We've recently seen a detailed report from the Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change forecasting the impact of global warming. Unfortunately, the study does not make for happy reading.
It shows that for even relatively small changes in global temperature, the impact on particular ecosystems can be severe. Coral reefs and the Arctic are the most obvious examples. Harm to these regions from rises in temperature has already happened and may only get worse.
The report estimates that humans have increased global temperatures by one degree already. Then as averages temperatures increase further, the impact of river and coastal flooding gets worse. As does the impact on both fishing and agriculture. Plus mangrove forests will be severely affected by any future temperature increase. Hopefully this won't occur, but change is needed to prevent it because temperatures appear on track to rise further according to the report.
The report advocates rapid and immediate action to help limit these potentially harmful trends. Fortunately, ethical investing is one step in the right direction.
Environmental considerations are an important selection criteria for ethical portfolios. Companies with strong environmental records feature heavily, along with other criteria such as helping society, and avoiding corruption and rule-breaking. Fortunately, companies are taking note of the rise of ethical investing and improving their actions and reporting. Hopefully, as ethical investing becomes increasingly mainstream, companies will pay ever more attention to these important issues.