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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

May 27, 2015 No let-up in massive India heatwave

Source: BBC

Heatwave conditions continue to sweep India where more than 1,100 people have died in the past week, officials say.

May 26, 2015 Carbon pricing ‘inevitable’ – World Bank climate envoy

Source: RTCC

The World Bank’s top climate change official says it is inevitable that more countries and businesses will start pricing the costs associated with greenhouse gas emissions.

May 26, 2015 Kevin Rudd: US, China and India key to tackling climate change

Source: The Guardian

Kevin Rudd says the US, China and India are key to a new global deal on cutting carbon emissions and tackling climate change.

May 26, 2015 Top energy firms tied to almost a third of greenhouse gases -study

Source: Reuters

PARIS – Thirty-two energy companies led by Russia’s Gazprom account for almost a third of all man-made greenhouse gas emissions if the burning of all the coal, oil and gas they produce is taken into account, a study said on...

May 22, 2015 STUDY: California TV Stations' Drought Coverage Gave Short Shrift To Climate Change

Source: Media Matters

It has become increasingly clear that human-induced climate change is exacerbating California's historic drought and will continue to make droughts in the western U.S. more common and more extreme, as many studies and leading...

May 22, 2015 Save rainforests or they will worsen climate change, warns ex-WWF chief

Source: The Guardian

Top environmentalist says areas of rainforest the size of Switzerland are lost each year and point of no return will be reached if politicians keep ignoring problem

May 21, 2015 Updated NASA Data: Global Warming Not Causing Any Polar Ice Retreat

Source: Forbes

Updated data from NASA satellite instruments reveal the Earth’s polar ice caps have not receded at all since the satellite instruments began measuring the ice caps in 1979. Since the end of 2012, moreover, total polar ice extent...

May 21, 2015 Obama: climate change poses risk to U.S. military, national security

Source: Reuters

Rising seas, thawing permafrost and longer wildfires caused by warmer global temperatures threaten U.S. military bases and will change the way the U.S. armed services defend the country, President Barack Obama is set to say on...

May 20, 2015 As States Ready Disaster Plans, Feds Urge Them To Consider Climate Change - text/audio

Source: NPR

The Atlantic hurricane season starts next month — a time when coastal states have their disaster plans at the ready. Now, the federal government wants states to consider the potential effects of climate change in those blueprints.

May 19, 2015 Ocean Microbes Can Influence Atmosphere - What Does This Mean For Climate Change?

Source: Tech Times

Ocean microbes could influence the atmosphere, according to a new study. This new finding could alter how climate models are produced and interpreted, as well as our understanding of climate change.

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