tv Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Announces Doomsday Clock Adjustment CSPAN January 26, 2017 9:59am-10:50am EST
new home construction, corporations that own homes across the nation, and they are giving -- getting away with usewing companies to subcontractors, american subcontractors illegally hire illegals. with that being said, they are not employees. 9's for everybody, or anyone that will use 10 guys of the illegals. .hat turns into a 10-99 you should be able to look into this and see how many fake 10-99's were handed out when this economy took a dive, and people say, the illegals are taking jobs that we don't care about? i am one of them. i am a skilled labor owner of a company that has got my job
taken away because of greed. agreed is from builders from new-home construction to commercial. now you are sending illegals to our homes. greta: i have to interrupt you because we are going to bring you over to an event with the atomic scientists. they are holding a news conference today in washington on the iconic doomsday clock, a story from the l.a. times. a change of policy and posture. how close the world is to midnight. the let's listen in here live --erage on c-span pair c-span. >> in making the decision, a group that includes 15 nobel laureates.
event, we are delighted to have with us a member of the board of sponsors who holds the rank of career and has served the u.s. as ambassador to the united nations, the russian federation, india, el salvador, nigeria, and jordan. david is a member of the science and security board, expert on climate change, and retired professor of meteorology and international affairs at penn state university. he is the founding director of penn state solutions, weather and climate risk. lawrence krauss is the chairman of the bulletin board of sponsors. he is the director of the origins project at arizona state professor ofd earth and space exploration and the physics department. he is an internationally renowned theoretical physicists
and is the author of the forthcoming book, "the greatest why areer told so far: we here?" he is the one who pulls together and health development statement of this important announcement found at the bolton's website at the bolton.org. davided by lawrence and that highlights the points we are going to make today can be found on the new york times website. i am the executive director and publisher of the bolton of atomic scientists and am delighted to be with you here today. make no mistake, this has been a year. on our website, the statement makes clear that over the course of 2016, the global security landscape dark and the international community failed to come to grips with humanity passes most pressing eggs --
existential threats, nuclear weapons and climate change. today, greater depth on the key issues we are focusing on. has beenost troubling two concerns adding to a challenging global landscape. the first has been the cavalier and reckless language used across the globe especially in the united states during and after the presidential campaign with nuclear for -- nuclear threats. the second is a growing with scientific expertise. pressing challenges including climate change. there is a troubling propensity to discount or outright reject expert advice related to international security including the conclusions of intelligence experts. the board concludes in no uncertain terms that words
matter in ensuring the safety and security as our planet -- of our planet. miscalculation is so high. they have the ability to the walked back, but so as we have seen, influential actors offer their behavior in ways that do not promote confidence and steady or smart decision-making. in 2016, the board warned that three minutes to midnight is far too close. action and brinksmanship have continued. the rhetoric have become almost commonplace. to convey a concern about the unique moment and issue a call
to see it -- to leaders and citizens across the globe, to put the world on a safer footing, the board takes the unprecedented step first time it is three moving the rock and 30 seconds closer to midnight. we move the clock a half minute closer to midnight. it is now 2.5 minutes to midnight. if i can ask my colleagues to return to the podium, we can continue.
>> nuclear weapons have been at the center of our concern for many years. pretty stability and continuity are prized when it comes to nuclear weapons policy. the results of miscommunication or miscalculation could be so catastrophic. unfortunately, nuclear volatility has been and order of thebe the day. north korea's continued nuclear weapons development, the steady march of the arsenal modification program in the nuclear weapons states, simmering tensions between nuclear armed india and pakistan, and stagnation in arms control, are all considerable concerned. twoh korea conducted weapons tests, the second in september yielding this white -- twice the explosive power of the first.
