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Doomsday Clock moved to just 2 minutes to 'apocalypse'

Doomsday Clock Apocalypse 2 minutes Nuclear War

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#1
Time_Traveller

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25 January 2018

 

Growing concerns about a possible nuclear war and other global threats have pushed forward the symbolic Doomsday Clock by 30 seconds - to just two minutes before midnight.

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (BAS) said it had acted because the world was becoming "more dangerous".

The clock, created by the journal in 1947, is a metaphor for how close the mankind is to destroying the Earth.

It is now the closest to the apocalypse it has been since 1953.

That was the year when the US and the Soviet Union tested hydrogen bombs.

Last year, the clock was also moved forward by 30 seconds.

 

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http://www.bbc.co.uk.../world-42823734


“One, remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Two, never give up work. Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it. Three, if you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is there and don't throw it away.”

 

Stephen Hawking


#2
Jakob

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It really seems like a mouthpeace for liberals to me.



#3
wjfox

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It really seems like a mouthpeace for liberals to me.

 

You think the current global situation is nothing to worry about?



#4
TranscendingGod

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I don't agree with this either. 


The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth.

#5
Raklian

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It definitely didn't help Trump boasted about having a bigger nuclear button.


What are you without the sum of your parts?

#6
Erowind

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It really seems like a mouthpeace for liberals to me.

 

You think the current global situation is nothing to worry about?

 

¿Haven't you heard Will, the magic of the free market will solve everything!¿



#7
_SputnicK_

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This clock assumes that we are only "two minutes" from a doomsday event, yet all it has cited to support this estimation is:

  • North Korea's nuclear arsenal, which has yet to materialize and can impact only a small portion of the US
  • Our current situation regarding climate change, which is not near as bad as some have claimed. There is no evidence to support it is even approaching doomsday level.

I see this as a protest of Donald Trump's recent policies more than a rational estimation of our current global threat.


"We are attempting to survive our time so we may live into yours." -Jimmy Carter, 1977

"In my mind and in my car, we can't rewind we've gone too far. Pictures came and broke your heart, put down the blame on VCR." -The Buggles, 1980


#8
Yuli Ban

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It makes sense when you stop seeing North Korea as the new USSR and start seeing them as the new Sarajevo. What the Doomsday Clock is warning us about is that it may be winter 1913.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#9
Jakob

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It really seems like a mouthpeace for liberals to me.

 

You think the current global situation is nothing to worry about?

 

Our God-Emperor will protect the good and righteous (those who voted for and supported Him) from the nuclear hellfire.



#10
Erowind

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It makes sense when you stop seeing North Korea as the new USSR and start seeing them as the new Sarajevo. What the Doomsday Clock is warning us about is that it may be winter 1913.

 

Would China actually go to war over the DPRK though, my guess is no.



#11
wjfox

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  • Our current situation regarding climate change, which is not near as bad as some have claimed. There is no evidence to support it is even approaching doomsday level.

 

As it stands, we are firmly on track for the worst case scenario, i.e. 4 or 5°C of warming later this century, which is basically the end of modern civilisation. Given the size and speed of emissions reductions that are needed, we have likely passed the point of no return now, and the window of opportunity has almost closed. CO2 emissions have begun rising again following what seemed to be a recent plateau, global average temperatures saw a huge jump between 2014-2016, the cost of climate and weather-related disasters is now the highest ever by far, sea levels are rising way faster than anyone predicted before, Arctic ice is in catastrophic decline, the oceans and coral reefs in particular are dying, megafires and droughts are spreading every year, rainfall and flooding continues to set new records, glaciers are vanishing at an astonishing speed which threatens many water supplies, forests are becoming carbon sources instead of carbon sinks, the list goes on and on. At the same time as all this is happening, we have a U.S. President who is the most viciously anti-environment leader of all time, with a cabinet stuffed full of the most greedy and evil climate deniers of any government in the world.

 

But yeah, everything's fine... nothing to worry about.

/s



#12
Jakob

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  • Our current situation regarding climate change, which is not near as bad as some have claimed. There is no evidence to support it is even approaching doomsday level.

 

As it stands, we are firmly on track for the worst case scenario, i.e. 4 or 5°C of warming later this century, which is basically the end of modern civilisation. Given the size and speed of emissions reductions that are needed, we have likely passed the point of no return now, and the window of opportunity has almost closed. CO2 emissions have begun rising again following what seemed to be a recent plateau, global average temperatures saw a huge jump between 2014-2016, the cost of climate and weather-related disasters is now the highest ever by far, sea levels are rising way faster than anyone predicted before, Arctic ice is in catastrophic decline, the oceans and coral reefs in particular are dying, megafires and droughts are spreading every year, rainfall and flooding continues to set new records, glaciers are vanishing at an astonishing speed which threatens many water supplies, forests are becoming carbon sources instead of carbon sinks, the list goes on and on. At the same time as all this is happening, we have a U.S. President who is the most viciously anti-environment leader of all time, with a cabinet stuffed full of the most greedy and evil climate deniers of any government in the world.

