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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

June 18, 2014 We (UK) can turn the tide of climate change by working with China

Source: The Guardian

Much has been written about the nuclear agreements signed at the UK-China summit. Given the boost to low-carbon electricity, to energy security and to jobs, the Chinese interest in taking forward investment at Hinkley Point C,...

June 17, 2014 Chinese hints, U.S. emission cuts fall far short of climate cure

Reuters - there is a whole different level of intent," said Jennifer Morgan of the U.S.-based îWorld Resources Instituteî think tank. Christiana Figueres, head of the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat, expressed...

June 17, 2014 The global warming hiatus

Financial Post - While the îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî (IPCC) still uses the iconic word âunequivocalâ to describe warming of the climate system over the past century, a new word has...

June 17, 2014 Coal’s Share of World Energy Demand at Highest Since 1970

Source: Bloomberg

Coal dominated world energy markets last year by supplying the biggest share of demand since 1970, making it the fastest growing fossil fuel, according to an annual review by BP Plc. Consumption grew 3 percent last year, driven...

June 16, 2014 Climate change will ‘cost world far more than estimated’

Source: The Independent

Lord Stern, the world’s most authoritative climate economist, has issued a stark warning that the financial damage caused by global warming will be considerably greater than current models predict. This makes it more important...

June 16, 2014 U.N. climate talks fracture over future of carbon markets

Source: Reuters

The use of carbon markets to curb rising greenhouse gas emissions was dealt a blow on Sunday after two weeks of United Nations talks on designing and reforming the mechanisms ended in deadlock. The negotiations, held as part of...

June 16, 2014 EPA Too Fixated on the 'Global' in Global Warming, Says U.S. Chamber

Inside Climate News - The World Resources Institute, in separate comments, put it this way: "If each country considers damages only within its borders as a basis for action, countries collectively will fail to mitigate greenhouse...

June 16, 2014 Warming Arctic Could Lead to Fewer Extremely Cold Winters: Study

Source: Nature World News

Arctic warming is associated with fewer extreme winters in the U.S. and Europe, a new study suggests. January 2014 saw temperatures in the U.S fall several notches, with Minnesota recording -37°C and even Sunshine State Florida...

June 16, 2014 How to Sell a Carbon Tax

Source: Bloomberg

The best way to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases is to put a tax on carbon. Almost all economists would agree. Yet there's even wider agreement, and not just among economists, that a carbon tax can't happen. In the U.S., it's...

June 13, 2014 Heads Up Climate Change Combatants: Global Warming Likely To Resume This Year

Reason - The U.N.'s îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî 2013 Physical Sciences report issued last September acknowledged that global average temperatures during the past 16 years have not been increasing as...

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