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Climate Changed: Corporate America Is Getting Ready to Monetize Climate Change

Storms, floods, drought and heat waves worry largest companies. Merck, Apple, Home Depot also see new revenue opportunities.

Bank of America Corp. worries flooded homeowners will default on their mortgages. The Walt Disney Co. is concerned its theme parks will get too hot for vacationers, while AT&T Inc. fears hurricanes and wildfires may knock out its cell towers.

The Coca-Cola Co. wonders if there will still be enough water to make Coke.

As the Trump administration rolls back rules meant to curb global warming, new disclosures show that the country’s largest companies are already bracing for its effects. The documents reveal how widely climate change is expected to cascade through the economy -- disrupting supply chains, disabling operations and driving away customers, but also offering new ways to make money.

The disclosures were collected by CDP, a U.K.-based nonprofit that asks companies to report their environmental impact, including the risks and opportunities they believe climate change presents for their businesses. More than 7,000 companies worldwide filed reports for 2018, including more than 1,800 from the U.S.

On Tuesday, CDP, formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project, released letter grades for those companies that measure “how aware they are about the issue, how they’re managing it, how they’re progressing toward targets,”said Caroline Barraclough, a CDP spokeswoman. Thirty U.S.-based companies got an “A” grade, the most of any country; they include Apple Inc., Johnson & Johnson and Home Depot Inc. Next on the list were Japan, with 25 top-scoring companies, and France with 22.

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