By: Wolf von Baumgart, Staff Writer
The Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (BAS) has announced its decision to move its Doomsday Clock forward to two and one half minutes to Midnight, last Friday at 10 AM (EST).
Speaking at the National Press Club in Washington DC, BAS Executive Director and Publisher, Dr. Rachel Bronson announced that ” This year’s Clock deliberations felt more urgent than usual. On the big topics that concern the board, world leaders made too little progress in the face of continuing turbulence. In addition to the existential threats posed by nuclear weapons and climate change, new global realities emerged, as trusted sources of information came under attack, fake news was on the rise, and words were used in cavalier and often reckless ways. “
The eighteen-page companion report, “It is two and a half minutes to midnight” (edited by John Mecklin) cited a wide array of factors in the board’s decision to reset the clock forward thirty seconds, including increased Russian-American tensions (with concomitant strategic nuclear weapons modernization), greater international tensions, accelerated North Korean nuclear weapons developments, stresses on the US-Iranian Nuclear Agreement, major climate change concerns, various emerging technologies and increased cyber warfare threats.
The video of the event is posted at: http://clock.thebulletin.org/
The Doomsday Clock was originally fashioned as a broad index of annual international existential threat assessment in 1947. The 2017 announcement also marked the clock’s 70th anniversary.
The entire 2017 Doomsday Clock report is available here.