In the ‘2020 Doomsday Clock Statement’ the Doomsday Clock has been moved to 100 seconds to midnight, less than 2 minutes to midnight. This means that immediate action is required. The press release states three key issues that have created the situation, alongside three actions that can be taken to reverse the situation and turn back the hands of the Clock
The severeity of the situation means that immediate action is clearly required. An informed public can form a grass roots movement that can place pressure onto political leaders to implement these changes. As outlined below, online disinformation campaigns mean that the public is not properly informed and is not equipped to act properly.
The design of the Doomsday Clock is to warn the public about how close we are to destroying our world with dangerous technologies of our own making. It is determined by scientists and other experts with deep knowledge of nuclear technology.
It is a metaphor for the perils we must address if we are to survive on the planet. The Doomsday Clock was created in 1947. At that time the greatest danger to humanity came from nuclear weapons.
The full press release is available here:
1. Nuclear Weapons
Issue: The proliferation of nuclear weapons and the lowered barriers to nuclear war. There are contributing political factors, including the nuclear programs in Iran and North Korea, as well as the loss of controls between the United States and Russia.
Action: The United States and other signatories of the Iran nuclear deal need to work together to restrain nuclear proliferation in the Middle East. Through a return to the original nuclear agreement or via negotiation of a new and broader accord.
2. Climate Change
Issue: Climate change is clearly disrupting Earth’s climate. The result has been one of the warmest years on record, including extensive wildfires and quicker-than-expected melting of glacial ice.
Action: Countries of the world need to rededicate themselves to the temperature goals of the Paris climate agreement.
3. Online Disinformation
Issue: The proliferation of nuclear weapons and climate change are compounded by information warfare. The online disinformation undercuts society’s ability to respond.
Action: Governments and individuals one down the online disinformation that is a threat to public opinion. the misuse of science needs to be discouraged and penalized where necessary.