 

But yeah, everything's fine... nothing to worry about.

/s

 

Humanity will adapt and overcome even if there is such a great warming (which may not happen due to geoengineering). We have survived far more serious threats (e.g. Toba, Ice Age) with far less technology.



#13
Yuli Ban

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Humanity will adapt and overcome even if there is such a great warming (which may not happen due to geoengineering). We have survived far more serious threats (e.g. Toba, Ice Age) with far less technology.

Think about what you just said there, Jakob.

Humanity survived Toba, an ice age, and probably many other disasters we're aware of.
Human civilization, however, was never put under such stresses. Whenever it was tested in lesser ways, it tended to break down very quickly. The worst we experienced was a little "ice age" and a year without a summer, the former of which pushed humankind to the limit (our worst period as a species since the rise of civilization was between 1200 and 1400). Meanwhile, older civilizations collapsed and vanished due to climatic changes or abrupt disasters, and later ones have been put through the wringer and only survived due to a more globalized world. Imagine if the rest of the world can't come to the aid of a nation in the middle of total social meltdown because the same thing is happening everywhere. Civilization won't survive, even if humans do.

 

You know how I keep heralding AGI as our great (and only possible) savior? Because the key towards rebuilding (or building) anything is knowledge + capability + resources. Right know, knowledge is very fragile and there are no singular human beings who would know absolutely everything necessary to jumpstart a new neo-modern civilization in the immediate aftermath of a disaster. And even if there were, the human population would be too greatly reduced to make it feasible. Most humans alive after a nuclear war, for example, would be impoverished farmers in the global South, so we'd be living in a world where nations like Peru, Zimbabwe, and New Zealand are global superpowers. Hence why I go all in on machine lords and supercapable technotarians, independent of humans. When we have that, we can start to ease our worries about surviving existential threats that even destroy civilization because rebuilding would take so little effort as long as we have access to resources. In our case, we can't return to fossil fuels after the 21st century even if we wanted to. Any future civilization that arises after the collapse of this would is stuck going from burning wood and whale oil straight to nuclear fission and wind power.

 

I'd rather not lose civilization in the first place.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#14
Raklian

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I ask you climate change deniers this -

 

 

Is it better to play it safe than not?


What are you without the sum of your parts?

#15
Ewolf20

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  • Our current situation regarding climate change, which is not near as bad as some have claimed. There is no evidence to support it is even approaching doomsday level.

 

As it stands, we are firmly on track for the worst case scenario, i.e. 4 or 5°C of warming later this century, which is basically the end of modern civilisation. Given the size and speed of emissions reductions that are needed, we have likely passed the point of no return now, and the window of opportunity has almost closed. CO2 emissions have begun rising again following what seemed to be a recent plateau, global average temperatures saw a huge jump between 2014-2016, the cost of climate and weather-related disasters is now the highest ever by far, sea levels are rising way faster than anyone predicted before, Arctic ice is in catastrophic decline, the oceans and coral reefs in particular are dying, megafires and droughts are spreading every year, rainfall and flooding continues to set new records, glaciers are vanishing at an astonishing speed which threatens many water supplies, forests are becoming carbon sources instead of carbon sinks, the list goes on and on. At the same time as all this is happening, we have a U.S. President who is the most viciously anti-environment leader of all time, with a cabinet stuffed full of the most greedy and evil climate deniers of any government in the world.

 

But yeah, everything's fine... nothing to worry about.

/s

 

the wasteland is coming and it fuck you up. no more robots, no more cyborgs, and no more supr Ai. :sing:



#16
Zaphod

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I ask you climate change deniers this -

 

 

Is it better to play it safe than not?

 

What I get annoyed about are the people that think playing it safe means we have a massive financial burden. This is increasingly not true and in fact the financial burden as a result of climate change impacts will far exceed any early costs it took to mitigate it. People like Jakob are saying it will be fine and we will simply implement giant global geoengineering projects. This wont be cheap.



#17
Raklian

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I ask you climate change deniers this -

 

 

Is it better to play it safe than not?

 

What I get annoyed about are the people that think playing it safe means we have a massive financial burden. This is increasingly not true and in fact the financial burden as a result of climate change impacts will far exceed any early costs it took to mitigate it.