in january, the test took place. 2017 new year's statement, kim jong un own said he would have tests with range. stockpiles is underway in all nuclear states. russia is building new silo-based missiles. nucleark last of missile submarines and new rail mobile missiles as it revamps other intercontinental ballistic missiles. the united states forges ahead with plans to modernize part of its triad. bombers, land-based missiles, and nuclear missile carrying submarines, adding new capabilities such as cruise missiles with increased ranges. as it improves the survivability of its own nuclear versus, china
is helping pakistan build separate platforms. pakistan and india continue to andnd the number of weapons the sophistication of their nuclear arsenals. perhaps in the view of many, posing the greatest danger for nuclear use. nuclear rhetoric is now loose and destabilizing. andng the election campaign as president trump engaged in casual talk about nuclear weapons, suggesting south korea and japan might acquire their own nuclear weapons to compete with north korea, we are more as rachelimpressed, just told you, that words matter, words count. successful in accomplishing the goals during its first year. it's future is in doubt under the new administration.
observers and analysts out there. who have proposed that whether -- rather than tearing up the deal, principles specifically related to enrichment should be made part of a new international goals standard -- gold standard. prospect of negotiations resuming. it is hoped the new president and president couldn't can take their relationship to something further and more meaningful in the area of nook we're arms reduction. thank you very much. >> climate change should not be a partisan issue. the well-established physics are not liberal or conservative in character.
so long as carbon dioxide continues to be pumped into the atmosphere, irrespective of political leadership. administration needs to say clearly and unequivocally that it accepts climate change caused by human activity as reality. unlesslem can be solved its existence can be recognized. there are no alternative facts here. fewme go through a specifics that caused the board to remain concerned and continue to be concerned about climate change. from global efforts to limit climate change have ultimately produced mixed results over the past year, paris agreement went into effect in 2016 and countries are taking some actions to bring down emissions of greenhouse gases. there are encouraging signs that global annual emissions were flat this past year in 2016, there is no assurance this
heralds a breaking point. continued warming of the world, as measured in 2016, underscores a clear fact. nothing is fundamentally amiss with the scientific understanding of climate physics. primarytivity is the cause of climate change. unless carbon dioxide emissions are dramatically reduced, global warming will continue to threaten the future of humanity. warmest year on record and it broke the record of 2000 15, which broke the record of 2014. eckstein of the 17 warmest years on record have been recorded since 2001. this is much longer than anyone -- any one period. from local effects in the united states, we have seen catastrophic floods in houston, baton rouge, north carolina, they continue.
in the north full, we have experience multiple occasions in which the temperature is being near freezing. this is 30 to 40 degrees warmer than average case. more and more of the research in greenland and and -- antarctica plunged to greater and faster sea level rise. six impasse of the threat of climate change were highlighted. stability of countries, tensions, adverse effects on food prices and availability, increased risk to human health, the negative impact on investments and competitiveness, and potential climate discontinuities in secondary prizes here. unfortunately, the international unity did not take the steps to begin the path toward a net zero carbon emissions world. the climate change conference produced little progress the odd
emissions goals pledged. the political situation in the united states is of particular concern. hastrump administration four candidates at cabinet level positions that foreshadowed the possibility of administration will be openly hostile toward progress of even the most modest climate change. climate change should not be a partisan political issue. well-established physics of the art are not liberal nor conservative in character. toernational leaders need refocus attention on achieving the additional carbon emissions and carbon emission reductions needed to capitalize on the promise of the paris accord here. the united states needs to make statementmake a clear is -- that it accepts reality.
