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Our Best Point the Way: On the 100th anniversary of the Nobel prize, 100 Nobel laureates warn that our security hangs on environmental and social reform

7 December 2001

The most profound danger to world peace in the coming years will stem not from the irrational acts of states or individuals but from the legitimate demands of the world's dispossessed. Of these poor and disenfranchised, the majority live a marginal existence in equatorial climates. Global warming, not of their making but originating with the wealthy few, will affect their fragile ecologies most. Their situation will be desperate and mani festly unjust.

It cannot be expected, therefore, that in all cases they will be content to await the beneficence of the rich. If then we permit the devastating power of modern weaponry to spread through this combustible human landscape, we invite a conflagration that can engulf both rich and poor.

The only hope for the future lies in co-operative international action, legitimized by democracy. It is time to turn our backs on the unilateral search for security, in which we seek to shelter behind walls. Instead, we must persist in the quest for united action to counter both global warming and a weaponized world.

These twin goals will constitute vital components of stability as we move toward the wider degree of social justice that alone gives hope of peace.Some of the needed legal instruments are already at hand, such as the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, the Convention on Climate Change, the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaties and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

As concerned citizens, we urge all governments to commit to these goals that constitute steps on the way to replacement of war by law.To survive in the world we have transformed, we must learn to think in a new way. As never before, the future of each depends on the good of all.

Zhohres I. Alferov Physics, 2000
Sidney Altman Chemistry, 1989
Philip W. Anderson Physics, 1977
Oscar Arias Sanchez Peace, 1987
J. Georg Bednorz Physics, 1987
Bishop Carlos F.X. Belo Peace, 1996
Baruj Benacerraf Physiology/Medicine, 1980
Hans A. Bethe Physics, 1967
James W. Black Physiology/Medicine, 1988
Guenter Blobel Physiology/Medicine, 1999
Nicolaas Bloembergen Physics, 1981
Norman E. Boriaug Peace, 1970
Paul D. Boyer Chemistry, 1997
Bertram N. Brockhouse Physic, 1994
Herbert C. Brown Chemistry, 1979
Georges Charpak Physics, 1992
Claude Cohen-Tannoudji Physics, 1997
John W. Cornforth Chemistry, 1975
Francis H. Crick Physiology/Medicine, 1962
James W. Cronin Physics, 1980
Paul J. Crutzen Chemistry, 1995
Robert F. Curl Chemistry, 1996
His Holiness The Dalai Lama Peace, 1989
Johann Deisenhofer Chemistry, 1988
Peter C. Doherty Physiology/Medicine, 1996
Manfred Eigen Chemistry, 1967
Richard R. Ernst Chemistry, 1991
Leo Esaki Physics, 1973
Edmond H. Fischer Physiology/Medicine, 1992
Val L. Fitch Physics, 1980
Dario Fo Literature, 1997
Robert F. Furchgott Physiology/Medicine, 1998
Walter Gilbert Chemistry, 1980
Sheldon L. Glashow Physics, 1979
Mikhail S. Gorbachev Peace, 1990
Nadine Gordimer Literature, 1991
Paul Greengard Physiology/Medicine, 2000
Roger Guillemin Physiology/Medicine, 1977
Herbert A. Hauptman Chemistry, 1985
Dudley R. Herschbach Chemistry, 1986
Antony Hewish Physics, 1974
Roald Hoffman Chemistry, 1981
Gerardus 't Hooft Physics, 1999
David H. Hubel Physiology/Medicine, 1981
Robert Huber Chemistry, 1988
Francois Jacob Physiology/Medicine, 1975
Brian D. Josephson Physics, 1973
Jerome Karle Chemistry, 1985
Wolfgang Ketterle Physics, 2001
H. Gobind Khorana Physiology/Medicine, 1968
Lawrence R. Klein Economics, 1980
Klaus von Klitzing Physics, 1985
Aaron Klug Chemistry, 1982
Walter Kohn Chemistry, 1998
Herbert Kroemer Physics, 2000
Harold Kroto Chemistry, 1996
Willis E. Lamb Physics, 1955
Leon M. Lederman Physics, 1988
Yuan T. Lee Chemistry, 1986
Jean-Marie Lehn Chemistry, 1987
Rita Levi-Montalcini Physiology/Medicine, 1986
William N. Lipscomb Chemistry, 1976
Alan G. MacDiarmid Chemistry, 2000
Daniel L. McFadden Economics, 2000
CÚsar Milstein Physiology/Medicine, 1984
Franco Modigliani Economics, 1985
Rudolf L. Moessbauer Physics, 1961
Mario J. Molina Chemistry, 1995
Ben R. Mottelson Physics, 1975
Ferid Murad Physiology/Medicine, 1998
Erwin Neher Physiology/Medicine, 1991
Marshall W. Nirenberg Physiology/Medicine, 1968
Joseph E. Murray Physiology/Medicine, 1990
Paul M. Nurse Physiology/Medicine, 2001
Max F. Perutz Chemistry, 1962
William D. Phillips Physics, 1997
John C. Polanyi Chemistry, 1986
Ilya Prigogine Chemistry, 1977
Burton Richter Physics, 1976
Heinrich Rohrer Physics, 1987
Joseph Rotblat Peace, 1995
Carlo Rubbia Physics, 1984
Bert Sakmann Physiology/Medicine, 1991
Frederick Sanger Chemistry, 1958; 1980
JosÚ Saramago Literature, 1998
J. Robert Schrieffer Physics, 1972
Melvin Schwartz Physics, 1988
K. Barry Sharpless Chemistry, 2001
Richard E. Smalley Chemistry, 1996
Jack Steinberger Physics, 1988
Joseph E. Stiglitz Economics, 2001
Horst L. Stormer Physics, 1998
Henry Taube Chemistry, 1983
Joseph H. Taylor Jr. Physics, 1993
Susumu Tonegawa Physiology/Medicine, 1997
Charles H. Townes Physics, 1964
Daniel T. Tsui Physics, 1998
Archbishop Desmond M. Tutu Peace, 1984
John Vane Physiology/Medicine, 1982
John E. Walker Chemistry, 1997
Eric F. Wieschaus Physiology/Medicine, 1982
Jody Williams Peace, 1997
Robert W. Wilson Physics, 1978
Ahmed H. Zewail Chemistry, 1999

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