Climate Change

Climate change is a hot topic in politics and on the web.  Some refer to it as "Global Warming" but here we can accept all view points. Our world is changing including the weather patterns. It is not a new situation, the world has never stopped changing.
Can our modern civilized societies as we know them today, adapt to the earth's changes and shifts?  
Are we afraid of the earth's changes so much so that we are paralized by them?
Are we humans causing or accelorated changes in climates?
This forum was initiated to discuss the facts & data about global warming.  There are very few web sites where you can review the data of global warming.

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Scientific Consensus

We are currently hearing a great deal about “Scientific Consensus”. Consensus in this case is really the collective opinion of the scientific community. Science deals in testable facts and analysis, why does it need a collective opinion about the facts of man-made global warming?
 
The argument to accept global warming is often couched in testimonial form. This Scientist here or that politician or this celebrity other there is given as evidence of global warming. Here is a good example of a site that attempts to instruct readers on how to convince a skeptic. 
 
I recently read a blog where the individual says that we should trust the climate scientist like we trust rocket scientists. The author would be surprised that I agree. A rocket scientist predicts the outcome of a launch of his design and the outcome is evaluated against his prediction.  If the rocket scientist is correct then he is trusted because he has proved his ability to correctly model the event and the veracity to test the model. The problem with climatology is that they are not able to make short-term predictions accurately so there is no method to determine the accuracy of their long-term predictions. Indeed, most climatologists will not be alive to see a fair evaluation of their models as they are currently patterned. Thus the predictions are not testable. There is no method other than an act of faith to prove the claims of climatologist and except the fervency of its true believers.  
 
The other problem with the current models is that they are all over the place on predictions. Some have more hurricanes others have fewer hurricanes, they predict floods & droughts, intense storms and no storms, temperature rises of 1C or as many as 6C. Some even predict that global warming will cause the next ice age to begin.
 
If a theory, and that is all GW is at this point, does not bring order to the data to allow for predictions then the theory is false and must be revised.
 
To answer the first question of this entry: why does it need a collective opinion about the facts of man-made global warming? The logical answer is simple, the data does not yet support the theory.

The Royal Society’s Defense of the IPCC

The IPCC report is often quoted as the definitive answer to skeptics of man made global warming.  The Royal Society’s Defense of the IPCC needs to be reconsidered. Here is my problem with the report. 

The IPCC 2001 report openly acknowledged uncertainties in modelling climate change in the future. It stated that “because of uncertainty in climate sensitivity, and uncertainty about the geographic and seasonal patterns of projected changes in temperatures, precipitation, and other climate variables and phenomena, the impacts of climate change cannot be uniquely determined for individual emissions scenarios”.
 
Critics of the IPCC have not offered alternative numerical models that give different results for how climate will be affected by the range of possible future concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

The purpose of the model is to explain observed data and to predict future data.  The statement that “impacts of climate change cannot be uniquely determined for individual emissions scenarios” is an open admission that for various concentrations of CO2, the model cannot be adequately trusted to make predictive outcomes.
 
Then the report goes on to criticize scientist who have not offered an alternative model, one by their own admission is extremely uncertain because of the lack of data in climate sensitivity, geographic and “seasonal patterns of temperature, precipitation and other climate variables and phenomena (unknown variables)”.  Maybe the critics know better.
 
So with the lack of data they produce “scenarios”.  What are “scenarios”? Scenarios are outcomes of future events based upon either an admittedly flawed model or preconceived notion of the outcome.  Either case is bad science.
 
Better a bad model (theory) than no model.

