Reporting System

Doomsday Clock Moves One Minute Closer to Midnight

The doomsday clock is now shown to be 5 minutes from a global apocalypse. (AP)

The Doomsday Clock moved one minute closer to midnight after scientists agreed that a global cataclysm was more likely today. The clock, which last moved in January 2010, is a universally recognized indicator of the world’s vulnerability to catastrophe from nuclear weapons, climate change and emerging technologies. The clock now shows five minutes to midnight, said the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists in Washington.  The clock had been set at six minutes to midnight for the past two years. It was previously set at five minutes to midnight from 2007-2010. Scientists said in a statement that two years ago, there was reason for optimism ‘that world leaders might address the truly global threats we face. In many cases, that trend has not continued. The last change pushed the clock’s hands back one minute – from five to six.

However, in 2011, it would have been a surprise if the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists (BAS), the panel behind the decision, said the potential for nuclear meltdown was less likely.

The most significant contributing factors to the decision were the narrowly averted nuclear disaster at the Fukushima plant in Japan which was caused by the earthquake and tsunami on March 11. There were also concerns about the danger from Iran which has begun to enrich uranium at a secret underground site – a move which could be a step towards developing a nuclear bomb. Further cause to move the clock closer to midnight came from North Korea where the death of Kim Jong Il saw his young and untested son Kim Jong Un put in control of a country widely believed to have full nuclear capabilities.

Today’s announcement by the BAS followed a year of deliberations by the group of experts who determine the risk.

…(Daily Mail)


January 11, 2012 - Posted by | War | , , , , , , , ,

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