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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

April 12, 2014 UN: greenhouse gas emissions nearly doubled in first decade of 21st century

Source: The Guardian

Greenhouse gas emissions grew nearly twice as fast over the past decade as in the previous 30 years, bringing the world closer to warming that will bring dramatic and dangerous changes to the climate, according to a leaked draft...

April 11, 2014 China Plans Ban on Imports of Coal With High Ash, High Sulfur

Source: Bloomberg

China plans to ban imports of coal with high-ash and high-sulfur content as the nation seeks to limit the dirtiest fuels to fight pollution. The world’s largest coal consumer will encourage imports of higher-quality supplies,...

April 11, 2014 Business lobbying on climate change is 'a murmur and not a message'

theguardian.com - Executives organized by the business coalition BICEP (îBusiness for Innovative Climate and Energy Policyî), testified before a Senate and House task force on climate change, telling lawmakers about...

April 11, 2014 Will Climate Change Mean Terrible Food?

Source: Pacific Standard

Carbon dioxide fertilizes plants, but it can also make crops less nutritious. A new discovery could help farmers develop new strains to feed the world even as carbon dioxide levels rise.

April 10, 2014 China finds nearly 2,000 firms in breach of anti-pollution rules

Source: Reuters

Nearly 2,000 Chinese enterprises were found to be in violation of state pollution guidelines following a nationwide inspection campaign covering 25,000 industrial firms, the environment ministry said on Thursday.

April 10, 2014 World's first Water Stewardship Standard is released

Environmental News Network - The European Water Partnership, a Brussels-based NGO, has been a strong supporter and partner of the AWS bringing in European experience and expertise from the application of the European Water...

April 9, 2014 Global Warming Scare Tactics

Source: NY Times

OAKLAND, Calif. — IF you were looking for ways to increase public skepticism about global warming, you could hardly do better than the forthcoming nine-part series on climate change and natural disasters, starting this Sunday on...

April 9, 2014 EXECUTIVE PERSPECTIVE: In historic event, environment to be placed at heart of global agenda

Source: Reuters

The environment is set to take centre stage this June with the holding of a landmark meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, the home of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Environment Ministers and Government representatives...

April 8, 2014 Do U.N. Climate Change Reports Need to Change'

Scientific American - "I can see a process moving towards shorter, more targeted synthesis reports that cut across the targets of science and adaptation," said Peter Frumhoff, director of science and policy for the îUnion...

April 8, 2014 Fox News: Most Inaccurate Cable News Network On Climate Change

News Hounds - A new report by the Union of Concerned Scientists found CNN and Fox News sorely lacking in their reporting of climate change. Fox covered climate change a bit more than CNN in 2013 but its 28% accuracy rate was way...

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