Inherent uncertainty means that every statement made in relation
to climate change risk must be caveated, but that is not an excuse
for inaction. In this thinkpiece, John Coomber (Chairman of
ClimateWise and former CEO of SwissRe) suggests three areas
worthy of thought for insurers and insurance brokers.
- Firstly, Coomber argues that climate change will lead to an
inexorable increase in property risk. Insurers should
therefore seek to engage with affected communities to provide
information, coverage and risk mitigation skills to a new customer
- Secondly, he argues that if we are to prevent risks from
becoming "unaffordable", society must avoid breaching irreversible
tipping points in the world's ecological balance.
- Thirdly, knowledge has always been the best basis for decision
making and insurers can contribute to this debate through their
loss modelling abilities.
- In conclusion, he prompts insurers to imagine the world in 30
years time and discusses the potential for technology to create
winning products to cope with climate change. As in all business
endeavour controlling risk will be key to the success of new
products. Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is one such example.
Coomber believes that insurers should selectively engage.
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