alternative facts will not make this go away magically. thank you very much. to thank youant all for coming to what i believe is a historic day. in addition to the factors that have long given at least a chair of nuclear weapons, it continues to monitor the threats arising from new emerging technologies. over the past year, two in particular stood out. to -- in december, u.s. intelligence agencies concluded russia intervened to help donald trump in ways that highlight the vulnerability of critical information systems in cyberspace. news in the hacking of politically sensitive emails,
may have an impact on the perceived legitimacy of the electoral process in the united states. the question of whether the fabric of democracy may be imperiled by reducing the faith in the integrity of elections and the very information on which to an informed public can vote remains suspect. it is at this level cyber technology begins to represent a deeper global threat. represent a near term threat associated with the modern world's increased andance on the internet information technology. there are also causes for concern. hacking may have the potential to create grave and broad impacts. threaten national or international activities, natural electronic power grids, and nuclear power is, and the based on thedoms
privacy of individuals in a court democracy. autonomous systems are evolving at a rapid place as self driving vehicles demonstrate. these offer great opportunities but also present possible threat. from economic threats, as a great fraction of the workforce, may be replaced from machine learning systems, to the more immediate dangers that no systems may come to rely more heavily on such systems and result in these actions. there is an intimate relationship between reliance on nuclear arsenal and the need to control in the systems. front, newechnology technology that allows precise dna manipulation also holds out great hope force -- disease, but makes the ability to engage in melissa's -- malicious activities potentially much more accessible to groups and governments that do not have a sophisticated infrastructure. ecological en route -- occurring at a
speed that challenges society's ability to keep faith. in the lose faith institutions upon which they must rely, rather than against them. return to the themes that led us to this moment, i want to emphasize the historical significance of today. the doomsday clock is closer to midnight than it has ever been in a lifetime and all -- of almost anyone in this room. the last time it was closer with theears ago, 1953 after then soviet union exploded as first hydrogen bomb, creating the modern arms race. the first time the words or stated policies of one two people placed in high positions have so impacted our perception of the accident -- existential threats we believe the world faces. this is a great time of great opportunity and potential challenge. expert advice is crucial if
governments are to effectively deal with global threats. we are extremely concerned about the willingness of governments, including the current administration, to ignore or discount science, empirical evidence, and consider expertise during the decision-making process. facts are stubborn things. account. be taken into world leaders not to my failed aptly to do with these threats, but increased the threat of nuclear war through a variety of statements and actions, including careless rhetoric. threaten perhaps treaties like the nonproliferation treaty by considering modernization of nuclear weapons, which may require nuclear testing.
we call on these leaders, particularly russia and the united states, to refocus on reducing existential risk. in no small part consulting with takingel experts and scientific research into account. u.s. and russian leaders need to come together to negotiate nuclear arms. they need to consider reducing the alert level of nuclear riskss, which catastrophic accidents. they need to not embark on modernization programs, which are expensive and destabilizing. they need to engage countries like north korea and discouraged proliferation in countries like pakistan and india. to step back further from the brink will require leaders who have vision and restraint. president trump and president putin, who claim great respect for each other, can choose to act together as statements, or
act as petulant children, risking our future. regardless, these issues are two important to be left in the hands of a few men. we call upon all people to speak and send a loud message to your leaders that you will not allow them to needlessly threaten your future and the future of your children. has set the 2017 clock at 2.5 minutes to midnight. we chose the doomsday clock seven years ago because it allows us a rare opportunity to reach the global public directly with an enduring icon, and raise the profile of urgent global existential threats the public needs to be aware of to act responsibly. the future of the clock and our future is in your hands. thank you.
rachel: with that, we have concluded our statements. any questions? thank you. from the los angeles times, just to clarify, mr. krause, you said this should not be left in the hands of one leader making crazy statements. i know you meant trump, but was the second person put in? ok. i just wanted to clarify. >> good guess. thatu looked at a category profit you to move the hands slowly forward. out of everything you spoke about, from nuclear proliferation, climate change, ther threats, what was
single biggest factor that wanted you to move the hands forward? >> we have an obligation to you to tell you there is no single and the three or four we focused on, the old traditional one of nuclear concerns is now joined clearly by climate change but also cyber and new scientific developments, so beautifully elaborated here today by lawrence. i think rather than picking favorites, we hope you will pick the lot and tell people it is the conjugation, if i can put it this way, the congregation of the set of activities that put us on the trail of further moving hands forward. lawrence: let me add one thing to tom's cogent summary which is exactly right. the current situation and the situation of the last few years
