The Doomsday Clock Is Now Just Two Minutes to Midnight
The clock is now two minutes to midnight based on the predictions of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, a non-profit organization that informs the public about threats to its survival due to nuclear threats, emerging technologies and climate change.
"This is the closest the Clock has ever been to Doomsday, and as close as it was in 1953, at the height of the Cold War," the group said.
Last year, the Clock ticked forward an ominous two and a half minutes to midnight mostly thanks to President Donald Trump. The nuclear danger of a Trump presidency, combined with his and his administration's climate denialism, heighten the risk of a global catastrophe, the group warned then.
As for this year, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists explained that the clock moved forward another 30 seconds because "in 2017, world leaders failed to respond effectively to the looming threats of nuclear war and climate change, making the world security situation more dangerous than it was a year ago—and as dangerous as it has been since World War II."
"The greatest risks last year arose in the nuclear realm. North Korea's nuclear weapons program appeared to make remarkable progress in 2017, increasing risks for itself, other countries in the region, and the United States," the group continued. "Hyperbolic rhetoric and provocative actions on both sides have increased the possibility of nuclear war by accident or miscalculation."
"On the climate change front, the danger may seem less immediate, but avoiding catastrophic temperature increases in the long run require urgent attention now. The nations of the world will have to significantly decrease their greenhouse gas emissions to keep climate risks manageable, and so far, the global response has fallen far short of meeting this challenge," the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists said.
Rachel Bronson, president of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, called on immediate global action to rewind the clock.
"It is urgent that, collectively, we put in the work necessary to produce a 2019 Clock statement that rewinds the Doomsday Clock," Bronson said. "Get engaged, get involved, and help create that future. The time is now."
What's more, the accounting firm predicts that another 21 million electric cars will be on the road globally over the next decade due to growing market demand for clean transportation, government subsidies, as well as bans on fossil fuel cars.
Sunoco's controversial Mariner East pipeline project in Pennsylvania is beginning 2019 on unstable ground, literally. A sinkhole opened in the suburban development of Lisa Drive in Chester County Sunday, exposing the old Mariner East 1 pipeline built in the 1930s.
Greenland is melting about four times faster than it was in 2003, a new study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found, a discovery with frightening implications for the pace and extent of future sea level rise.
"We're going to see faster and faster sea level rise for the foreseeable future," study lead author and Ohio State University geodynamics professor Dr. Michael Bevis said in a press release. "Once you hit that tipping point, the only question is: How severe does it get?"
By Marlene Cimons
Most Europeans know the great tit as an adorable, likeable yellow-and-black songbird that shows up to their feeders in the winter. But there may be one thing they don't know. That cute, fluffy bird can be a relentless killer.
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By Patrick Rogers
If you have ever considered making the switch to an environmentally friendly electric vehicle, don't drag your feet. Though EV prices are falling, and states are unveiling more and more public charging stations and plug-in-ready parking spots, the federal government is doing everything it can to slam the brakes on our progress away from gas-burning internal combustion engines. President Trump, likely pressured by his allies in the fossil fuel industry, has threatened to end the federal tax credits that have already helped put hundreds of thousands of EVs on the road—a move bound to harm not only our environment but our economy, too. After all, the manufacturing and sale of EVs, hybrids, and plug-in hybrids supported 197,000 jobs in 2017, according to the most recent U.S. Energy and Employment Report.
This week, people across the country are joining environmental leaders to speak out against the nomination of former coal lobbyist Andrew Wheeler to lead the the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). As Scott Pruitt's hand-picked successor, Wheeler has continued to put polluters over people, most recently by using the last of his agency's funding before it expired in the government shutdown to announce plans to allow power plants to spew toxic mercury and other hazardous pollution into the air.