Canadian Professor: Prepare for Global Cooling

Don't blame rising levels of carbon dioxide (C02) for whatever global warming is now taking place; put the blame on "old sol" — the sun may be getting ready to put the world into the deep freezer.
So say a growing number of scientists who have studied the effect of the sun on the earth's climate and concluded that the only thing scientists understand about climate change is that it is always changing.
"Climate stability has never been a feature of planet earth,” explains R. Timothy Patterson professor and director of the Ottawa-Carleton Geoscience Centre, Department of Earth Sciences, Carleton University in an article in the Financial Post.
"The only constant about climate is change; it changes continually and, at times, quite rapidly. Many times in the past, temperatures were far higher than today, and occasionally, temperatures were colder. As recently as 6,000 years ago, it was about 3 C warmer than now. Ten thousand years ago, while the world was coming out of the thousand-year-long ‘Younger Dryas’ cold episode, temperatures rose as much as 6 C in a decade — 100 times faster than the past century's.”
Dr. Patterson insists that even though advocates of the global warming theory such as Al Gore are insisting that the "the science is settled," that is far from being the case.
"The fact that science is many years away from properly understanding global climate doesn't seem to bother our leaders at all," Patterson wrote." Inviting testimony only from those who don't question political orthodoxy on the issue, parliamentarians are charging ahead with the impossible and expensive goal of 'stopping global climate change.'”
He cited the assertion by Canadian parliament member Ralph Goodale that parliament should have "a real good discussion about the potential for carbon capture and sequestration in dealing with carbon dioxide, which has tremendous potential for improving the climate, not only here in Canada but around the world.” Patterson observed that it "would be humorous were he, and even the current government, not deadly serious about devoting vast resources to this hopeless crusade."
Patterson explained that an extensive scientific project he conducted for his government regarding the health of the Canadian fishing industry yielded results that concerned not just the condition of the native fishery, but how solar activity regulates climate.
The research that involved taking core samples of mud at the bottom of deep Western Canadian fjords used sophisticated technology that enabled him and his team to collect more than 5,000 years' worth of mud. "Clearly visible in our mud cores are annual changes that record the different seasons,” he explained.
Briefly, the research showed "a direct correlation between variations in the brightness of the sun and earthly climate indicators (called proxies ),” a find, he wrote, that is not unique since hundreds of other studies, using proxies from tree rings in Russia's Kola Peninsula to water levels of the Nile, show exactly the same thing: a direct correlation between variations in the brightness of the sun and earthly climate indicators.
 
 Among his conclusions:
· "I and the first-class scientists I work with are consistently finding excellent correlations between the regular fluctuations in the brightness of the sun and earthly climate. This is not surprising. The sun and the stars are the ultimate source of all energy on the planet.”
· In a 2003 poll conducted by German environmental Researchers Dennis Bray and Hans von Storch, two-thirds of more than 530 climate scientists from 27 countries surveyed did not believe that "the current state of scientific knowledge is developed well enough to allow for a reasonable assessment of the effects of greenhouse gases." About half of those polled stated that the science of climate change was not sufficiently settled to pass the issue over to policymakers at all.
· "Ours is one of the highest-quality climate records available anywhere today, and in it we see obvious confirmation that natural climate change can be dramatic. For example, in the middle of a 62-year slice of the record at about 4,400 years ago, there was a shift in climate in only a couple of seasons from warm, dry, and sunny conditions to one that was mostly cold and rainy for several decades.”
· "In a series of groundbreaking scientific papers starting in 2002, Veizer, Shaviv, Carslaw, and most recently Svensmark et al., have collectively demonstrated that as the output of the sun varies, and with it our star's protective solar wind, varying amounts of galactic cosmic rays from deep space are able to enter our solar system and penetrate the earth's atmosphere. These cosmic rays enhance cloud formation which, overall, has a cooling effect on the planet."
· "Solar scientists predict that, by 2020, the sun will be starting into its weakest Schwabe solar cycle of the past two centuries, likely leading to unusually cool conditions on earth. Beginning to plan for adaptation to such a cool period, one which may continue well beyond one 11-year cycle, as did the little ice age, should be a priority for governments. It is global cooling, not warming, that is the major climate threat to the world, especially Canada.”
Astrophysicist Nir Shariv, a prolific researcher and one of Israel's top young scientists who was cited by Patterson, no longer accepts the logic of man-made global warming. "Like many others, I was personally sure that CO2 is the bad culprit in the story of global warming,” Shariv wrote. "But after carefully digging into the evidence, I realized that things are far more complicated than the story sold to us by many climate scientists or the stories regurgitated by the media."
According to Dr. Shariv there is no concrete evidence — only speculation — that manmade greenhouse gases cause global warming. Even research from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is bereft of anything here inspiring confidence.
"Solar activity can explain a large part of the 20th-century global warming," he states, adding that the sun's strong role indicates that greenhouse gases can't have much of an influence on the climate — nor will cutbacks in future C02 emissions will matter much in terms of the climate.
Even doubling the amount of CO2 by 2100, "will not dramatically increase the global temperature," Shaviv states.
Finally, an article in climatecentral.org states that should solar activity take a dive tomorrow, the temperatures would cool significantly.

