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Uh Oh, ‘Doomsday Clock’ Is Closer to Midnight Than Ever Before

Uh Oh, ‘Doomsday Clock’ Is Closer to Midnight Than Ever Before

Well, it’s been nice while it lasted.

Scientists and security experts have set the Doomsday Clock at 90 seconds to midnight, deeming this the closest humanity has ever been to self-annihilation, and it’s all thanks to the nuclear shadow over the Ukraine conflict and the growing climate crisis.

“We are living in a time of unprecedented danger,” said Rachel Bronson, president and CEO of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, which oversees the Doomsday Clock. “Ninety seconds to midnight is the closest the clock has ever been set to midnight, and it’s a decision our experts do not take lightly.”

The clock, which is a metaphor for how close humanity is to self-annihilation, had been set at 100 seconds to midnight since January 2020. But this year, the hands of the clock have been moved forward by 10 seconds “due largely but not exclusively to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the increased risk of nuclear escalation,” according to members of the Bulletin.

“Russia’s thinly veiled threats to use nuclear weapons remind the world that escalation of the conflict — by accident, intention, or miscalculation — is a terrible risk,” they continued. “The possibility that the conflict could spin out of anyone’s control remains high.”

It’s not just the threat of nuclear war that’s got the scientists worried. The clock was also moved forward by the ongoing threats posed by the climate crisis, rapidly advancing technologies and biological threats such as Covid-19. You know, our new normal.

But let’s not worry just yet. There’s still time to make a change, and as the clock’s creators say, “We urge leaders to explore all of them to their fullest ability to turn back the clock.” Let’s hope they listen, otherwise we should probably start preparing for one heck of a Doomsday party.

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