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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 16, 2015 Suck it up: Carbon capture technologies may be able to remedy climate change

Source: Christian Science Monitor

Scientists are developing new devices that can literally suck carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. They say that this carbon capture and storage is a necessary tool for avoiding catastrophic climate change.

July 15, 2015 Global warming is making your flight longer — and more pollutive

Source: Salon

Climate change is causing wind patterns to change over the Pacific Ocean, leading to longer commercial airline flight times and causing airplanes to burn more fuel and emit more greenhouse gases.

July 15, 2015 Treat climate change as seriously as national security: report

Source: rEUTERS

Governments should treat climate change as seriously as threats to national security or public health, partly by focusing more on the worst scenarios of rising temperatures, an international report said on Monday.

July 15, 2015 Researchers estimate Degree at which Sea Levels will Likely Increase

Source: NYC Today

A team of researchers from University of Florida has predicted in its study the levels to which sea rise can take place due to global warming. The researchers have stated that sea levels could increase by 20 feet in areas across...

July 14, 2015 Climate scientists find surprising reason for faster Arctic meltdown

Source: Washington Post

Relatively few tropical storms ever make it as far north as Greenland, the ice-covered island that straddles the Arctic Circle east of Canada. But the ones that do appear to be inflicting serious damage — and not just to...

July 14, 2015 Tipping the Scales in Our Favor: The Fossil Fuel Divestment/Renewable Investment Movement

Source: Huff Post

Let's be honest: We all know why the U.S. Congress won't pass comprehensive climate change legislation or enact a regulatory framework that accelerates America's transition to a clean energy economy.

July 14, 2015 What tragedy is needed for action on the environment?

Source: The Hill

There has been no shortage of recent news regarding some of the deepest political and philosophical divides in our nation. Stories on the environment, from the release of the papal encyclical "Laudato Si: On the Care of our...

July 14, 2015 Unraveling the Relationship Between Climate Change and Health

Source: NY Times

Is climate change a serious threat to human health? Simple logic would suggest the answer is yes, a point that the Obama administration is using to build support for the president’s effort to make climate change a centerpiece of...

July 13, 2015 Benefits far outweigh costs of tackling climate change, says LSE study

Source: TheGuardian

The economic benefits for a country from tackling climate change easily outweigh the costs, according to a study that seeks to highlight the incentives for individual nations to take urgent action to cut emissions.

July 13, 2015 Geothermal heat below West Antarctic ice 'SURPRISINGLY high'

Source: The Register

Geothermal heating from the Earth beneath the intensively-studied West Antarctic Ice Sheet has been measured for the first time ever, and been found to be "surprisingly high" according to investigating boffins.

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