"Solar activity has overpowered any effect that CO2 has had before, and it most likely will again,” the article avers. "In fact, we should be more afraid of a cooling trend because of a solar minimum that will peak in 2030 that could be fairly large. As we saw from a minor solar minimum in the mid 1900s, the earth suddenly started to cool. If we were to have even a medium sized solar minimum, we could be looking at a lot more bad effects than 'global warming' would have had.”

This Article was initially posted to http://www.newsmax.com/archives/ic/2007/6/21/123227.shtml?s=icp
 

Al Gore was untruthful about observations

Some advocates of the global warming theory point to warmer-than-average local and global temperatures as evidence of "a discernible human impact" on climate. Last year, Vice President Al Gore said Tennessee had warmed substantially since he was born. Gov. George W. Bush of Texas, on the other hand, has expressed skepticism about global warming.
Are Tennessee and Texas warming? Fortunately, high-quality, long-term monthly temperature data for both states are available from January 1895 to the present. According to the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) records:

  • From 1895 to 1998 the year-round temperature in Tennessee declined an average of 0.00607F per year, or 0.63F over the 104-year period.
  • During the same period the summertime temperature (June through August) declined an average of 0.00963F per year, or a total of slightly more than 1F.

Since Vice President Gore's birth in 1948, the average temperature in Tennessee has dropped by more than half a degree (0.59F). The highest temperature ever measured in Tennessee came well before he was born, in August 1930, when Perryville recorded 113F.  Al Gore's claim to oberserving the effects of Global Warming on his grandparents farm in Tennessee are clearly false.
According to the NCDC records, the situation in Texas is similar. Although Texas warmed during the 1979-1998 period, it is still cooler than early in the 20th century.

  • From 1895 to 1998 the year-round temperature in Texas declined an average of 0.0053F per year, or a total of 0.55F.

The summertime temperature declined an average of 0.0037F per year, a total of 0.3

No Link between Hurricans and Climate Change

May 31, 2006
As you may have seen on Drudge, some environmentalists are protesting today, calling for the heads of National Hurricane Center director Max Mayfield and other NOAA officials. Their claim? That federal hurricane scientists are covering up a link between climate change and hurricanes.
I've previously stated my thoughts on this topic here, but let me say that I believe people looking for a conspiracy here are misguided.
Based upon my discussions with hurricane researchers -- some of which have been at length -- there is no general consensus on this question. Yes, more and stronger hurricanes tend to form when sea surface temperatures are warmer, but there are many more ingredients that go into a powerful hurricane, not all of which would be strengthened by a warmer Earth.
Even Kerry Emanuel, probably the most prominent advocate of a link between climate change and hurricanes, has acknowledged no scientific consensus has emerged on this issue. (He believes, however, that one will in a couple of years as forecasters like Mayfield become more comfortable with the science.)
But the bottom line is that the science on this subject simply isn't settled yet. The hurricane record is poor for all but the last 30 years, and only then is it truly reliable in the Atlantic basin, where only about 10 percent of the world's storms form. Moreover, scientists can't even describe the physics of a strengthening hurricane with confidence.
The denigration of Mayfield and other NOAA officials who are participating in a legitimate debate is bad, bad policy, and it's not good for science either.
To be fair, NOAA has mishandled the issue in the past. Clumsily, it issued a news release at the end of last year's hurricane season with an untrue statement:

