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A Nuclear Winter's TaleScience and Politics in the 1980s$
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Lawrence Badash

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780262012720

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262012720.001.0001

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(p.63) 5 Publicity
A Nuclear Winter's Tale

Lawrence Badash

The MIT Press

Many non-governmental organizations have expressed concern over the threat of nuclear war in the decades since the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The twentieth century was characterized by significant environmental activism in the United States, spurred in particular by the threatened depredations of the Reagan administration. The Henry P. Kendall Foundation focused their attention on nuclear winter, first by funding the April 1983 private scientific review held by the TTAPS team at the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (comprised of Richard Turco, Owen Brian Toon, Thomas Ackerman, James Pollack, and Carl Sagan) in Cambridge. They also launched a media blitz to generate publicity. During the summer of 1983, Paul Ehrlich organized a group of about twenty scientists to discuss the biological implications of large-area decreases in temperature and light intensity. Later that year, the TTAPS team published a formal paper Science.

Keywords:   nuclear war, nuclear winter, Henry P. Kendall Foundation, publicity, Carl Sagan, Paul Ehrlich, temperature, light intensity, Richard Turco, James Pollack

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