The Doomsday clock has moved 10 seconds closer to midnight, currently at 90 seconds to midnight, the closest it has ever been to midnight.
Image credit: Sky News, 2023
The Doomsday Clock was designed in 1947 to warn the public about how close we are to destroying our world with dangerous technologies, such as nuclear weapons. It is a metaphor and a reminder of the dangers that we must address. When the clock was created in 1947, the greatest danger to humanity was that of nuclear weapons. In 2007 climate change was added to a factor to be considered when looking at the clock.
Scientists and experts with knowledge of nuclear technology and climate science decide on what time the clock should be at and provide expert advice to governments and international agencies.
The clock has been moved 10 seconds closer to midnight due to the ongoing war in Ukraine and we are currently, according to the Doomsday Clock, the closest to a global catastrophe we have ever been (Source: Bulletin.org, 2023).
The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists said that Russia’s threat to use nuclear weapons and the possibility that the conflict could spin out of control contributes to the time of the clock, along with China’s expansion of its nuclear weapons, North Korea’s nuclear weapons testing, India’s developing arsenal, and the climate crisis (Source: Sky News, 2023).
The clock is a warning, and the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists are encouraging governments to turn back the clock.