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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

April 28, 2016 Scientist Is Optimistic About Climate Change

Source: Jmportal News

“This is not a gloom and doom issue,” Somerville said. “It’s a serious issue but the world is taking the right steps to deal with it in a rational way.”

April 28, 2016 More urgent action needed on air pollution in Britain-MPs

Source: Reuters

A government plan to tackle air pollution in five major cities in Britain by 2020 will not be enough and more urgent action needs to be taken, lawmakers said on Wednesday.

April 28, 2016 United Technologies Proves Sustainability Works

Source: Just Means

Water and food are two essential things that humans need to survive. The world’s population is currently seven million and is projected to be nine million. Having enough food and water for that many people is a daunting task and...

April 27, 2016 Washington state will vote on a carbon tax this fall — but it’s complicated

Source: Grits.org

As governments worldwide begin imposing fees on pollution to try to protect the climate, a debate over dueling approaches — one that has long been restricted to conferences and academia — is becoming prominent in Washington state.

April 27, 2016 Warren Buffett Faces Pressure to Invest for the Climate, Not Just for Profit

Inside Climate News - manager of the insurance program at Ceres, a nonprofit that promotes sustainable business practices. "The markets pay attention to where he puts his money." Though Buffett profits handsomely from substantial...

April 27, 2016 Why Water Management Will Take Smart Buildings to the Next Level

Environmental Leader - There is a growing interest among institutional investors in water-related risk and disclosure, according to CDP (formerly Carbon Disclosure Project). Last year CDP found 617 institutional investors asked...

April 27, 2016 Volcanoes linked to Earth climate shifts over past 720 million years: study

Source: CBS News

Over the past 720 million years, the Earth has gone through periods of global warming and cooling, which new research ties to volcanic activity related to plate-tectonic movements. The new study, published in the journal Science,...

April 26, 2016 U.S. Senator: 'Global Warming is...the Moral Challenge of Our Generation'

Source: CNS News

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D.-Ore.) declared on the Senate floor last week that “global warming is…the more challenge of our generation.”

April 25, 2016 How NYC plans to slash greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent

Source: CBS

The city will require private building owners to update heating and power systems to help meet a goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Friday.

April 25, 2016 Editorial: The Guardian view on the UN climate change treaty: now for some action

Source: The Guardian

It was a spectacular signal of global intent on Friday when more than 170 governments signed up to the Paris deal. But it’s just the start of a long, hard road

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