Insurance Industry

Adani Beware: Coal Is on the Road to Becoming Completely Uninsurable

Read time: 6 mins
Coal mine
By John Quiggin, The University of Queensland

The announcement by Suncorp that it will no longer insure new thermal coal projects, along with a similar announcement by QBE Insurance a few months earlier, brings Australia into line with Europe where most major insurers have broken with coal.

U.S. firms have been a little slower to move, but Chubb announced a divestment policy in July, and Liberty has confirmed it will not insure Australia’s Adani project.

Other big firms such as America’s AIG are coming under increasing pressure.

Major Insurers to G20 Nations: Stop Wasting Time, Phase-Out Fossil Fuel Subsidies by 2020

Read time: 3 mins
Nodding donkey in sunset

Major global insurance companies are urging G20 leaders to commit to a specific timeline for rapidly phasing out fossil fuel subsidies – something they’ve repeatedly failed to do over the years despite numerous promises to end support for the industry.

In a joint statement issued ahead of the G20 conference in China this weekend, insurers with more than USD$1.2 trillion in assets under management warn that support for the production of coal, oil, and gas is at odds with the nations’ commitment to tackle climate change agreed in Paris last December.

The statement, signed by Aviva, Aegon NV, and MS Amlin, calls for governments to set “a clear timeline for the full and equitable phase-out by all G20 members of all fossil fuel subsidies by 2020.”

Bank of England Says Climate Change Research 'Absolutely Essential' After Attack From Climate Denier Lord Lawson

Read time: 2 mins

Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, hit back against climate denier Lord Nigel Lawson's accusation that the Bank had its priorities wrong by researching the impact of climate change in the insurance industry.

Speaking in the House of Lords' Economic Select Committee yesterday, Lawson said there were many issues in the banking industry, so “wouldn’t it be better if you focused your attention on those instead of engaging in green claptrap?”

Carney, however, robustly defended the Bank’s work, stating: “In the insurance business one of the top risks is climate change. Understanding those risks… is absolutely essential to discharge our responsibilities to oversee and supervise the third largest insurance market in the world.”

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