Project Syndicate: Stop Insuring Climate Disaster

As alternative energies become more competitive, the transition from fossil fuels would go much faster if the insurance industry accounts for the challenges of climate change and does not give coal and other fossil fuels a free ride. “While insurance industry representatives declare their intent and passion to rein in climate change and ensure a livable planet, in the back rooms their agents are still busy working their financial magic to underwrite new coal-fired power stations, oil rigs, tar sands projects, gas pipelines, and other polluting projects,” reports Bill McKibben, environmental science professor. “Many of these projects would not be viable without the services provided by insurance companies around the world.” McKibben credits the insurance industry for leading among businesses to call for action on climate change. He lauds French insurer AXA for announcing “it will no longer provide underwriting services to companies that generate more than 50% of their turnover from coal” and calls for other insurers to follow suit. Society depends on insurers to assess and minimize the financial and non-financial losses from risk, and fossil fuels pose risk for health, property, agriculture and economies at large. – YaleGlobal

Project Syndicate: Stop Insuring Climate Disaster

McKibben lauds French insurer AXA for targeting climate-change risks and declining to underwrite services that rely on more than 50 percent coal in turnover
Bill McKibben
Thursday, May 11, 2017

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Bill McKibben, a scholar in environmental sciences at Middlebury College and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, is a co-founder of

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