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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:



Latest on Global Warming and Climate Change

September 23, 2016 100 countries push to phase out potentially disastrous greenhouse gas

Source: The Guardian

A loose coalition of more than 100 countries, including the US and European nations, is pushing for an early phase-out of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), a powerful greenhouse gas that if left unchecked is set to add a potentially...

September 23, 2016 EU wants to speed up approval of Paris climate deal

Source: Reuters

European Union environment ministers will try next week to overcome an embarrassing delay in the bloc’s approval of the landmark Paris accord on global warming that Europe has long championed, Slovakia said on Wednesday.

September 22, 2016 Here's How Global Warming Could Trigger the Next Financial Crisis

Source: Fortune

Move over mortgages. There’s now something much, much bigger to worry about, and harder to curtail, and far more likely to cause the next financial crisis: global warming

September 22, 2016 The politics of confronting climate change

The Baltimore Sun - In the U.S., for example, states need to move together. A proposal to increase carbon emission cuts in Maryland and eight other East Coast states that make up the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative has a...

September 22, 2016 BU Trustees Adopt Broad Climate Change Strategy

Source: Boston University

Expanding BU’s efforts to curb climate change, the Board of Boston University Trustees last week unanimously approved a broad strategy, including efforts to avoid investments in companies that extract coal and tar sands oil, the...

September 21, 2016 August 2016 Global Temperatures Set 16th Straight Monthly Record - text/video

Source: The Weather Channel

Global mean temperatures set new record highs for both the month of August as well as the summer months of June through August, according to three separate analyses.

September 21, 2016 France’s Sarkozy says population bigger threat than climate change

Source: Reuters

World population growth is a bigger problem than climate change, French presidential candidate Nicolas Sarkozy said on Thursday, pouring more fuel on a fire he ignited this week when he appeared to downplay man-made climate...

September 21, 2016 Arctic Ocean Update: Will An Increased Atlantic Water Heat Be Felt Following The Melting Of Sea Ice?

Source: Science World Report

According to, the Arctic region has significantly warmed up, and one evidence that proves such happening is the melting of sea ice covering the Arctic Ocean. The seasonal minimum is reached every mid-September; and so...

September 21, 2016 Dramatic Visualizations Show Just How Quickly the Arctic Is Melting

Source: Gizmodo

On September 10th, the Arctic hit its annual summertime ice minimum. According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center, it was the second lowest summertime low since satellite record-keeping began. And as a series of new...

September 20, 2016 Countries Will Ratify Climate Agreement at the U.N.

Source: Scientific America

NEW YORK—Presidents and prime ministers, environmental advocates and entrepreneurs have descended on the Big Apple to help the landmark Paris climate deal take force and discuss new ways of reducing greenhouse gases.

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