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The Doomsday Clock has been ticking for 76 years. But it’s no ordinary watch.
It tries to gauge how close humanity is to destroying the world.
Tuesday the clock was set for 90 Seconds to midnight — according to the bulletin, the closest time ever. Atomic scientist who created the clock in 1947. Midnight represents the moment when the earth becomes uninhabitable for mankind. From 2020 to 2022, clocks were set to 100 seconds until midnight.
According to Bulletin, the watch isn’t designed to definitively measure existential threats, but to spark conversations about tough scientific topics like climate change.
The decision to put the clock forward 10 seconds this year was largely due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the growing risk of nuclear escalation, Bretin said in a news release. The ongoing threat posed by the climate crisis, and the breakdown of the norms and institutions needed to mitigate the risks associated with biological threats like Covid-19, have also played a role.
“We live in a time of unprecedented peril, and the Doomsday Clock reflects that reality.” mentioned in the release. “It is not a decision our experts take lightly. The US government, its NATO allies and Ukraine have numerous channels for dialogue. I highly recommend that you explore them all to the fullest.”
The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists was founded by A group of atomic scientists who worked on the Manhattan Project, the codename for the development of the atomic bomb during World War II.
The organization was originally conceived to measure nuclear threats, but in 2007 Bulletin decided to include climate change in its calculations.
Over the past three-quarters of a century, clock time has shifted according to how close scientists believe humanity is to total destruction. Some years the time changes, some years it stays the same.
The Doomsday Clock is set annually by experts from Bulletin’s Science and Security Board in consultation with a sponsoring committee that includes 11 Nobel Prize winners.
While the clock serves as an effective wake-up call to remind people of the cascading crisis facing our planet, some question the usefulness of the 75-year-old clock.
Michael E. Mann, Distinguished Dean of the University of Pennsylvania Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, told CNN in 2022: different timescales. Still, he added, it “continues to be an important rhetorical device year after year as a reminder of the tenuousness of our present existence on this planet.”
Every model has its limits, Erin Macdonald, an analyst with the Coalition of Concerned Scientists’ Global Security Program, told CNN in 2022 that the bulletin was a way to raise public awareness about existential threats and action needed. He added that he makes thoughtful decisions each year about how to draw.
“I wish we could go back to talking minutes to midnight instead of seconds, but unfortunately that no longer reflects reality,” she said.
The clock never struck midnight. Bronson hopes that won’t be the case.
“When the clock strikes midnight, it means there has been some kind of nuclear war or catastrophic climate change that has wiped out humanity,” she said. I never wanted to get there.
Time on the clock is not meant to measure threats, but to spark conversations and promote public engagement in scientific topics such as climate change and nuclear disarmament.
If the clock can do it, Bronson considers it a success.
When the new time is set on the clock, people listen, she said. Prime Minister Boris Johnson cited the Doomsday Clock when talking about the climate crisis facing the world, Bronson noted.
Bronson said he hopes people will debate whether they agree with Bulletin’s decision and have a fruitful discussion about what the drivers of change are.
During the move It is still possible to turn back the clock with bold and concrete actions.hands actually moved Farthest from midnight – a whopping 17 minutes before the hour – 1991 The administration of President George HW Bush signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty with the Soviet Union. In 2016, the clock was three minutes past midnight as a result of the Iran nuclear deal and the Paris Agreement.
“Bulletin believes that humans created these threats, so we can reduce them,” Bronson said. , requires global engagement at all levels of society.”
Don’t underestimate the power of talking to your peers about these important issues, said Bronson.
“You may not feel it because you’re not doing anything, but we know that public engagement (a) drives leaders to take action,” she said.
to have a positive impact on Climate change, look at your daily habits and see if there are small changes you can make to your life, like how often you walk rather than drive or how your house is heated.
Eating seasonally and locally, reducing food waste and recycling properly are other ways to reduce or address the impacts of the climate crisis.