has been dangerous and potentially unstable. what we are seeing on top of these factors is a new verbal response by world leaders, which is a great concern. that is new. and recent. , to compoundole all of those factors causing us to move the clock forward. >> that is really a combination of not only very loose talk about very dangerous weapons, blatantltaneously, a disregarding of basic facts, basic scientific facts, and looking for expertise or the knowledge meant an acceptance of factual expertise. the words span multiple categories. ,hen we take all of that aboard
advance the clock 30 seconds. >> maybe i could add one word. to put salt in the wound i hope we have created. the notion that the scientific nonscientist but a great respecter of science, is now totally irrelevant, is in itself a disastrous and self-defeating conclusion. in the back there. please wait for the microphone. each this yourself. >> i'm from rt america news that i have two questions. what is your response to the upgrading of arsenal russia and the united states have pledged to, and what the recommend alternative way, -- alternatively, and second, you the ability to keep up
with technology. do you mean the lessening of democracy and the rise of affects the way technology may be used or misused? and the disregard for science does plan to that, so what are the implications the public does not really understand, the implications of the technology itself? i can answer the u.s. russia equation question. that majoris obvious and to to reemphasize inuild the nuclear arsenal the face of complete abandonment of a long history that goes back to the cuban missile crisis before, of the united states and then soviet union now russia, leading the past to reduce our nuclear weapons from a total above 60,000 to down around 12,000 to 14,000, has much more
work to be done. been proposed that at least 1000 or 900 either target for the next reduction. include might also reserve and dismantled weapons one way or another, so it is a true measure of nuclear weapons on both sides. that has gotten stuck over u.s. russia differences, it has gotten stuck over mr. putin's interests in not further talking about this question. rather to -- rather than go up, it is time to continue to build down. let me expand on that. there are close to 15,000 nuclear weapons of the world. the united states and russia at least have 5000 weapons of these. -- that our are national laboratories and sure each year are safeguarded and ensure our work. reason too rational
need a greater arsenal than 5000 weapons. it is already excessive and far more than the world needs. thesecond thing is nonproliferation treaty, not that douires countries not have nuclear weapons to not obtain them, but requires nuclear states in the world toward disarmament. we are continuing to risk violating the treaty by not moving toward that goal and an explicit effort to modernize weapons, which will put pressure on this country and russia to test weapons, will be a radical and dangerous new move, which i think would be a clear violation of that treaty. if we expect nonnuclear states to not want to obtain nuclear weapons, we have to demonstrate we believe they are not important and by modernizing, we demonstrate the opposite.
to answer the question about technology, it is a many faceted area. technology is evolving in ways that in the current climate, changing at incredible rates. out, as, as we pointed new connection between evolving technology and the nature of democratic institutions and the ability of governments to manipulate information that is of great concern. that there are key questions that need to be addressed. fortune favors the prepared mind. true one might not say there is an existential threat associated with news cyber and artificial intelligence technology, and biotechnology, it is easy to foresee possible existential threats. important to create institutions that control them, which is one of the reasons to create substitutions to exploit those possibilities. it will be too late once they are out. rachel: if i can pick up on
we focusedlaborate, particularly on the threats. at the heart of what a scientist about -- is about is identifying find to the advancements that have the potential to, as we have come to learn, destroy the planet butestroy the also make it a significantly better place, safer and more healthy. there is enormous optimism in technological advancement. if we could focus on ensuring that the negative cost versus of advancement are lessened and reduce, it will be a safer and healthier place. we feel it is imperative that we they do these risks so not come to fruition and we are ofe to reap the benefits technological evolution. our founders in 1945 witness to tests and of nuclear
also understood the potential of nuclear power. has theenergy that potential to electrify the planet. understood there was no way we would be able to realize that benefit. and a those contain risks. i think climate change fits in perfectly with that. technological advancements have allowed billions across the planet to come out of poverty. it's enormous benefits it brings. if we are not attentive to the risks, we can destroy the planet. merging technologies, we feel it is our response below to start a conversation about what kinds of visitations need to be built now, so we continue to benefit from the benefits of cyber technology, artificial intelligence, that will bring so much advancement but so much
risk if we do not pay close attention and build institutions required now. lawrence: let me add to that beautiful statement by reinforcing the statements tom and david also made. sensiblecy that is requires facts to be facts. things we want to do is to be there to provide the facts as the basis of policy, not to make policies, but sensible policies cannot be made unless we all except that facts are facts. people can have their own opinions but not facts. the best thing we can do is promote for the public and world leaders what those facts are so that sensible and rational decisions can be taken place that will take us back from the brink. thank you. yes, please. >> thank you so much.
