Stephen Hawking described climate change Wednesday as a greater threat to the planet than terrorism. AP Photo/Lewis Whyld, PA
In joint press conferences in London and Washington, scientists moved the Doomsday Clock ahead two minutes and set it at five minutes to midnight. For the first time, they added global warming to the threats that could annihilate civilization.
Professor Stephen Hawking - one of the sponsors - said: "Since Hiroshima and Nagasaki, no nuclear weapons have been used in war, though the world has come uncomfortably close to disaster on more than one occasion. But for good luck, we would all be dead."And in this Reuters report, his Cambridge University colleague Martin Rees was even more blunt.
He continued: "As we stand at the brink of a second nuclear age and a period of unprecedented climate change, scientists have a special responsibility once again to inform the public and advise leaders about the perils that humanity faces.
"We foresee great peril if governments and society do not take action now to render nuclear weapons obsolete and prevent further climate change."
Cambridge astrophysicist Martin Rees added that while the Cold War confrontation between two nuclear-armed superpowers is over, the world is closer than ever to having nuclear bombs used in a localized war or by terrorists in a city center.Wonder who he was talking about?
"A global village will have its village idiots," Rees said.