What Is Doomsday Clock And How Does It Work? A 5-Point Explainer

Doomsday Clock was set to 90 seconds to midnight on Tuesday. (Reuters Photo)

The Doomsday Clock has been ticking for 76 years, but on Tuesday, it was set at 90 seconds until midnight, the closest to the hour it has ever been. The midnight has a symbolic meaning – representing the point of annihilation.

Here are five facts on the Doomsday Clock:

  1. In the world of science, the Doomsday Clock is a symbolic timepiece showing how close the world is to ending. It was created in 1947 by a group of atomic scientists, including Albert Einstein.

  2. According to Reuters, a Chicago-based non-profit organization called the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists updates the time annually based on information regarding catastrophic risks to the planet and humanity.

  3. The world events are discussed by a board of scientists and other experts in various fields, including 13 Nobel Laureates, who determine where to place the hands of the clock each year.

  4. More than 75 years ago, the clock started ticking at seven minutes to midnight. At 17 minutes to midnight, the clock was furthest from doomsday in 1991 as the Cold War ended and the US and Russia (then Soviet Union) signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty.

  5. On Tuesday, the Doomsday Clock was set at 90 seconds to midnight, the closest it has ever been to midnight. This is the first time it has moved since it was set at 100 seconds to midnight in 2020.

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