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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.)

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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

January 28, 2016 Four Graphics (And A Book) That Help Explain Climate Change

Source: Huff Post

Though blizzards and cold snaps may have made you forget the news from last week, 2015 was the warmest year in NASA’s global temperature record, which dates back to 1880. During a January 2016 press conference (see the slides...

January 28, 2016 Keeping the world below 2 degrees is a $12.1 trillion investment opportunity, BNEF report says

theclimategroup.org - LONDON: Keeping the world below the 2 degrees Celsius pathway presents a US$12.1 trillion investment opportunity over the next 25 years, a new analysis states. The report Mapping the Gap: The Road From...

January 27, 2016 From the Nile to the Amazon, climate change threatens hydropower

Source: The Guardian

From the Amazon to the Nile to the Mekong, rivers are a lifeblood for many nations, filling taps and irrigation canals and generating hydroelectricity that is powering economic development. But a new study warns that changes to...

January 27, 2016 The climate at Davos: 3 sustainability hotspots to watch

Source: GreenBiz

This year’s World Economic Forum Annual Meeting was the first major gathering of the people who made the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals a reality. There were, in fact, several times when the architects of...

January 27, 2016 The blizzard of 2016 was influenced by manmade global warming

Source: Mashable

The blizzard of 2016 was an exceptional storm that broke all-time snowfall records in multiple locations. Yet for many people it hit, this storm was not a complete shock; a string of severe winter storms have slammed the East...

January 26, 2016 Record hot years almost certainly caused by man-made warming

Source: Reuters

A record-breaking string of hot years since 2000 is almost certainly a sign of man-made global warming, with vanishingly small chances that it was caused by random, natural swings, a study showed on Monday.

January 26, 2016 Blue skies over Beijing? Decaying suburbs bear cost as China cuts pollution

Source: Reuters

On the outskirts of Beijing, the disused factories of Chaomidian show the impact of China's drive to shut down thousands of small firms causing big pollution. Amid scrapheaps and idle machinery, the community has clean air these...

January 26, 2016 If Exxon's Punished for Climate Change, It'll Be for Lying to Investors

Source: Wired

Last week, California’s attorney general announced it was investigating to see whether Exxon had lied about the risks of climate change. New York’s attorney general launched a similar inquest last November.

January 25, 2016 Is Climate Change Causing More Frequent Blizzards?

Source: Inquisitr

As the sky clears, residents are once again questioning why the number of blizzards is increasing and if it has something to do with climate change. The answer: yes and no. Read more at...

January 25, 2016 Reflections From Davos: Leaders Deliberate What's Next for Climate Action After Paris Deal

Source: Huffington Post

Arriving home after a whirlwind week in the snowy Swiss mountain village of Davos at the World Economic Forum, those of us engaged in the climate change discussions are feeling positive but pragmatic about the challenges ahead....

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