Consensus Among NOAA Hurricane Researchers and Forecasters: There is consensus among NOAA hurricane researchers and forecasters that recent increases in hurricane activity are primarily the result of natural fluctuations in the tropical climate system known as the tropical multi-decadal signal.

It later applied an editor's note correcting this statement, saying it didn't represent the view of all NOAA scientists. It doesn't, and those scientists, such as Thomas Knutson, are free to air their views and publish their research. What is needed now is cool heads and smart science. But with hurricane season heating up, overt politicization and ramped-up rhetoric, I fear that won't happen.

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In Sweden, It’s Global Warming vs. Big Heavy Cars

July 5, 2007 By IVAR EKMAN

DANDERYD, Sweden — Perhaps more than most Europeans, Swedes have a love affair with big cozy cars.
And with good reason: Volvo and Saab, two of the world’s best-known brands for comfort and safety, are made right in their own backyard.
“We’re real Svenssons,” said Victoria Klintberg, a teacher who believes her use of a roomy Saab to ferry her two children, a Labrador retriever and her husband, Matti, around town constitutes the essence of Swedishness. “We have to have a station wagon,” she said.
Olle Maberg, a 76-year-old retired executive, got into his four-wheel drive Volvo V70 outside a shopping center in Danderyd and said, “It feels much safer to be in a big car than in a small one.”
But as concern about global warming ripples across this country, the average Swede’s relationship with comfortable — and highly polluting — cars is becoming strained.
The most recent available European Union statistics show that Sweden has the highest-pollution-emitting cars in Western Europe. Many of those happen to be Volvos and Saabs, which tend to be roomy, high-horsepower models that emit a high count of carbon dioxide, a major greenhouse gas.
In 2004, when the average new car in the 15 countries that belonged to the European Union at the time spewed out 163 grams of carbon dioxide a kilometer, the equivalent number in Sweden was 196. According to a study by the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, the biggest cars in all of Sweden are found here in Danderyd, a wealthy municipality with average emissions of 211 grams a kilometer.
Now a debate is brewing over how to reduce car emissions here — one with important parallels in many other European countries, especially Germany, where citizens also love the bigger, carbon-emitting luxury cars produced by their automakers.
The task was given new urgency in February when the European Commission proposed limiting emissions from new passenger cars to 120 grams of carbon dioxide a kilometer, or 6.8 ounces a mile, by 2012. And it is forcing Swedes to weigh a delicate trade-off between support for their cherished automakers and the nation’s rapidly greening attitude in which a fourth of their energy in 2003 came from renewable sources.
“In the 1950s, when Volvo and Saab made smaller cars for ordinary people, they came to define a typical Swede,” said Gunnar Falkemark, a political scientist who has written extensively about the Swedish car industry. “This sentiment has stuck, and people keep buying them.”
At the end of 2005, Volvo and Saab, which were sold in the 1990s to Ford and General Motors, respectively, together made up more than 40 percent of the top 10 brands on Swedish roads. Last year, all four top-selling models came from the two carmakers.
