Leading scientists and security experts have moved forward with ” The Doomsday Clock,” which has tracked the probability of humanity’s extinction for 75 years, to just 90 seconds to midnight, which indicates an increased risk to humanity’s survival due to the nuclear shadow over the Ukraine conflict and the growing climate crisis.
In a statement, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists said they moved the clocks forward 10 seconds this year “due in large part, but not exclusively, to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the increased risk of nuclear escalation.”
“Russia’s thinly veiled threats to use nuclear weapons remind the world that escalation of the conflict, by accident, intent or miscalculation, is a terrible risk,” it said. “The possibility that the conflict could get out of anyone’s control remains high.”
The Bulletin said the new clock time “was also influenced by the continuing threats posed by the climate crisis and the collapse of global norms and institutions needed to mitigate the risks associated with advancing technologies and biological threats such as Covid -19”.
“We live in a time of unprecedented danger, and Doomsday Clock reflects that reality,” said Rachel Bronson, president and CEO of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. “90 seconds to midnight is the closest the clock has been set to midnight, and it’s a decision our experts don’t take lightly.”
“The US government, its NATO allies and Ukraine have a multitude of channels for dialogue,” he said. “We urge leaders to explore all of them to their fullest capacity to turn back the clock.”
What is the Doomsday Clock
The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists created in 1947 what is known as the Clock of the Apocalypse or Clock of the End of the World (Doomsday Clock), which tries to remind humanity of the fragility and vulnerability with which we can be destroyed.
The symbolic hands of this clock are moving, depending on the situation of humanity, approaching midnight, which is the hour that represents the “total and catastrophic destruction” of the world and of our species.
This watch is used as a metaphor, but also as an alert of how vulnerable humanity is. In fact, the needle is always within minutes of midnight, since the threat to our species continues due to wars or climate change, among other things.
Therefore, this clock, which is not real, has the objective of opening the debate on the problems that affect our world and survival, promoting policies and raising awareness to reduce the threats of extinction.
How has the Doomsday Clock moved since 1947?
- 1947-1948: 7 minutes
- 1949-1952: 3 minutes
- 1953-1959: 2 minutes
- 1960-1962: 7 minutes
- 1963-1967: 12 minutes
- 1968: 7 minutes
- 1969-1971: 10 minutes
- 1972-1973: 12 minutes
- 1974-1979: 9 minutes
- 1980: 7 minutes
- 1981-1983: 4 minutes
- 1984-1987: 3 minutes
- 1988-1989: 6 minutes
- 1990: 10 minutes
- 1991-1994: 17 minutes
- 1995-1997: 14 minutes
- 1998-2001: 9 minutes
- 2002-2006: 7 minutes
- 2007-2009: 5 minutes
- 2010-2011: 6 minutes
- 2012-2014: 5 minutes
- 2015-2016: 3 minutes
- 2017: 2.5 minutes
- 2018: 2 minutes
- 2019: 2 minutes
- 2020: 100 seconds
- 2023: 90 seconds
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