According to scientists at the University of Chicago, who publish the journal Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, the risk of a nuclear catastrophe in 2022 has reached an all-time high. His project, the Doomsday Clock, showed an increase in the likelihood of a global catastrophe for the first time in three years.
The hands of the “clock”, announced in the Bulletin of Nuclear Research, have moved forward by 10 seconds and now show 90 seconds before midnight. This is the lowest point before the conditional doomsday since their launch.
The project was started in 1947 by American scientists who had participated in the creation of the first atomic bomb. Since then, its authors annually assess the degree of risk of impending nuclear war and other disasters. Depending on whether the risk of disaster has increased or decreased, they turn the hands of the clock forward or backward. As a rule, Nobel laureates participate in decision-making.
In total, the Arrows have been moved 24 times since their inception, writes the American Forbes. The clocks moved closer to midnight almost every time, except in the period from 2010 to 2012, when they went back a short time.
By determining the position of the hands of the “doomsday clock,” scientists take into account political tensions, risks associated with weapons, technology, and pandemics. In 2017, the authors of the project also began to assess the risks Climate change. Since then, this topic has become an important factor in disaster risk analysis.
The clock ticked for the last time in 2020. They were then moved from 120 seconds past midnight to 100 seconds. The clock remained at this mark through the end of 2020 and 2021.
The furthest point from nuclear midnight was in 1991, when the Treaty on the Reduction of Strategic Offensive Arms was signed between the USSR and the USA. Then he showed 23:43, Interfax notes.