i am martin, security program director for social responsibility and i understand the -- there will be a briefing on capitol hill later today. it is my sincere hope, i was hoping i would see here today, the chairs and ranking members of senate armed services and house armed services. i hope they make an appearance. my question for you is, if they were here, congress obviously plays a role in the movement of the clock. how would you advise them? i will just start it i'm sure my colleagues will have thoughts here and i will talk mostly about climate change on this. years of whatt happens when an administration by itself come without any congressional support, tries to move climate risk and the management of climate risk going forward. can be done but we
know the constitution is clear on who passes laws and who has the budget, you know, and for extra credit, it is not the administration, the executive branch. it is congress. if you want real change, congress has to be on board. we know the constitution is clear on who passes laws and who has thewhen they are motivated to do so, they are extremely constructive. the navy loves to take credit for nuclear power on summaries. andnavy went kicking screaming into this. congress made them do it. they now take full credit. for climate and nuclear arms reduction, for the management of innovative and do technologies as we have talked about it, significant upside but also we needant risks, congress to thoughtfully engage with the administration to collectively work on what is best for our country and the manage the risk whilemate change in a way
maintaining our economy and increasing our quality of life. untilill not happen congress becomes actively engaged in this challenge. in.as: perhaps i can jump the answer is how much time do we have. the really interesting thing i would put at the top of the list, first and foremost, you look very carefully at the new forosals and ideas enlarging and changing the nuclear posture. we increase decision-making time? can we find more stability in the deployment and arrangement of our deterrent on both sides, separation of missiles and were heads and things of that sort,
wise things that have been suggested by real efforts -- experts in the area. can we get reduction negotiations done again between u.s. and russia. can we as a result we to include china,er states, britain, france, india, pakistan, israel, because they will have to join. is can we gettion the nuclear treaty ratified? i agree with lawrence that the nonproliferation treaty says we will not build up. it says we will move toward eliminating. ofting is a primary function building up and not eliminating. the treaty as to that. these days,r threat mindlessly because we are still ahead. being ahead means freezing in ofs area and the combination the ability to improve and
strengthen and make secure the existing arsenal without testing is a proven fact now. finally, i'm sitting next to a naval officer. i was a naval officer. will remove one of the obstacles of the south china sea, that we professed adherence but we ought to move, and of course the arctic, as the admiral just reminded me, is an important piece of that. i could go on but let me leave those on the top of your list, if i can. setence: let me add, we specific actions can take place. some of those actions, i am not sure congress is aware of it. the fact that we have large fractions on high alert status means, it raises the possibility of an accidental nuclear war. the last two presidents, obama
and george bush before him, before they came into office, shouldthe alert status be changed. it was never changed. that is something the administration could do unilaterally to make the world safer. we are in a time where there is a lot of talk of spending choices of dollars on infrastructure programs and some fraction of that is on the mall. a modernization could cost up to $1 trillion. it is a devastatingly large that hasprogram limited rationality. congress can choose to spend money in better ways and by choosing to not embark on modernization, there will be a huge impact. tom mentioned it but may be coupled do not realize this country has not ratified the comp has its treaty. it is one of several countries that hasn't. we have not ratified the treaty.
ratifying the treaty would go a long way into doing something congress would do. rachel: sorry about that. if you could stand and introduce yourself. >> maybe this seems trivial, but why only moving it a few seconds? it is not as severe? is that something we will never approach? may be racial canal onto this. there were several factors. the world is a more dangerous place and one concern was the verbiage happening. it is six or seven days into a new administration and actions speak louder than words. messaged to send a things are not going in the right direction. it is the derivative that matters more than an absolute
value. is, this is historic and i want to emphasize that. the clock has not been closer to midnight in 64 years. a lot older than you are. things are injuring -- inching in a more dangerous path but we try not to act on the moment. based on policies this week and next week, we can decide again next year what to do. things are getting worse and it seemed appropriate to point out they are getting worse. rachel: around the new year, you might remember the foreign outster of pakistan tweeted abouttery statement pakistan's's nuclear capabilities as a result of fake news, a fake news story out of israel.
