Our survival as a planet depends on drastically curbing greenhouse gas emissions in the very near future. Our survival also depends on completely eliminating the danger of nuclear weapons. By fortunate coincidence, the resources (federal funding, private funding, scientific and technical expertise, jobs and infrastructure) currently being wasted on nuclear weapons can be shifted to the production of green technologies to address the climate crisis.”–Timmon Wallis, NuclearBan.US.

The threat of planetary catastrophe from both nuclear weapons and climate change seems to be rushing toward us at lightning speed. Can we act in time

In his book Warheads to Windmills, Dr. Wallis explains in detail how, by eliminating the enormous cost of its dangerous and unusable nuclear weapons, the U.S. can provide the money necessary to jump-start the switch from carbon to clean, renewable energy by 2050. It will free up hundreds of scientists to focus on new technologies and on retraining workers who will have thousands of clean-energy jobs available as the Green New Deal is making the necessary changes. In addition to cutting the huge amount of contamination weapons production adds to the atmosphere, their elimination will go a long way to changing the international feelings of animosity and fear to cooperation among nations, which will be critical to the success of meeting the climate goal.

In the 1980s, “people power” earned credit for banning both chemical and biological weapons. But as the Cold War ended, people put their heads in the sand. We hoped the 15,000 nuclear weapons held by the U.S and Russia, some on hair-trigger alert, would be safe from serious accidents or terrorist attacks. Our mega-corporations were busy making money for stockholders and hoped people wouldn’t notice the environmental problems they were causing.

Now melting ice, out-of-control burning in the rainforests, the devastating Dorian hurricane, and a 16-year-old Swedish girl are waking the world up to the enormity of the climate emergency. And a young Swedish woman who accepted the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017 for the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons is leading the push to ban the bomb as we face the prospect of another nuclear arms race with Russia.

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