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Nuclear famine... time to act

Article en anglais

With as few as hundred weapons, a nuclear war anywhere in the world would affect the global climate and agricultural production so severely that the lives of more than a billion people would be at risk, according to research findings released few days ago by the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW). The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) reacted immediately to achieve a ban on nuclear weapons as the major goal of its essence.

And you? Photo (C) ICAN
And you? Photo (C) ICAN
podcast_nuclear_famine.mp3 Podcast_Nuclear_Famine.mp3  (120.42 Ko)

Dr. Ira Helfand, the author of “Nuclear Famine: A Billion People at Risk—Global Impacts of Limited Nuclear War on Agriculture, Food Supplies, and Human Nutrition”, said the new evidence that even the relatively small nuclear arsenals of countries such as India and Pakistan could cause long lasting, global damage to the Earth’s ecosystems requires a fundamental change in our thinking about nuclear weapons.

This study follows Norway’s Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre’s announcement of last week that a conference in Oslo to highlight different aspects of nuclear weapons as a humanitarian problem is scheduled to take place next spring. Acknowledging the mounting evidence provided in this new report, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) - a coalition representing more than 200 NGOs present in 60 countries worldwide - is calling on states to use this conference as a stepping stone towards negotiations for a treaty to ban nuclear weapons.

Noting that this a critical moment for nuclear prohibition, the Chair of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons Dr. Tilman Ruff says, the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons has too often been put at the margins of nuclear disarmament privileging a national security-centered debate.
This IPPNW study provides undeniable indications of the devastating humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons, continues Dr. Ruff and evidence- based reports like these can provide an important contribution to the discussion during the Oslo conference, which should lead to a clear roadmap for a new humanitarian and legal standard.

Working with data produced by scientists who have studied the climate effects of a hypothetical nuclear war between India and Pakistan, Dr. Helfand and a team of experts in agriculture and nutrition determined that plunging temperatures and reduced precipitation in critical farming regions, caused by soot and smoke lofted into the atmosphere by multiple nuclear explosions, would interfere with crop production and affect food availability and prices worldwide.

Former Soviet president and founding chairman of Green Cross International, Mikhail Gorbachev, who received an advance briefing on the findings, said he is convinced that nuclear weapons must be abolished.

These were words and acts of world leaders, scientists, and NGOs. What would be the reaction of the civil society?

Check out the below video about how not to disarm nukes - negotiations are the solution.


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