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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

March 3, 2020 U.S. Urges Ethiopia to Reach Deal With Neighbors on Nile Dam

Source: Bloomberg

Egypt, Ethiopia and mutual neighbor Sudan should conclude an agreement before the completion of Ethiopia’s disputed Nile dam, to prevent “significant harm to downstream countries,” U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.

March 3, 2020 Climate change is threatening winter sports' very existence

Source: CNN

A warming planet has major ramifications on winter snowpack across the globe, including a long-term drying trend for many. That's a concern for winter sports enthusiasts and communities that depend on snow throughout the year.

March 2, 2020 Dramatic fall in China pollution levels ‘partly related’ to coronavirus

Source: The Guardian

Nasa satellite images show a dramatic decline in pollution levels over China, which the US space agency believes is “partly related” to an economic slowdown due to the coronavirus.

March 2, 2020 Climate change: Warm winter ruins German ice wine harvest

Source: BBC

Germany's harvest of ice wine - a dessert wine produced from grapes that have frozen while still on the vine - has failed for the first time because the winter has been too warm.

February 28, 2020 IKEA reduces climate footprint for the first time

Source: Reuters

STOCKHOLM - Carbon emissions throughout the full value chain of IKEA furniture fell for the first time last year, brand owner Inter IKEA said on Thursday citing increased use of renewable energy.

February 28, 2020 When It Comes to Sustainability, Amazon Delivers… Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Source: Truthout

Is sustainability finally cornering the stock market? That’s one way to read a recent Bloomberg News report that investment funds with Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) criteria — often marketed as “sustainable”...

February 27, 2020 Climate Change is Pushing Giant Ocean Currents Poleward

Source: Inside Climate News

A new study identifies fundamental changes in ocean circulation, with potentially dire effects on food supplies, sea level and weather in densely populated areas.

February 27, 2020 Online shopping can be worse for the environment than driving to a store

Source: CNN

In the study, researchers estimated that shopping at brick-and-mortar stores for frequently bought items such as toilet paper, shampoo and toothpaste, often results in less greenhouse gas emissions than ordering the products from...

February 26, 2020 Researchers find new reason Arctic is warming so fast

Source: Phys.org

The Arctic has experienced the warming effects of global climate change faster than any other region on the planet. Scientists at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography have developed a new theory aided by computer simulations...

February 25, 2020 We need to address streaming’s massive carbon footprint

Source: Venture Beat

According to a new report released by Netflix, the platform’s “global energy consumption increased by 84% in 2019 to a total of 451,000 megawatt hours; enough to power 40,000 average US homes for a year.”

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