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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 9, 2015 What Does Europe’s Record-Breaking Heat Wave Tell Us About Climate Change?

Source: Climate Progress

As countries across Europe continue to shatter temperature records — Germany hit 104.5 degrees Fahrenheit on Sunday, an all-time high since records began in 1881 — scientists around the world are beginning to wonder: what role is...

July 9, 2015 Exxon knew of climate change in 1981, email says – but it funded deniers for 27 more years

Source: The Guardian

ExxonMobil, the world’s biggest oil company, knew as early as 1981 of climate change – seven years before it became a public issue, according to a newly discovered email from one of the firm’s own scientists. Despite this the...

July 8, 2015 Drought leads to mass cutting of trees in Los Angeles - video

Source: Reuters

As a result of California's historic drought, thousands of trees that dot the parks and line the streets of urban Los Angeles are in the process of being cut down. John Russell reports

July 8, 2015 Alaska's On Fire

Source: Wired

This weekend, smoke smothered the high-rises of downtown Vancouver. Sunsets as far south as Ohio took on brilliant hues of red and orange. And humanity reached another potential milestone in climate change—all thanks to hundreds...

July 8, 2015 Experts gather in Paris for climate change solutions

China - However, the îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî tells us that we are heading towards average global warming of 5-6 degrees Celsius, he said. The emissions gap â the difference between pledged...

July 8, 2015 Here’s The Most Lucrative Way to Fight Climate Change

Source: Time

In a new report released by the Global Commission on the Economy and the Climate, leaders call for at least $1 trillion in annual investment in clean energy, a tripling of funding for research and development of low-carbon...

July 8, 2015 Volcanic eruptions slow down climate change - temporarily

Phys.org - According to the study, the cooling effect due to volcanic eruptions was clearly underestimated by climate models used for the last îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî (IPCC) report. Led by the...

July 7, 2015 Climate change a big factor in persistent wildfires: Professor

Source: CBC

According to an expert of wildland fire, Saskatchewan's smoky skies and persistent blazes can be largely attributed to climate change. Mike Flannigan is a professor in the department of renewable resources at the University of...

July 6, 2015 Cause and effect: how human activity is altering the environment – in pictures

Source: The Guardian

Leading environmental photographers and artists exhibit their works on the effects of anthropogenic climate change at the Verve Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, from 3 July to 5 September

July 6, 2015 Climate change compounding threats to Australia's ecosystems, studies find

Source: The Guardian

Climate change is compounding existing threats to Australia’s forests, wetlands and deserts, with several key landscapes now at risk of total collapse, a landmark series of new studies have found.

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