 

 

Yeah, and they're not even questioning themselves "what if I am wrong...."

 

If it is not arrogance, I have no idea what it is.

 

Climate change proponents can't ever be arrogant because they're keenly aware of the risk if consequences of climate change unfolds the way they expect, and they know if they're wrong about that, the world is still a viable place to live in for the human species as well as millions others. Money can be replaced, you know.

 

Can't say the same for deniers...


What are you without the sum of your parts?

#18
_SputnicK_

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I ask you climate change deniers this -

 

 

Is it better to play it safe than not?

 

What I get annoyed about are the people that think playing it safe means we have a massive financial burden. This is increasingly not true and in fact the financial burden as a result of climate change impacts will far exceed any early costs it took to mitigate it.

 

 

Yeah, and they're not even questioning themselves "what if I am wrong...."

 

If it is not arrogance, I have no idea what it is.

 

Climate change proponents can't ever be arrogant because they're keenly aware of the risk if consequences of climate change unfolds the way they expect, and they know if they're wrong about that, the world is still a viable place to live in for the human species as well as millions others. Money can be replaced, you know.

 

Can't say the same for deniers...

 

 

I am not a climate change denier. I am merely positing that the issue is multi-faceted and should be approached in a critical manner. The belief that temperature will rise 4 or 5C by the end of the century is founded on the assumption that progression in alternative energies is stagnant. The reality is this is a blatant oversimplification, yet is continually overlooked. It is an underappreciated fact that solar energies are improving exponentially in a manner similar to computing power. This trend has been a constant in the past, and there is no reason to believe it should falter. There is credible reason to expect that all our solar energies will be met by the early 2030s, at the pace of this trend. This is why scientist Ray Kurzweil does not discuss climate change often, he doesn't deem it to be our greatest threat. Yet polarizing liberals hungry to blame problems on anyone but themselves continue to spout the same nonsense about global warming, acting as if it is a problem that be overcome by sheer willpower, when in reality one only needs to study a cost/performance graph to realize that the problem is one that is probable to solve itself soon under any capitalist market.


"We are attempting to survive our time so we may live into yours." -Jimmy Carter, 1977

"In my mind and in my car, we can't rewind we've gone too far. Pictures came and broke your heart, put down the blame on VCR." -The Buggles, 1980


#19
TranscendingGod

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The problem is that we are already seeing the effects of climate change and these new technologies are not developing quickly enough at the moment to completely stem the effects of climate change. Think entire Island nations wiped off the map. Think extreme variations in weather potentially decimating crops and causing famines for those countries most dependent on year to year crop production. Think increased temperatures which lower the ability for plants to photosynthesize. Think billions more of property damage and lives lost, again mainly in the countries least able to bear the burden, due to increasingly impactful weather events. Even those of us in the richest country on Earth will inevitably feel the effects of even a couple more years of increased emissions and those most vulnerable may lose their entire nation as in the various Island countries. 

 

Coal consumption is going down in the United States, China, and a myriad other rich countries but still increasing in countries like India. Oil consumption is not abating and is set to increase to its highest levels ever at over 100 mbpb. Then you have to take a look at the reduction in coal consumption and what is replacing it. It's not mainly renewables at the moment but natural gas. The potential of renewables cannot be overstated but clearly we are not at a threshold point where we can say this problem is solved because far from being solved this problem is just beginning. While we in developed nations may not be experiencing much at the moment other that a stifling summer and an extra cold snap there are nations whose existence is literally at risk. 


The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth.

#20
wjfox

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The Trump administration – led by the most unspeakably greedy kleptocrats in human history – is hell-bent on doing EVERYTHING it can to suppress clean energy. So the exponential trend of installed capacity will now be slowed. It's much the same here in the UK, where the demonically evil Tory party has been FANATICAL in destroying the fledgling solar industry in favour of continued support and subsidies for North Sea oil and gas, a country-wide expansion of fracking, etc.

 

And even if we magically switched to 100% renewables overnight, the planet would still warm to dangerous levels within a few decades, due to the inertia in the system and the 25 year delay of carbon emissions and their heat-trapping effects. Another, even bigger problem, which almost nobody talks about, is the simply gargantuan levels of heat being stored in the oceans, where 93% of energy from global warming is contained. It will take centuries for that to dissipate, and we don't have anywhere near the technology required to do so.

 

In summary: dangerous warming of the planet is pretty much inevitable from now until about 2050 or so – it will take a social, political, and technological revolution to save us during the second half of this century. I truly hope that Yuli is right, and that super-AI will deliver the miracle we need.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Doomsday Clock, Apocalypse, 2 minutes, Nuclear War

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