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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

August 13, 2014 Water Efficiency in a Global Crisis

Source: Huff Post

Listen to the headlines and you will hear more and more frequent anecdotal evidence of the crisis facing our global fresh water supply. Only 3 percent of the water on earth is fresh, and of that some 2 percent is locked in the...

August 13, 2014 A global temperature conundrum: cooling or warming climate'

Science Blog - When the îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî recently requested a figure for its annual report, to show global temperature trends over the last 10,000 years, the University of...

August 13, 2014 What Ecologists are (Most) Worried About Right Now: 5 Emerging Trends in Climate Change Ecology

PLOS BLOGS - John H. Matthews is an aquatic ecologist based in Oregon and affiliated with the Alliance for Global Water Adaptation (AGWA), îConservation Internationalî, & the Colorado State University Water...

August 13, 2014 5 reasons to panic about Arizona's water, and 5 reasons not to

Source: AZ Central

A June story in the Arizona Daily Star outlined the ways Arizona could end up with an official water shortage, but it pronounced the chances of that happening anytime soon to be "slim."

August 12, 2014 When Did Republicans Start Hating the Environment?

Source: Mother Jones

On July 9, 1970, Republican President Richard Nixon announced to Congress his plans to create the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. By the end of that year, both agencies...

August 12, 2014 New study finds fringe global warming contrarians get disproportionate media attention

Source: The Guardian

A new study led by Bart Verheggen surveyed 1,868 scientists studying various aspects of climate change, asking them several questions mainly focused on what’s causing global warming. They survey also asked the respondents, How...

August 12, 2014 Extreme weather becoming more common, study says

Source: The Guardian

Extreme weather like the drought currently scorching the western US and the devastating floods in Pakistan in 2010 is becoming much more common, according to new scientific research. The work shows so-called “blocking patterns”,...

August 12, 2014 Toxic algae bloom bigger than Rhode Island headed to Florida

Source: Daily Digest News

A toxic algae bloom one-and-a-half times the size of the Rhode Island is drifting through the Gulf of Mexico, wreaking havoc on the ecosystem, and heading straight for Florida’s west coast.

August 11, 2014 Tornado strength increasing, driven by global warming - study

Source: Tech Times

Tornadoes could become stronger as time goes on, driven by global warming, according to a new study from Florida State University (FSU). Climate change could be playing a pivotal role in increasing the frequency and strength of...

August 11, 2014 Fracking campaigners criticise 'censored' report on house prices

Source: The Guardian

The government has been criticised for censoring a report into the impact of shale gas drilling that examines the effect on house prices and pressure on local services. Campaigners are calling for full publication of the study...

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