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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 21, 2015 Climate scientists say 2015 on track to be warmest year on record

Source: The Guardian

The Earth experienced its hottest June and the hottest first half of the year since records began, according to scientists. Off-the-charts heat is “getting to be a monthly thing”, said Jessica Blunden, a climate scientist for the...

July 21, 2015 Arctic Sea Ice Rebounded—But the Melting Hasn’t Stopped

Source: Time

Arctic sea ice volume increased by more than a quarter after the summers of 2013 and 2014 as a result of unusually cool temperatures, a deviation from the general downward trend of ice levels, according to new research published...

July 20, 2015 In Greenland, climate change is already hard at work

Source: CBS News

Temperatures continued to rise, and glaciers kept shrinking. The impact has been dramatic in Greenland, the huge ice-covered island between the North Atlantic and Arctic oceans

July 20, 2015 World Scientists: Climate Change as Serious a Risk as Nuclear War

Source: EcoWatch

Scientists from the UK, U.S., India and China say in a report commissioned by the UK that deciding what to do about climate change depends on the value we put on human life, both now and in years to come.

July 19, 2015 Japan pledges 26% emissions cut by 2030

Phys.org - According to the UN's îIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Changeî (IPCC), a two degree C pathway requires greenhouse gas cuts of 40-70 percent by 2050 compared to levels in 2010âand to zero or below...

July 17, 2015 Climate change seen as greatest threat by global population

Source: The Guardian

Climate change is what the world’s population perceives as the top global threat, according to research conducted by the Pew Research Center, with countries in Latin America and Africa particularly concerned about the issue.

July 17, 2015 Scientists say the planet’s weather is becoming more conducive to wildfires

Source: Washington Post

Even as wildfire season rages – particularly in Alaska and Canada, where over 11 million combined acres have burned so far this year – a new scientific study says that fire risks across the Earth are rising, in tandem with a...

July 17, 2015 California flexes muscles in water tussle with farmers

Source: SF Gate

California water regulators flexed their muscles on Thursday by ordering a group of farmers to stop pumping from a branch of the San Joaquin River amid an escalating battle over how much power the state has to protect waterways...

July 17, 2015 Science Confirms 2014 Was Hottest Yet Recorded, On Land And Sea - text/audio

Source: NPR

On the temperature front, Europe was hotter than ever. But it wasn't hotter than blazes everywhere. The eastern U.S. got a break. The winter there was especially cold, which led some climate skeptics to question the whole idea of...

July 16, 2015 Gloom and Doom Not a Good Strategy for Climate Change Advocates

Source: Huff Post

The idea of branding climate change could seem like another exercise in navel-gazing unless you consider the effectiveness of the opposition. They've got branding down, relentlessly repeating the mantra, "science is inconclusive...

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