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Insurers should consider climate risks, says Lloyds of London

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Insurers Lloyd’s of London has urged the industry to take climate change risks into account by taking a longer-term view in order to avoid rising financial losses.

In a new report – Catastrophe Modelling & Climate Change – the organisation calls on the insurance industry to incorporate climate change into its models. It says that in recent years, firms have incurred “major losses as a result of extreme weather” and climate change effects could have implications for the accuracy of natural catastrophe models.

Lloyds added that considering climate change was becoming more important as scientific consensus around the effects is strengthening. It also pointed to the recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) – which said no nation would be left untouched – as evidence that insurers could soon be hit by “surprising or irreversible” pervasive impacts.

Trevor Maynard, leader of Lloyd’s exposure management and reinsurance team, commented, “The urgent need to mitigate carbon emissions remains as critical now as before.

“Catastrophe models calculate financial impact from potential events in the next year or so. Planners need to consider how the risk will change over the term of their projects.”

The research suggests that Europe will experience fewer storms in the future but that the frequency of very large storms will increase four-fold. It warns that insurers operating in big European economies, most notably France and Germany, could see their losses due to serve storms multiply.

In the UK, climate change is likely to mean more flooding, Lloyd’s said. Whilst winter rainfall in the UK does not appear to have changed significantly since records began, wet spells are falling in more intense periods. Forecasts predict that peak river flows will rise from 10% in 2015 to up to 30% by 2080. However, the report notes that investment and mitigation efforts can reduce flood risk.

The UK, along with the rest of world, is also at risk of rising sea levels. The report finds that under a high carbon scenario, in which reliance on fossil fuels continues to increase, there is a chance that sea levels could rise by 70cm. It adds that there are “credible, though unlikely, extreme scenarios” that would lead to sea levels rising by up to 1.9m.

The report concludes, “These climate change projection based approaches are required for those making long-term commitments, for examples, insuring or investing in infrastructure. The reduction of greenhouse gases remains an essential and urgent requirement to limit the risks and the inevitable costs of managing them.”

Photo: velma via Freeimages 

Further reading:

US states to require insurers to take part in climate risk survey 

Climate change is making parts of the world uninsurable 

Investing for a rainy day of biblical proportions 

Insurance, reinsurance and climate related risk management 

Insurance industry can help drive renewables, says Swiss Re report

Economy

A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon

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energy efficient homes

Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.

There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.

1. The Rise Of Smart Windows

When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.

If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.

2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs

If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.

Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.

3. Low-E Windows Taking Over

It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.

They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.

4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges

Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.

The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.

5. Improving Our Current LEDs

Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.

That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.

Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too

Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.

ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244

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Economy

IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”

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IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.

Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.

Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.

Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:

“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.

We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.

There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.

We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”

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