The latest version of the No. 2 car on this list, the Saab 9-5 station wagon, has average emissions of 218 grams of carbon dioxide a kilometer. The top-ranking brand, the Volvo V70, which alone made up more than 10 percent of the market for new cars in 2006, emits 231 grams of carbon dioxide a kilometer, more than 100 grams beyond the new goals set by the European Union.
The popularity of the two brands is the main factor bumping Sweden to the top of the European Union’s emission list because of their large share of the domestic market, analysts agree.
Because Saab and Volvo make up a crucial part of the Swedish economy, the government — like others in the European Union — provides indirect support. The tax code is structured so that company employees receive the maximum tax benefit for driving big new Volvos and Saabs.
“The tax system is tailor-made for these national treasures,” Mr. Falkemark said. The result is that almost half of all new cars sold in Sweden are sold to companies — and half of these are Volvos and Saabs.
“This is where some of the biggest cuts will have to be made,” said Jos Dings, the director of the European Federation for Transport and Environment in Brussels, referring to government support for Saab and Volvo. “In the U.K., company cars are more fuel-efficient than private cars, instead of the other way around, because the tax system encourages fuel efficiency rather than size.”
The Swedish car industry, which represents only Volvo and Saab, maintains that it is moving toward emissions reductions and that further regulation is not needed. Technical progress, especially the development of engines using nonfossil-fuels, like ethanol and biodiesel, will allow consumers to enjoy both the comfort they are accustomed to and a clean conscience, it argues.
Bertil Molden, the managing director of BIL Sweden, which represents all manufacturers marketing cars in Sweden, including foreign ones, said that environmental standards were quickly improving and that the view of Sweden as the worst emissions offender in Europe would soon be obsolete.
The number of cars running on biofuels in Sweden has risen rapidly in recent years: more than 16 percent of new cars sold in May were classified by the government as environmentally friendly because most run on ethanol, up from 13 percent in the same period a year before, according to BIL Sweden.
“The industry has developed products that mean you don’t have to choose between safety and comfort, and environmental friendliness,” Mr. Molden said, pointing to the rising use of biofuels.
At Saab, more than 80 percent of all new autos sold are so-called biopower cars, meaning they can use ethanol and gas, said a company spokesman, Christer Nilsson.
Niklas Gustavsson, a spokesman for environmental issues at Volvo, said that new technology was moving ahead quickly at the company and that it was also aiming to broaden its offerings of smaller cars.
But environmentalists say the planet cannot wait that long and that Swedes need to learn to drive less comfortably.
Magnus Nilsson, a transport analyst with the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation, said the continuous growth in the size and strength of cars must stop, and that technological development would have to be aimed at fuel efficiency, not just replacement fuels. “I’m a big believer in what engineers can accomplish,” he said. “But in the last 20 years, new technology has not been used to make the cars more fuel efficient — just stronger.”
Yet much depends on whether the country can learn to wean itself off its diet of larger cars.
“As global warming becomes more evident,” said Mr. Maberg, the retired Volvo owner, “it will get more and more embarrassing to drive around in a big and heavy car like this.”

