Speed Reads

it is two minutes to midnight

Doomsday clock predicts we're still 2 'minutes' from the apocalypse

No, the apocalypse isn't exactly coming in two minutes. But in the grand scheme of human existence, it's getting pretty darn close.

According to the Doomsday clock, which atomic scientists conjured up during the Cold War to give an idea of how close the world was to nuclear Armageddon, we're just two minutes from midnight. That measurement remains unchanged from last year, and is the closest we've been to the symbolic end of the world since 1953, per scientists' Thursday revelation of this year's reading, BBC details.

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists crafted the clock in 1947 and placed the world at a symbolic seven minutes from midnight. It escalated throughout the Cold War as the Soviet Union and the U.S. tested devastating bombs, reaching a two-minute peak in 1953 after America tried out its hydrogen bomb. But even with "no Stalin, no Red Army," 2019 has yet again matched that terrifying prediction, the BAS revealed in Washington, D.C.

Nuclear concerns still play a role in this year's time check, seeing as "arms races seem preferred to arms control and nonproliferation agreements," one BAS member said Thursday, per NBC News. But our losing fight against climate change is also critical, as is the spread of "information warfare to undermine democracy around the world," the group said. Former California Gov. and BAS executive chair Jerry Brown (D) and summed it up succinctly: "We're playing Russian roulette with humanity."

Read more about the Doomsday prediction at BBC.