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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

July 27, 2015 Very Large Fires All Across Southern Alaska

Source: Environmental Protection

The Alaska Interagency Coordination Center was tracking 290 fires in Alaska on July 25, with "very large" fires spread across southern Alaska, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The 2015 Alaska fire season is already the...

July 27, 2015 On four continents, historic droughts wreak havoc

USA Today - according to the U.N.'s îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî. Every drought is unique, said Peter Gleick, president of the Pacific Institute, a global water think tank in Oakland. "The same drought...

July 24, 2015 Climate change debate 'dictated by left-wing anti-capitalists', says Amber Rudd (UK)

Source: Telegraph

Left wing anti-capitalists have dictated the debate on tackling climate change and a Conservative approach is needed to prevent global warming, Amber Rudd, the energy and climate change secretary, will say on Friday

July 24, 2015 US Missed An Opportunity To Cut Carbon At Lower Cost

Source: Forbes

“As far as I’m concerned the renewables industry is built on the proposition that we should always do the most expensive thing first,” Rowe said at the Energy Thought Summit at Chicago’s Symphony Center. “Whereas a carbon tax or...

July 24, 2015 Did climate change kill the woolly mammoth?

Source: CBS News

It was long thought that hunting by humans was the driving force behind the demise of mammoths, giant sloths and other massive mammals that roamed the Earth tens of thousand of years ago.

July 23, 2015 The godfather of global warming's frightening prediction is getting the cold shoulder

Source: Mashable

This week, a prominent climate scientist, James Hansen, entered the fray with a study aimed at getting policymakers' attention by saying that the 2 degree Celsius target is dangerously reckless, and that we should be aiming for...

July 22, 2015 Are countries legally required to protect their citizens from climate change?

Source: Reuters

On June 24, 2015, a court in The Hague ordered the Dutch government to act faster in its duty to protect its citizens against the effects of climate change. This marks the first time the issue has been legally declared a state...

July 22, 2015 The First Half of 2015 Was The Hottest Ever

Source: Time

The average temperature around the globe was 1.58°F (88°C) higher than the 20th century average during the first six months of 2015, making it the hottest start to the year in the era of modern record keeping.

July 22, 2015 Historic Texas drought over: Zero Texans impacted by drought conditions statewide

Source: Houston Chronicle

According to the newest U.S. Drought Monitor report, not a single Texan or Texas county is still impacted by drought conditions following a spring and early summer of heavy rains and flooding

July 21, 2015 We need a business renaissance to address climate change

Source: GreenBiz

The quickening reality of climate change is re-writing the rules of prosperity. And with new rules come new challenges. Climate change is, at once, both the greatest challenge and the greatest opportunity of our time. For those...

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