5 March 1970

The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons goes into effect after ratification by 43 nations.

The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) is an international treaty aimed at preventing the spread of nuclear weapons and promoting disarmament. It was opened for signature on July 1, 1968, and entered into force on March 5, 1970. The treaty was negotiated with the objective of stemming the spread of nuclear weapons and fostering peaceful cooperation in the development and use of nuclear energy.

Non-Proliferation: The NPT’s primary objective is to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and nuclear weapons technology to countries that do not already possess them. Non-nuclear-weapon states commit not to acquire or develop nuclear weapons, while nuclear-weapon states pledge not to transfer nuclear weapons or assist non-nuclear-weapon states in acquiring them.

Disarmament: Nuclear-weapon states, recognized as such under the treaty (the United States, Russia, China, France, and the United Kingdom), undertake to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to disarmament, with the ultimate goal of eliminating their nuclear arsenals. However, progress on disarmament has been slow and often contentious.

Peaceful Use of Nuclear Energy: The NPT recognizes the right of all parties to develop nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, such as electricity generation, medicine, and industry. Non-nuclear-weapon states pledge to accept safeguards administered by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to ensure that their nuclear activities are not diverted for military purposes.

The NPT has been remarkably successful in preventing the widespread proliferation of nuclear weapons. However, it has faced challenges, including concerns about compliance, the failure of some states to join the treaty, and the emergence of nuclear technology in regions of conflict. Additionally, tensions have arisen between nuclear-weapon states and non-nuclear-weapon states regarding the pace and extent of disarmament efforts.

The NPT is reviewed every five years during Review Conferences, where member states assess the implementation of the treaty and address emerging challenges. Despite its imperfections, the NPT remains a cornerstone of global efforts to prevent nuclear proliferation and promote disarmament, playing a crucial role in international security and stability.

15 December 1970

Soviet spacecraft Venera 7 successfully lands on Venus. It is the first successful soft landing on another planet.

Venera 7 was a Soviet spacecraft that achieved a significant milestone in space exploration by becoming the first spacecraft to successfully land on Venus and transmit data back to Earth.

Launch: Venera 7 was launched on August 17, 1970, using a Molniya-M launch vehicle from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Spacecraft Design: The spacecraft consisted of an orbiter and a lander. The lander, designed to withstand the harsh conditions on Venus, included a spherical descent module equipped with scientific instruments for studying the Venusian atmosphere and surface.

Venus Arrival and Descent: Venera 7 entered the atmosphere of Venus on December 15, 1970. During the descent, the spacecraft endured extreme temperatures, pressures, and sulfuric acid clouds. The descent module separated from the orbiter, and a parachute was deployed to slow its descent.

Surface Landing: Venera 7 successfully landed on the surface of Venus on December 15, 1970, becoming the first spacecraft to achieve a soft landing on the planet. The lander transmitted data back to Earth from the surface.

Data Transmission: The transmission of data from the surface of Venus was a historic achievement. Venera 7 sent back information for about 23 minutes, providing valuable data on the Venusian environment. The data included details about temperature, pressure, and composition of the atmosphere.

Surface Conditions: The surface conditions on Venus were extremely challenging, with temperatures reaching around 465 degrees Celsius (869 degrees Fahrenheit) and pressures about 90 times that of Earth’s atmosphere.

Legacy: Venera 7 demonstrated that it was possible to send spacecraft to the surface of Venus and transmit data, paving the way for subsequent missions to the planet. The Venera program, which included a series of missions to Venus, contributed significantly to our understanding of Earth’s neighboring planet.

Follow-up Missions: The success of Venera 7 led to subsequent Soviet missions to Venus, each building on the knowledge gained from the previous ones. These missions included orbiters, landers, and even some missions that deployed atmospheric balloons to study different aspects of Venus.

22 April 1970

The first Earth Day is celebrated.

Earth Day is an annual event celebrated on April 22nd, with the aim of raising awareness and promoting action to protect the environment and promote sustainability. The first Earth Day was celebrated in 1970, and since then, it has become a global event, observed by over 192 countries. Earth Day serves as a reminder that we all have a responsibility to protect the planet and its natural resources, and it encourages individuals, communities, and organizations to take action towards preserving the environment.

13 September 1970

The first New York City Marathon is run on 13 September 1970.

The New York City Marathon, often referred to as the NYC Marathon, is one of the world’s most famous and prestigious long-distance road races. It has a rich history dating back to its inaugural running in 1970.

Inaugural Race (1970): The New York City Marathon was first held on September 13, 1970, organized by the New York Road Runners (NYRR), a nonprofit running club founded by Fred Lebow and Ted Corbitt. The race was held entirely within Central Park and had 127 entrants, with only 55 participants completing the race. The first NYC Marathon was a low-key event compared to today’s race.

Growth and Relocation (1976): The race grew in popularity and, in 1976, it expanded beyond Central Park to encompass all five boroughs of New York City: Staten Island, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Manhattan. The iconic five-borough course remains the route for the race to this day.

International Competition (1970s-1980s): The 1970s and 1980s saw increased international participation, with elite athletes from around the world joining the race. In 1976, Norwegian runner Grete Waitz won the women’s race, marking the beginning of a legendary career in the marathon. She went on to win the NYC Marathon nine times, becoming one of its most iconic figures.

Marathon Major (2006): The New York City Marathon became one of the six World Marathon Majors in 2006, alongside other prestigious races like the Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago, and Tokyo Marathons. This elevated its status in the world of long-distance running and drew even more elite athletes.

Tragedy and Resilience (2001): The marathon took on a deeper significance in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The 2001 NYC Marathon was held just two months after the attacks, and it was dedicated to the victims and first responders. The event helped lift the spirits of the city and served as a symbol of resilience.

Record-Setting Performances: Over the years, the NYC Marathon has seen numerous record-setting performances and memorable moments, with world-class athletes achieving remarkable times and overcoming challenges. The course, which includes the challenging climb over the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge at the start, is known for its difficulty.

Charity and Fundraising: The NYC Marathon has a strong philanthropic component, with many participants raising money for various charitable causes. The NYRR offers guaranteed entry to runners who commit to fundraising for approved charities.

Cancellation and Adaptation (2020): The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the traditional running of the marathon. In 2020, the race was initially canceled, but a virtual version was organized, allowing runners to participate remotely.

Return to Normalcy (2021): In 2021, the New York City Marathon made a triumphant return to its traditional in-person format, with thousands of runners once again taking to the streets of the city.