exPLAINers of the Week July 30 – Aug 5

By Perfectly Plain Staff

We scour the depths of the media to bring you, our dear readers, what the best explainer pieces are each week. This week we have stopped on two great pieces. The first is Nathaniel Rich’s look at how we almost stopped climate change in the 1980s. The second is Michael Krepon’s look at nuclear weapons in wake of the 73rd anniversary of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. Rich and Krepon bring us these fascinating stories in great detail and an easy to understand way.

Losing Earth: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change

By Nathaniel Rich in New York Times

This New York Times article tells the tale of three men who, between 1979 and 1989, helped turn climate change into a major political issue. At the beginning of this period, few Washington officials knew much of anything about global warming. By the end, President George H.W. Bush was close to signing a United Nations treaty to address it.

Nathaniel Rich is a writer-at-large for The New York Times Magazine and a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books and the Atlantic. He is also the author of three novels: King Zeno, Odds Against Tomorrow, and The Mayor’s Tongue.

Rich writes with gripping, novelistic detail, and he captures the comedy and frustration of scientists struggling to shape the political sphere. His work is a gripping tale, which I believe is a must read.

To read full exPLAINer, click here.

Teodor Teofilov

The Hiroshima anniversary: 5 things you should know about nuclear weapons today

By Michael Krepon in Vox

In honor of the 73rd anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Vox wrote an explainer on where the world stands on nuclear weapons today. There were five points made, but the theme was that even though the world knows the dangers of these weapons now more than ever, we still have a fascination and desire for innovation. The article explains that these weapons are becoming too dangerous to even test.

Michael Krepon is the co-founder of The Stimson Center and Director of Stimson’s project on deterrence stability in South Asia. Krepon is the author or editor of thirteen books and more than 350 articles. Prior to co-founding Stimson, he worked at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the US Arms Control, and Disarmament Agency during the Carter administration and in the US House of Representatives, assisting Congressman Norm Dicks.

This article was interesting because it brought to light that even though the world knows the dangers of nuclear weapons, we still are making more dangerous ones. It doesn’t seem like this global arms race is going to stop anytime soon.

To read the full exPLAINer, click here.

Pawan Naidu

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