Obviously, any technological advancements that would have happened between the 60's and now would probably not have occurred, but I was wondering what the other possible consequences could be.

Further details: There was an all out nuclear exchange between the USA (and her allies) and the Soviet Union in the Autumn of 1962. I'm going to assume South America, Africa, India, and Oceania were spared from direct targeting (perhaps China too). There was no warning.

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    $\begingroup$ You'll need some more info. Where did the bombs go off? Was any continent spared? Was there enough warning that a decent chunk of people survived the initial blast? $\endgroup$ – Carduus Mar 19 '18 at 19:34
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    $\begingroup$ Then we'd probably have a cultural and technological boom in and around the Indian Ocean, and they'd quickly become the center of everything. $\endgroup$ – Carduus Mar 19 '18 at 20:37
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    $\begingroup$ Vital questions: When in the 1960s? That makes a huge difference. Which season? Surprisingly, that also makes a huge difference. All out, or limited? $\endgroup$ – RonJohn Mar 19 '18 at 20:37
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    $\begingroup$ Please use edit to add information and details to your question. Don't put the details in a comment. $\endgroup$ – James K Mar 19 '18 at 21:39
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    $\begingroup$ In 1962, the USSR had little capability to hit the continental USA with more than a few warheads. This was rapidly changing, but a Cuban escalation probably leads to a devastated Europe and Russia, much damage elsewhere, but the USA surviving. Nuclear winter would be fairly minor. $\endgroup$ – Andrew Dodds Mar 19 '18 at 22:02

Smoke and soot from firestorms like nuclear weapons can last for years.

The effects are lower atmosphere temperature for a few degrees Celsius and damage to the ozone layer.

That will damage agriculture severely and doubles the amount of UV rays.

I would assume today would:

1- Have lesser green technology, because global warming will be pushed further into the future.

2- Have better agriculture technology and methods due to the pressure on food sources.

3- Have either a cure for skin cancer, or developed a very effective sun screen, or both.

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    $\begingroup$ I'm not clear why you think agriculture gets better rather than lots of people dieing. At the time India imported food, and the Great Leap Forward left a lot of Chinese hungry. Since most rich or white people would be expected to die directly I'm not sure sunscreen would be a priority rather than say hats, or again a lot of people dieing. $\endgroup$ – user25818 Mar 19 '18 at 22:57
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    $\begingroup$ @notstoreboughtdirt Humans are resourceful, also, the greed of the individual can be easily satisfied by meeting the needs of the many, hence researches and corporations. $\endgroup$ – Aus Mar 19 '18 at 23:03
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    $\begingroup$ if the nuclear winter was in 60's today we could have found ways to deal with as suggested by this post. If there was higher risk for cancer, there would be higher funding and more people working on curing cancer and so on $\endgroup$ – Ekaen Mar 19 '18 at 23:30

We don't even know if there would be a nuclear winter. There's too much debate about the accuracy of the models.


The four major, largely independent underpinnings that the nuclear winter concept has and continues to receive criticism over, are regarded as:[155] firstly, would cities readily firestorm, and if so how much soot would be generated. Secondly, atmospheric longevity; would the quantities of soot assumed in the models remain in the atmosphere for as long as projected or would far more soot precipitate as black rain much sooner. Third, timing of events; how realistic is it to start the firestorms or war modelling in late spring or summer, which almost all US-Soviet winter papers assume, so as to depict the maximum possible cooling results. Lastly, the issue of darkness or opacity; how much light-blocking effect the assumed quality of the soot reaching the atmosphere would have.[155]

a 1988 article by Brian Martin in Science and Public Policy[157] states that although Nuclear Winter Reappraised concluded the US-Soviet "nuclear winter" would be much less severe than originally thought, with the authors describing the effects more as a "nuclear autumn"

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    $\begingroup$ The question is about the consequences of a nuclear winter, not the probability of it. $\endgroup$ – Aus Mar 19 '18 at 23:04
  • $\begingroup$ @Aus How severe a nuclear winter would have been is part of the answer. $\endgroup$ – Pere Oct 21 '18 at 12:24
  • $\begingroup$ @Pere From the OP, I assume it is higher than what is suggested in this post, and low enough for the planet to still be habitable as the OP implied. $\endgroup$ – Aus Oct 22 '18 at 9:24

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