Nukewatch Quarterly Fall 2014
SOMERVILLE, Massachusetts — The catastrophic effects on global climate and food supplies that would result from the use of just 100 of the world’s smallest nuclear weapons on major cities, are worse than researchers previously projected. Building on last year’s International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) study that anticipated the starvation of at least two billion people, a group of scientists reexamined the data using more sophisticated computer modeling and published their results in the journal Earth’s Future earlier this year.
In almost every respect, the new results paint a more devastating picture than the 2013 report. The more comprehensive earth system model found that the atmospheric soot, global cooling, decreased precipitation rates, sea ice expansion, ozone loss and increase in UV radiation, and resulting impacts on agriculture from the use of just .006 percent of the current global nuclear arsenal would be more extreme than previously imagined. Under the new scenario, this kind of a “small” regional nuclear conflict has the potential to produce a global nuclear famine.
As IPPNW Science Advisor Alan Robock told the Huffington Post earlier this year, “The only way to be sure we do not annihilate the human population is to destroy the weapons.” — PeaceVoice, July 17, 2014