On 10th January 2012 at the Doomsday Clock Symposium in Washington, DC, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Science and Security Board made the decision to move the Doomsday Clock hand one minute closer to midnight.
In 1947, the Bulletin first displayed the Doomsday Clock on its magazine cover to convey, through a simple design, the perils posed by nuclear weapons. The Clock evokes both the imagery of apocalypse (midnight) and the contemporary idiom of nuclear explosion (countdown to zero).
In a formal statement issued at the time of the announcement, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists noted:
“It is five minutes to midnight. Two years ago, it appeared that world leaders might address the truly global threats that we face. In many cases, that trend has not continued or been reversed. For that reason, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists is moving the clock hand one minute closer to midnight, back to its time in 2007.”