the bolton felt it was moment,ve that at this in a very threatening environment, much of which we captured when we moved the clock from five minutes to three minutes to midnight. most of what we're talking about now, are things that joe the clock from five to three. but there are different things happening. the words being used are careless. there is a sense that they do not matter and we do not need to take them seriously. of yet we can see evidence leaders and countries taking .ction based on words how do we convey concerns about that? how do we stay true to our which has looked at actions taken, treaties signed, and speak happening, about and it knowledge that that is what we are looking at, but we are very concerned about the
direction of the statements being made because they suggest a worrying trend? that is what the board has spent considerable time discussing in the meetings and conversations we have had. we have never moved the clock a half minute, 30 seconds. this would be new and we anticipated a question and we hope to that -- we hoped that this change of moving a half minute would drive a question like that. felt it was quite important to say that words do matter and they do count, especially when the stakes are so high, risk of communication are so high, and the expertise , it has to be precise in so many of the things we're talking about. this half minute was something we felt strong and comfort with
because it suggested the new introduction of a new set of factors that we had not concerted before. thank you for the question. yes, please. >> i am joshua from slate magazine or i wondered if you could compare the level of threat and the type of threat now to the early 1950's. was thistime the clock close, how are the natures of the threats we face similar to then? i was probably the only person alive in the 1950. fortune. much to your not just the hydrogen bomb but the 50 megaton bomb by the soviet union, it was an unnerving and spectacularly difficult problem. compounded as it was in the
1950's by the cuban missile crisis which pointed out that actions matter. words in that case or to mask and hide what was going on with respect to the deployment of cuba and clearly to mask and that quitect obviously now from the facts, local authority for circumstances of uncertainty, if i can put it that way, was delegated in a situation compounded an increased by unnerving impact of that set of concerns. concerned by the potential of growth rather than reduction. the potential of words being taken at face value. the potential of our words about the reality, science, and analytical conclusions of merit,
not being taken as seriously and as importantly as they must be. if anything, while my memory is getting more fragile with age, the comparison that rachel gave you and that lawrence and david here have so cogently explained is, in my view, a real one and it takes us back unfortunately in comparative terms to an age of great uncertainty. uncertainty when we believe that hiding under desks could somehow help us deal with the nuclear danger, uncertainty when we felt building more weapons was the answer and the race took us to 60-70,000, 1500 is an unfathomably large number. why in the hell would you want 50-60,000 on both sides in a race to see that the counting game somehow provided
you with benefits. for sanity, for science, for realism, four, i hope, cogent and sensible leadership, that we are here today. lawrence: let me add two things. as is as tom just said and 1953 was themarks, beginning of an arms race, a dangerous one. this is in recent memory, the first time we are potentially beginning another arms race. modernizationthe programs of a superpower, the nuclear superpowers, suggest that we may be, it in that sense, in a similar time. equally irrationally. the second thing is since i have been share, there is a difference tween now and 1963.
the bolton looks at things beyond nuclear weapons and climate change is a key factor. that is a fundamental difference and when we look at the world, we are cut -- concerned about being in the threshold of climate change. it is a clear difference that impacts on our decisions as well. it means the world faces accidents -- existential threats we did not face years ago. emerging new existential threats. there is a whole slate of things we have to face with eyes wide prevent and deal with and hopefully lead to improvements rather than peril. in 1953, many scientists thought the ocean would actually take up all of the carbon dioxide and everything would be fine. subsequently, throughout the
1950's, we learned that was not the case in the iconic curve showed the atmosphere was accumulating larger amounts of carbon dioxide. as lawrence mentioned and the ambassador mentioned, this threat is continuing to accelerate. in addition to everything said about the potential restarting of an arms race and nuclear weapons, the risk of climate change and the fact that although the science community understands it and they understand it's threat, the political community has really not taken this to account yet. a combination of all of these is why we see at the bolton the clock back to levels not seen in over's -- in over 60 years. rachel: we are at the end of our time. can see thee, you
statement available on our site. we urge you to come take a look. we greatly appreciate your interest in it. if the announcement house generate the global conversation on these issues, we think it is the first step in making a planet a safer place. thank you very much. [applause] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017] [indistinct conversations]
>> president trump departing washington ms. our heading to philadelphia for the congressional republicans annual policy retreat. he will speak through the afternoon. you will also hear from bike -- vice president mike pence and british prime minister trees a may. live coverage of all of those speeches here on c-span. our producer is in philadelphia and has been and will be through the end of tomorrow. tweeted out this picture of philly this morning, protesters there last night. went to the news conference with paul ryan and mitch m