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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

June 10, 2016 El Niño is dead. Long live La Niña!

Source: USA Today

El Niño is dead, scientists declared Thursday. It was 17 months old. The infamous climate pattern defined by warmer-than-average Pacific Ocean water is likely to be succeeded by its cooler kid sister, La Niña

June 10, 2016 France to formally ratify Paris climate accord on June 15 - Minister

Source: Reuters

President Francois Hollande will formally sign the Paris climate agreement on Wednesday, June 15, making France the first industrialized nation to ratify the landmark accord, Environment Minister Segolene Royal said on Friday.

June 10, 2016 Climate change could trigger tropical evacuations, researchers advise

Source: Berkley

Global warming by just 2 degrees Celsius is likely to force some tropical plant, animal and human populations to relocate hundreds of miles from their current homes this century, according to research published today in the...

June 9, 2016 Last month, for the first time ever, the UK generated more energy from solar than coal

Source: Digital Trends

The United Kingdom just passed a huge milestone in its renewable energy program – in May, for the first-ever calendar month, the UK generated more solar power than coal power. The difference wasn’t slight either. In fact, about...

June 9, 2016 Norway takes global lead with first ever nationwide deforestation ban

Source: CS Monitor

Norway announced a zero deforestation policy in its procurement of goods, two years after making a pledge with Germany and Britain to 'promote national commitments that encourage deforestation free supply chains.'

June 9, 2016 Dry Taps and Lagoons of Sewage: What America’s Water Crisis Looks Like

Source: The Nation

The report documents the impact of rising water costs and inadequate infrastructure, which are putting millions of people at risk for shutoffs, illness, foreclosure, and even of losing their children, as lack of running water can...

June 9, 2016 Alaska on track for hottest year since records began

Source: The Guardian

This spring was easily the hottest the state has ever recorded and it contributed to a year-to-date temperature that is more than 10°F (5.5°C) above average, according to data released Wednesday by the National Oceanic and...

June 8, 2016 Forest fires and logging threaten India’s progress on climate goals

Source: Reuters

Since the end of April, fires in parts of India’s northern states of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh have destroyed or damaged 26,000 hectares of forests, and killed three people, officials say

June 8, 2016 Arctic Ice Is On Track to Reach its Lowest Level in History

Source: Gizmodo

New data shows that May saw its lowest-ever sea ice extent, by a significant margin. Which means it’s very likely that by the height of summer, Arctic sea ice will be at its lowest levels ever recorded.

June 7, 2016 The Great Barrier Reef: a catastrophe laid bare

Source: The Guardian

When the coral dies, the entire ecosystem around it transforms. Fish that feed on the coral, use it as shelter, or nibble on the algae that grows among it die or move away.

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