The insurance industry is at the forefront of the fight against climate change. Insurers face more claims due to damage caused by extreme weather events. The industry must play a central role in both climate change mitigation and adaptation.
As providers of financial solutions, we have a relatively light ‘environmental footprint’ in terms of the resources we consume; but it is not negligible. The impact our business has on the environment largely derives from the energy we use in our offices and our business travel. We also generate waste from our operations and consume resources, such as paper and water.
Our operations, therefore, can have a negative environmental impact; but the consumption of resources also adds to our operating costs. We therefore seek to manage resource consumption to reduce our costs as well as our environmental impact.
In particular, we aim to reduce the amount of energy we use in our buildings and the amount of business travel we undertake. By doing this we are reducing our direct and indirect emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) and minimising our contribution to man-made climate change.
However, we also recognise that our business activities influence the consumption of resources and environmental impacts outside our direct control – in fact, these can be much greater than our own operational impacts. Accordingly we have been addressing environmental issues in the way we carry out repairs and settle claims; develop insurance products and services; and where we invest the insurance premium we receive.
The following pages contain information on how we are managing our environmental impacts and tackling climate change.
White Paper: Sustainability: opportunity or opportunity cost?
12 June 2013 |
The perception that corporate efforts to become more sustainable reduce the value of companies and of investors’ portfolios is entrenched, but is based on largely unfounded assumptions and only thin academic evidence.
In 2006, leading insurers set out to work together to respond to the myriad risks and opportunities of climate change, aiming to reduce the overall risks faced by economies and societies. The ClimateWise initiative was launched in 2007 to crystallise, and build on, that leadership.