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Global Warming and Climate Change, Global Warning Information, Updates

Global Warming and Climate Change

Updated January 2011

The year 2010 ended with an enormous blizzard that engulfed the northeast US, paralyzing New York and Boston and much of the Atlantic Coast.  That storm was followed almost three weeks later  by yet another severe snow storm that had the same effect.  Speculation started immediately that these events had their  roots in global warming – Time Magazine wrote:

“The World Meteorological Organization recently reported that 2010 is almost certainly going to be one of the three warmest years on record, while 2001 to 2010 is already the hottest decade in recorded history. Indeed, according to some scientists, all of these events may actually be connected.”

Just a few days before at the CNN debate on climate change, UN Climate Secretary Christiana Figueres said that “private businesses are better placed than governments to tackle global warming because they can act faster...”  There appeared to be an agreement at the event that the urgency to reduce carbon emissions was such that business could not afford to wait for governments to act.

Prior to the UN-sponsored Cancun Climate Conference in December 2010, the world's largest global investors were urging the conference delegates and the US Congress to “take action now in the fight against global warming or risk economic disruptions far more severe than the recent financial crisis.”

Unfortunately, at Cancun and the year before in Copenhagen, government progress to address climate change only inched slightly forward.  But while government consensus moved by inches, the scientists tell us we should be moving by miles   – or do they?

The last two years has seen the debate of the existence of human-caused climate change -- or any climate changed -- challenged by doubters.   Some poor science conducted by some believers/ supporters, followed by unfortunate media reporting and the issues identified as hot in the recent Congressional elections saw weak support for global warming among Americans. Witness this: “The poll, one of four annual surveys conducted by Shelton Group, surveyed 1,098 Americans who at least occasionally buy green products and found only about half believe climate change is occurring and caused by human beings…”

While the majority of the American  public apparently are yet to believe in the problems of climate change and global warming and world governments unable to agree on a course of action, AC will continue to focus on potentially one of the greatest issues world society faces. Since this section was begun in April 2008 more than 1,200 articles, commentaries and reports  have been posted for our readers.  No doubt there is more to come.  (We invite you to tell us where you stand on the issues.)

 -----------------------------

Institutional investors are focused on the potential or rising risk posed by climate change to the companies they hold in portfolios.  “Climate change,” “global warming” and “sustainability” (of the company owned, over the long-term) are trigger phrases now for all manner of shareholder activities – and corporate responses. The argument is not always about “if” climate change is occurring or “who” or “what” is responsible – often, the investors now ask:  What is the company doing to prepare for and mitigate the risk?  Investors have many questions:  Has the company charted its “carbon footprint” – has management taken steps to inform shareowners of real or potential climate change risks – what are the potential costs of mitigating such risks – and more.

Looking to put muscle behind these requests, shareowners are filing numerous proxy petitions (shareholder sponsored proxy resolutions) on the ballot in 2008.  Coalitions are being formed to address climate risk issues at public companies.  On September 18, 2007, a broad coalition of investors, state officials with regulatory and fiscal management responsibilities, and environmental groups filed a landmark petition asking the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to require publicly-traded companies to assess and fully disclose their financial risks related to climate change issues. The coalition formally asked the Commission's Division of Corporation Finance to immediately begin "[c]losely scrutinizing the adequacy of registrants' climate disclosures" under existing law.

The institutional investors involved represent $1.5 trillion in managed assets and include major public employee pension funds, state treasurers and comptrollers, state attorneys general and major environmental organizations.  Their “First of a Kind” resolution will create major waves on Wall Street and in the corporate suites as the campaign goes on.   (This issue is not going anyway anytime soon.)

The coalition includes the Environmental Defense, Ceres, the California State Treasurer Bill Lockyer, Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink, Maine State Treasurer David G. Lemoine, New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, North Carolina State Treasurer Richard Moore and Oregon State Treasurer Randall Edwards, as well as New York State Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo.

The Securities and Exchange Commission staff had no immediate reaction, but in the overall dialogue regarding shareholders rights, federal regulations and corporate governance, this measure landed like a bombshell in Washington, DC.  Accountability-Central will continue to present news and commentary as the climate change issue unfolds and various capital markets players present their views and opinions.

Learn more about climate change: http://www.learnstuff.com/climate-change-and-global-warming-an-objective-overview/

 

 


Latest on Global Warming and Climate Change

January 23, 2017 We are destroying rainforests so quickly they may be gone in 100 years

Source: The Guardian

At current rates of deforestation, rainforests will vanish altogether in a century. Stopping climate change will remain an elusive goal unless poor nations are helped to preserve them

January 23, 2017 There's More Than One Way to Blow Up the Paris Climate Deal

Source: Mother Jones

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee votes on Rex Tillerson's nomination for Secretary of State Monday. At his confirmation hearing earlier this month, Tillerson disappointed some senators with his unpreparedness or...

January 23, 2017 Shallow water still hinders Rhine and Danube shipping in Germany

Source: Reuters

Shallow water after dry weather in the past month is again preventing cargo vessels from sailing fully loaded on the Rhine and Danube rivers in Germany, traders said on Monday.

January 20, 2017 Harvests in US to suffer from climate change

Source: Science Daily

Some of the most important crops risk substantial damage from rising temperatures. To better assess how climate change caused by human greenhouse gas emissions will likely impact wheat, maize and soybean, an international team of...

January 20, 2017 The last time the oceans got this warm, sea levels were 20 to 30 feet higher than they are today

Source: LA Times

Ocean temperatures today are about the same as they were more than 100,000 years ago — at a time when sea levels were 20 to 30 feet higher.

January 20, 2017 China’s air pollution woes need a greater clean-up push, environmental groups say

Source: CNBC

Two environment watchdog groups gave a cautious nod to China's efforts to tackle hazardous air pollution levels in the capital Beijing and elsewhere, but urged greater national coordination to avoid waiting three decades to meet...

January 19, 2017 Global warning: reasons to be (cautiously) optimistic about humans tackling climate change

Source: The Guardian

With climate sceptics moving into the White House, the Guardian is spending 24 hours focusing on climate change – and what we can all do to help save the planet

January 19, 2017 Affordable Water In The US: A Burgeoning Crisis

Source: Construction Equipment

Experts say it will cost more than $1 trillion to replace World War II-era water infrastructure systems over the next 25 years and make water unaffordable for more than a third of U.S. households.

January 19, 2017 2016 was the hottest year on record -- again

Source: CNN

Last year was officially the Earth's warmest since record-keeping began in the 1880s, the World Meteorological Organization announced Wednesday morning.

January 18, 2017 US Clean Energy Forecast For 2017

Source: Ethical Corporation

Ethical Corporation speaks to General Motors and Autodesk to discuss the US clean energy forecast for 2017. With Davos this week and current uncertainty around climate change policy from the White House, it’s even more important...[more]

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