 

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Many Arctic Plants Have Adjusted to Big Climate Changes

Another example that shows how mother nature is in charge of the planet's change...planets are adjusted to the change.
 
 
 
June 15, 2007
By ANDREW C. REVKIN

Many Arctic plant species have readily adjusted to big climate changes, repeatedly recolonizing the rugged islands of the remote Svalbard archipelago off Norway’s coast through 20,000 years of warm and cool spells since the frigid peak of the last ice age, researchers report in today’s issue of the journal Science.
Their finding implies that, in the Arctic at least, plants may be able to shift long distances to follow the climate conditions for which they are best adapted as those conditions move under the influence of human-caused global warming, the researchers and some independent experts said.
Some experts on climate and biology who were not involved with the study, which was led by scientists from the University of Oslo, said it provided a glimmer of optimism in the face of generally bleak scientific assessments of the vulnerability of ecosystems to the atmospheric buildup of greenhouse gases.
Terry L. Root, a biologist at Stanford who has been involved with many studies concluding that plants and animals are measurably feeling the effects of human-driven warming, described the Svalbard research as “great news.”
“The large number of documented changes has created quite a concern about the fate of many species,” Dr. Root said. The new study, she said, shows that “some Arctic plants, and hopefully vegetation in other areas, apparently are able to respond in a manner that compensates for the rapid warming.”
Norwegian and French scientists analyzed the DNA of more than 4,000 samples of nine flowering plant species from Svalbard, a group of islands between the Scandinavian mainland and the North Pole. They said they found genetic patterns that could be explained only by the repeated re-establishment of plant communities after the arrival of seeds or plant fragments from Russia, Greenland or other Arctic regions hundreds of miles away.
The wide dispersal of the plants presumably occurs through a combination of Arctic winds, driftwood or dirt carried in floating ice and bird droppings, the scientists said.
Julie Brigham-Grette, a geosciences professor at the University of Massachusetts, said the findings were consistent with research from Alaska showing that forests had extended farther north during a period, warmer than the present, that peaked around 11,000 years ago.
“As the proper habitat is available, plants will survive,” she said. “I have not seen this demonstrated so clearly as it is in this paper. If dispersal is not a limiting factor, then maybe the rate of warming ongoing in the Arctic will not be a limiting factor in plant survival in distant places.”
Inger Greve Alsos, the study’s lead author, said natural adaptability in the plants might be tested if the projections for rapid Arctic warming from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change came to pass. She also cautioned that the evidence for resilience and long-distance mobility in Arctic plants could be the exception, not the rule.
The ability of Arctic flora to disperse widely is probably an evolutionary consequence of the region’s tendency toward sharp climate swings, she said.

 

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UN investigations of Climate Change caused by Humans

This is what the UN is saying about Climate Change.
Does anyone have other information about UN 'facts', the pannel's of researchers and any known agendas?
The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the world's most respected authority on the subject. Established in 1988--that's 20 years ago, people--by the United Nations (UN), the sole purpose of the group is to evaluate the risk of climate change brought on by humans.
Moving beyond just its existence, let's turn now to its reports. The panel's first report was published in 1990, followed by subsequent ones in 1995, 2001, and, most recently, 2007. In that latest report, in the section titled, "The Physical Science Basis," the conclusions are as follows:

  • Warming of the climate system is unequivocal.
  • Most of (>50%) the observed increase in globally averaged temperatures since the mid 20th century is very likely (confidence level >90%) due to the observed increase in anthropogenic (human) greenhouse gas concentrations.
  • Hotter temperatures and rises in sea level "would continue for centuries" even if greenhouse gas levels are stabilized, although the likely amount of temperature and sea level rise varies greatly depending on the intensity of human activity during the next century.
  • The probability that this is caused by natural climatic processes alone is less than 5%.
  • World temperatures could rise between 2.0 and 11.5° F during the 21st century and:
    • Sea levels will probably rise by 7.08 to 23.22 inches.
    • There is a confidence level >90% that there will be more frequent warm spells, heat waves and heavy rainfall.
    • There is a confidence level >66% that there will be an increase in droughts, tropical cyclones and extreme high tides.
  • Both past and future anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions will continue to contribute to warming and sea level rise for more than a millennium.
  • Global atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrogen oxide have increased markedly as a result of human activities since 1750 and now far exceed pre-industrial values over the last 650,000 years.

Another section of the IPCC's 2007 reported, "Mitigation of Climate Change," outlines ways to prevent rising temperatures and decrease carbon emissions. And this, my friends, is where the money is.
The notion is that there is no way to mitigate climate change without heavy and constant investment into clean and efficient technologies.

