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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 16, 2016 DIVIDED AMERICA: Temperatures Rise, US Splits

Source: NY Times/AP

When it comes to science, there's more than climate that divides America's leaders and people. The mainstream scientific establishment accepts evolution as a reality, as well as the general safety of vaccinations and genetically...

August 16, 2016 Deadly storm system leaves La. in shambles, threatens new flooding in Illinois

Source: Fox News

The deadly storm system that wreaked havoc on Louisiana, where more than 20,000 had to be rescued, is working its way into the Midwest, where officials are bracing for major flooding.

August 15, 2016 Climate Risk Is Poorly Represented in Company Financial Filings

Source: Scientific American

When issuing marketing materials and press releases, U.S. companies frequently warn that rising global temperatures could cost them money. They tout specific green projects, like solar roofs and increased efficiency. But when it...

August 15, 2016 Global Warming Will Make It Nearly Impossible to Hold the Summer Olympics

Source: Gizmodo

A sobering new study shows that by the 2084 Olympics, rising temperatures will make it practically impossible for most cities to host the summer games.

August 12, 2016 Southern California is smothered in its worst smog in seven years

Source: World Herald

Southern California is experiencing its worst smog in years this summer as heat and stagnant weather increase the number of bad air days and drive up ozone pollution to levels not seen since 2009.

August 11, 2016 Are Conservationists Worrying Too Much About Climate Change?

Source: New Yorker

Watson and Sean Maxwell, a doctoral student at the University of Queensland, used the new data to identify and rank the existential threats to nearly nine thousand species, ranging from otters to lilies.

August 11, 2016 Seas aren’t just rising, scientists say — it’s worse than that. They’re speeding up.

Source: Washington Post

On a warming Earth, seas inevitably rise, as ice on land melts and makes its way to the ocean. And not only that — the ocean itself swells, because warm water expands. We already know this is happening — according to NASA, seas...

August 11, 2016 Stricter Air Pollution Standards Could Save Thousands Annually: Study

Source: NBC News

Researchers found that 9,320 lives might be saved annually by reducing of two types of air pollution — ozone and fine particulate matter — to levels below what the Environmental Protection Agency currently requires. In addition,...

August 10, 2016 Ancient ice reveals vital clues about Earth's past climate

Source: phys.org

Ice cores have led scientists to significant conclusions about climate, including that CO2 levels in the atmosphere today are higher than at any other time recorded in the ice.

August 9, 2016 U.N. chief urges large nations to ratify Paris climate accord

Source: Reuters

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged Argentina and other large nations to ratify the Paris climate accord at a Buenos Aires conference on Monday, and Argentina’s foreign minister said she hoped the country would do so by the...

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