"Utilities, Investors Face Risks From Growing Water Scarcity"

"Water and electric power utilities face growing financial risks from water scarcity, but the credit rating agencies that rate municipal bonds largely ignore the problem, leaving bond buyers missing some important information, says a new report by Ceres and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Water scarcity — especially in the Southeast, the Southwest and the West — will create risks for thousands of utilities that are managed by municipalities and counties, the report says. It looked at water scarcity risks in Dallas-Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Phoenix.

Investors who buy municipal bonds are 'blindly placing bets on which utilities are positioned to manage these growing risks,' the report said."

Renee Schoof reports for McClatchy Newspapers October 21.


"Is Unpriced Carbon The Next Subprime?" (National Journal)

"Water Scarcity a Bond Risk, Study Warns" (New York Times)

"Is Coal Power Headed for a Downsizing In US?" (Christian Science Monitor)

"Hidden Costs of Coal Generation" (Chicago Tribune)

"Global Economy Must Tally Environmental Costs -- Report" (Greenwire)

"U.N. Study Highlights Price Of Nature To Mankind" (Reuters)

"Australia's Pension Funds Lag on Carbon Risk -- Survey"

"Climate Change Could Be the Next Subprime Meltdown" (Financial Post, 2/13/08)

"Super Funds at the Mercy of Climate Change" (Sydney Morning Herald)

Source: McClatchy, 10/21/2010