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Oldest DNA samples prove planet was a lot hotter

Scientists who probed two kilometers (1.2 miles) through a Greenland glacier to recover the oldest plant DNA on record said Thursday the planet was far warmer hundreds of thousands of years ago than is generally believed.
DNA of trees, plants and insects including butterflies and spiders from beneath the southern Greenland glacier was estimated to date to 450,000 to 900,000 years ago, according to the remnants retrieved from this long-vanished boreal forest.
That contrasts sharply with the prevailing view that a lush forest of this kind could only have existed in Greenland as recently as 2.4 million years ago, according to a summary of the study, which is published Thursday in the journal Science.
The samples suggest the temperature probably reached 10 degrees C (50 degrees Fahrenheit) in the summer and -17 C (1 F) in the winter.
They also indicated that during the last period between ice ages, 116,000-130,000 years ago, when temperatures were on average 5 C (9 F) higher than now, the glaciers on Greenland did not completely melt away.
"These findings allow us to make a more accurate environmental reconstruction of the time period from which these samples were taken," said Martin Sharp, a glaciologist at the University of Alberta, Canada, and a co-author of the paper.
 
"What we've learned is that this part of the world was significantly warmer than most people thought."
In a separate paper, also published in Science, European experts said they had analysed the world's deepest ice core, enabling them to reconstruct patterns of warming and glaciation over the past 800,000 years.
The 3,260-metre (10,595-feet) core was drilled into the East Antarctica icesheet at the Franco-Italian base, Dome C. The drillers, gathered in a venture called the European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica (EPICA) stopped just 15 metres (48.75 feet) short of the bedrock.
Using traces of the hydrogen isotope deuterium in air bubbles trapped in the ice layers, the scientists built a record of greenhouse-gas concentrations over the aeons, which in turn provides a record of temperature.
They found the temperature varied widely, by as much as 15 C (27 F) over the 800,000 years. In the last Ice Age, which ended around 11,000 years ago, the temperature was 10 C (18 F) lower than today.
The EPICA team had previously analysed the Dome C core to a depth equivalent to 650,000 years ago.
 

 

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153 Global CEOs Call for Climate Action

 
Source: GreenBiz.com
GENEVA, July 6, 2007 - The chief executives of 153 companies worldwide have committed to speeding up action on climate change and called on governments to agree as soon as possible on measures to secure workable and inclusive climate market mechanisms post 2012, when the Kyoto Protocol expires.

The call was made in a business leaders statement issued at the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit convened by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon on 5-6 July in Geneva. The statement, called "Caring for Climate: The Business Leadership Platform," provides a global call from business leaders, many of them attending the Leaders Summit. The UN Global Compact, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) facilitated its development.

Signatories to the statement, including 30 from the Fortune Global 500, commit their companies to "taking practical actions to increase the efficiency of energy usage and to reduce the carbon burden of products, services and processes, to set voluntary targets for doing so, and to report publicly on the achievement of those targets annually". They also commit to dealing with the climate issue strategically and to building relevant capacity. They undertake to work collaboratively with other enterprises on a sector basis and along their global supply chains, promoting recognized standards and taking joint initiatives to reduce climate risks.

According to the statement, business leaders expect from government the "urgent creation, in close consultation with the business community and civil society, of comprehensive, long-term and effective legislative and fiscal frameworks designed to make markets work for the climate, in particular policies and mechanisms intended to create a stable price for carbon".

Welcoming the statement, UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner, said: "Climate change is shaping global markets and global consumer attitudes. There will be winners and losers. Companies who seize the opportunities, who adopt environmental, social and governance policies and who evolve, innovate and respond to these challenges are likely to be the pioneers and industry leaders of the 21st century".

"Currently, a plethora of initiatives are underway across public and private sectors. Leadership on climate change requires us to all work to combine these strands and weave together these threads in order to maximize international efforts towards a low carbon economy," he said.

The climate statement concludes with an invitation to the UN Global Compact to promote the public disclosure of actions taken its signatories and, in cooperation with UNEP and the WBCSD, to communicate on this on a regular basis, starting in July 2008.

Also at the Leaders Summit, the UN Global Compact, UNEP and WBCSD jointly launched "Caring for Climate: Tomorrow's Leadership Today", which provides a collection of case studies of good practices by companies taking climate action.

Visit here to download the statement and view the list of signatories.

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