The key historical events that have moved the Doomsday Clock

Wil Jones
Saturday 28 January 2017 15:15

This week, the Doomsday Clock was moved to the second-closest to midnight it has ever been.

The Doomsday Clock, if you’ve never heard of it, is symbolic concept of a clock showing how close to the possible apocalypse we are. It is decided by the academic journal The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, and was first introduced in 1947, following the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The closer it is to midnight it is, the more like the end of the world is to happen.

The clock was recently moved forward 30 seconds to two and a half minutes to midnight, citing the rise of nationalism around the world, Donald Trump’s comments about nuclear weapons, and the damage down to the climate change movement by his administration.

But how does that compare to the where the clock has been in the past?

Statista have put together this infographic to show how close the clock has been to midnight over the decades.

Picture: Statista (Statista)

The closest the clock has ever come to the apocalypse is two minutes to midnight, in 1953, after the US tested its first thermonuclear device.

On the other hand, the further it has ever been is 17 minutes, following the end of the Cold War in 1991.

Don’t have nightmares.

More: This is what happens if every nuclear weapon on Earth is launched