Warming to Climate Change

Greenbiz.com reports that in a recent MIT survey “Americans now rank climate change as the country’s most pressing environmental problem – a dramatic shift from three years ago, when they ranked climate change sixth out of 10 environmental concerns.” The survey shows that people are beginning to grasp that climate change is a real issue. They want government action and are even willing to spend their own money to help.

Apparently concerned citizens also want business to be held accountable for its role in the climate change problem. BusinessWeek, October 30, 2006, reports that global warming is the next wave of litigation after tobacco, guns, and junk food. At least 16 cases are pending in federal and state courts. The targets are oil, electric power, auto, and other companies whose emissions are linked to global warming.

It may prove difficult for the plaintiffs to win these cases, but the mere threat of litigation can certainly motivate businesses to act, especially if the general population sees the problem and wants resolution. The heat is on.

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