Because of the “extraordinary danger of the current moment,” the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists today moved the hand of the iconic Doomsday Clock to 2 MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT. The last time the Clock was this close to midnight was in 1953.

Read the Science and Security Board’s 2018 Doomsday Clock Statement.
Read the press release.
Read our FAQ on the Doomsday Clock.
See the Clock Timeline
Watch the videotaped Doomsday Clock Announcement.
See the video presentation “The Doomsday Clock: A brief history.”

President and CEO Rachel Bronson and four members of the Bulletin’s leadership participated in a media event at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. earlier today to answer questions about the board’s decision.

As she announced the 2018 time, Bronson observed that the time on the Doomsday Clock represents the Bulletin’s answer to two important questions: Is the future of civilization safer or at greater risk than it was last year, and is the future of civilization safer or at greater risk compared to the more than seven decades that we’ve been asking this question?”

In the 2018 Doomsday Clock Statement, the Bulletin’s Science and Security Boardresponds by declaring an “untenable nuclear threat,” as concerns deepen that nuclear weapons may be used, either intentionally or unintentionally. North Korea’s progress on its nuclear weapons program and a range of US-Russian military entanglements, along with the simultaneous upgrading of global nuclear arsenals and weakening of arms control negotiations, are among the most immediate worries.

On the climate change front, the statement notes that while the danger may seem less immediate, “Global carbon dioxide emissions have not yet shown the beginnings of the sustained decline towards zero that must occur…” Extreme heatwaves, devastating wildfires, and a dwindling winter icecap in the Arctic are just a few indicators of worsening climate change and a year of exceptional warming, and the board points to a global response that has fallen far short.

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists invites you to read the 2018 Doomsday Clock Statement in full and to commit to working with us to reverse the increasing threats to humanity’s present and future. As the statement concludes: “Leaders react when citizens insist they do so…They can insist on facts, and discount nonsense. They can demand action to reduce the existential threat of nuclear war and unchecked climate change. They can seize the opportunity to make a safer and saner world.

“They can #rewindtheDoomsdayClock.”

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