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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 29, 2015 Climate models don't over-predict warming, Nature study shows

The Age - The researchers chose the 15- and 62-year intervals because they are the durations referenced most often by the îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî, which focuses particularly on accelerated warming...

January 29, 2015 FACT CHECK: Both sides in Keystone XL debate bend facts

Source: SF Chronicle

Supporters of the Keystone XL pipeline, which would run from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, say the privately funded, $8 billion project is a critically needed piece of infrastructure that will create thousands of jobs and make...

January 29, 2015 New-generation solar panels far cheaper, more efficient: scientists

Source: Reuters

LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – A new generation of solar panels made from a mineral called perovskite has the potential to convert solar energy into household electricity more cheaply than ever before, according to a study...

January 28, 2015 Climate change will hit Australia harder than rest of world, study shows

Source: The Guadian

Australia could be on track for a temperature rise of more than 5C by the end of the century, outstripping the rate of warming experienced by the rest of the world, unless drastic action is taken to slash greenhouse gas...

January 28, 2015 California Water Shortage: $1 Billion Plant Will Make Seawater Drinkable By End Of 2015

Source: International Business Times

While much of California remains in the grip of a three-year drought, a $1 billion desalination plant that will turn seawater to drinking water is on track to open later this year to serve residents of San Diego County. Once...

January 28, 2015 Study: Global warming 'doubles risk' of extreme weather

BBC - However, a review of research by the îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî concluded that the world has witnessed more hot days and heat waves since the 1950s and will see more changes to weather extremes...

January 28, 2015 Why Obama's Drilling Plan Ignores America's Changing Energy Role

Source: Forbes

A few years ago, President Obama outlined an “all-the-above” energy strategy. These days, his strategy seems to be “do no harm.” The plan outlined today, which would open parts of the eastern seaboard to offshore drilling while...

January 28, 2015 Here’s How We Know Global Warming Made the Blizzard Worse

Source: Wired

Manhattan may have gotten the wimpy end of Juno, but the storm chin-checked New England. Boston is buried in snow. Hurricane-force winds buffeted Nantucket. The storm surge may have permanently altered shorelines from New Haven,...

January 28, 2015 Blizzard hits Boston and New England, spares New York despite forecasts

Source: Reuters

A powerful blizzard struck Boston and surrounding New England on Tuesday, leaving some 4.5 million people grappling with as much as three feet of snow and coastal flooding but sparing New York City residents who had braced for a...

January 27, 2015 'Life-threatening' blizzard shuts down much of U.S. Northeast

Source: Reuters

A life-threatening blizzard barreled into the U.S. Northeast, affecting up to 20 percent of Americans as it kept workers and students housebound, halted thousands of flights and prompted New York to ban cars from roads and shut...

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