to informing and executing decisions by the president to initiate and terminate nuclear weapon employment.”
The bill would codify that policy so that no federal funds could be used “to launch a nuclear weapon [or] select or engage targets for the purposes of launching” nukes.
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“As we live in an increasingly digital age, we need to ensure that humans hold the power alone to command, control, and launch nuclear weapons—not robots,” Markey asserted in a statement. “We need to keep humans in the loop on making life-or-death decisions to use deadly force, especially for our most dangerous weapons.”
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