Newest climate change champ–American Girl doll Evette Peeter, plus the Climate-Smart Mining Initiative. 175 nations sign up to end plastic pollution, and the SEC’s new rules for ESG investors.
Newest Climate Change Champ–American Girl Doll Evette Peeter, The Climate-Smart Mining Initiative, 175 Nations Sign Up To End Plastic Pollution, SEC’s New Rules For ESG Investors
175 NATIONS SIGN UP TO END GLOBAL SCOURGE OF PLASTIC POLLUTION
The impacts of plastic production and pollution on the triple planetary crisis of climate change, nature loss and pollution are a catastrophe in the making. Exposure to plastics harms human health, and potentially affects fertility, hormonal, metabolic and neurological activity, while open burning of plastics contributes to air pollution.
That’s why Heads of State, environment ministers and other representatives from 175 nations, endorsed a historic resolution at the UN Environment Assembly in Nairobi last week to end plastic pollution, and forge an international legally binding agreement, by the end of 2024.
The historic resolution, entitled “End Plastic Pollution: Towards an internationally legally binding instrument”, was adopted with the conclusion of the three-day UNEA-5.2 meeting, attended by more than 3,400 in-person and 1,500 online participants from 175 UN Member States, including 79 ministers and 17 high-level officials.
Norway’s Minister for Climate and the Environment, Espen Barth Eide, said, “Against the backdrop of geopolitical turmoil, the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-5) shows multilateral cooperation at its best,” said President of the Assembly, and. “Plastic pollution has grown into an epidemic. With this resolution we are officially on track for a cure.”
Why does this resolution matter to us? The resolution, aimed at becoming a legally binding agreement by the end of 2024, would reflect diverse alternatives to address the full lifecycle of plastics, the design of reusable and recyclable products and materials, and the need for enhanced international collaboration to facilitate access to technology, to allow the revolutionary plan to be realized.
DEEPER DIVE: UN News, YouTube, Recycling Today
THE SEC PROPOSES RULES TO ENHANCE AND STANDARDIZE CLIMATE-RELATED DISCLOSURES FOR INVESTORS
The Securities and Exchange Commission has said for the first time that public companies must tell their shareholders and the federal government how they affect the climate, a sweeping proposal long demanded by environmental advocates.
The nation’s top financial regulator gave initial approval to the much-anticipated climate disclosure rule at a meeting last week, moving forward with a measure that would bolster the Biden administration’s stalled environmental agenda.
At that meeting, the SEC officially proposed rule changes which would require companies to include certain climate-related disclosures in their registration statements and periodic reports, including information about climate-related risks that are reasonably likely to have a material impact on their business, results of operations, or financial condition, and certain climate-related financial statement metrics in a note to their audited financial statements.
According to the SEC press release, the required information about climate-related risks also would include disclosure of a registrant’s greenhouse gas emissions, which have become a commonly used metric to assess a registrant’s exposure to such risks.
SEC Chair Gary Gensler, said, “I am pleased to support this proposal because, if adopted, it would provide investors with consistent, comparable, and decision-useful information for making their investment decisions, and it would provide consistent and clear reporting obligations for issuers.”
Why does this proposed ruling matter to us little guys? The proposed rule — approved by a 3-to-1 vote — aims to give investors a clearer picture of the risks that climate change might pose to companies, because of disasters like droughts and wildfires, changes in government environmental policies or consumers’ declining interest in products that contribute to global warming.
Environmental and corporate-governance advocates said the transparency the rule requires would hold companies accountable for their role in climate change, and give investors more leverage in forcing changes to business practices that contribute to rising global temperatures.
DEEPER DIVE: SEC, NYT, EENews, ThoughtLeadership
NEWEST CLIMATE CHANGE CHAMPION, AMERICAN GIRL DOLL, EVETTE PEETER!
American Girl dolls is a national brand that aims to tell the story of our country through the eyes of young women. Each doll comes with its own story, told in book form. Meet Evette Peeter: the newest American Girl doll whose story is drawn from the Anacostia River. Peeter is a nature lover who is full of crafty ideas for reusing and upcycling clothes. But she never thought borrowing clothes from Gran E’s closet would uncover a family secret—or that her work to clean up the polluted river in her THE NATION’S CAPITOL and might be a way to heal the rift in her family too.
Evette’s accompanying book, The River and Me, was written by author and Anacostia High School alumna, Sharon Dennis Wyeth, along with Katrina Lashley, program coordinator at the Smithsonian’s Anacostia Community Museum.
According to Wyeth, a Washington native who grew up in the era of segregation, swimming in the Anacostia River was a way to relax and relieve stress. In an interview with the Washington Post, Wyeth said 1949 began the era of desegregated swimming pools in the District, but the city’s African Americans were booed and harassed out of them. So many folks just went back to swimming in the river.
Wyeth brought these memories to Evette’s backstory when American Girl wanted her to write her story. Of all the books she’d written , Wyeth hadn’t ever written one with an environmental theme. On the one hand, The Anacostia River was such a positive part of her childhood. On the other hand, her research revealed the long struggle over pollution and conservation of a river she hadn’t experienced since her youth, almost 50 years prior.
“I never thought of the river as needing anything at all,” Wyeth said. “The river was like a grown-up — always there. It took care of you.” And in her youth, the Anacostia River wasn’t polluted. Now, Wyeth and Lashley hope American Doll Climate Champion Evette Peeter will inspire a new generation of climate champions, too.
DEEPER DIVE: Washingtonian, AnacostiaAWS.org, American Girl