Happy Friday, the ‘Doomsday Clock’ is now at 100 seconds to midnight, which is about as good as it sounds.
If you weren’t already aware, we have this thing called a ‘Doomsday Clock’, which is an international indicator of exactly how close we are to fucking up our entire existence.
The clock was introduced in 1947 when atomic weapons were the biggest threat to mankind as a whole. But somehow, in 2020 we’ve managed to up the ante and we’re closer to midnight than ever before.
The clock was moved forward 20 seconds on Thursday as a result of the impending threat of climate change and the possibility of a nuclear war, which are both… not good. It’s now sitting at a very terrifying 100 seconds to midnight.
According to the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists (the people behind the clock), both nuclear warfare and climate change are being fuelled by “cyber-enabled disinformation”, which is a fancy way of saying fake news. The hands are closer to midnight than they were at the height of the Cold War, so uhhh maybe we should put down the nukes and start doing something about the planet.
The hands of the clock have been reset 24 times since the 1947, with climate change first being considered a threat to humanity in 2007.
Most recently, the clock was moved to two-minutes to midnight back in 2018 when the threat of North Korea’s nuclear weapons became more apparent.
“Political conflicts regarding nuclear programs in Iran and North Korea remain unresolved and are, if anything, worsening,” the bulletin said. “U.S.-Russia cooperation on arms control and disarmament is all but nonexistent.”
The bulletin also discussed climate change, citing the lack of political leadership (*cough* Scott Morrison *cough*) as a reason for the move forward.
“This limited political response came during a year when the effects of manmade climate change were manifested by one of the warmest years on record, extensive wildfires, and quicker-than-expected melting of glacial ice.”
But if all of this has you binge-watching Doomsday Preppers, don’t fret because the bulletin also said there’s “no reason the Doomsday Clock cannot move away from midnight” if we cool it with the “unnecessary” arms race and work towards the Paris climate agreement targets.
So basically, we’re not totally fucked yet. But if we want to move away from midnight (and we do), we need to prioritise our climate change efforts and stop threatening to nuke everybody.Image: AAP Images / Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists