What is the Doomsday Clock?
How close are we to destroying the planet? Scientists are telling the world one tick at a time. 🕚
The manmade end of humanity
Since 1947, the Doomsday Clock has been a visual metaphor indicating how close we are to the manmade end of humanity — represented by the clock’s midnight.
Rachel Bronson, the Executive Director of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, explains, “The clock is a metaphor for how close we are from destroying the planet. It is a summary view of leading experts deeply engaged in the existential challenges of our time.”
The clock has been moved 24 times already The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists originally set the clock at 7 minutes to midnight. It’s been moved 24 times based on threats to humanity like nuclear proliferation and climate change.
In 2007, Kennette Benedict, who was the Executive Director of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists at the time, revealed, “The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists is moving the minute hand of the Doomsday clock two minutes closer to midnight. It is now five minutes to midnight. This change reflects global failures to solve the problems solved by nuclear weapons and by climate change.”
It currently stands at 100 seconds to midnight the closest it’s ever been In 2020, Jerry Brown, a member of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, has shown extreme concern about the issue. He has questioned, “How else can we wake up the Democrats, the Republicans, the Independents, the millionaires, the billionaires, the media owners who carry on their lives as though they're on the Titanic about ready to hit an iceberg and they're not worried?”
Furthermore, Ban Ki-moon, the Former U.N. Secretary General, declared, “The United States must, somehow, begin to demonstrate global leadership. At the federal level too. Without it, we cannot hope to meet the targets that will keep global warming to manageable levels.”
A call to action While it’s ultimately just a symbol it serves as a stark warning and a call to action to ensure survival of the human race.
“If governments are not acting to protect you as they should, you need to take the lead. You need to demand action. It is not yet midnight, and we have moved back from the brink in the past. Whether we do so in the future, may be in your hands,” Lawrence Krauss, from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, informed the public.