Mitigating climate risk

The effects of climate change and global warming are already evident and shaking up our risk landscape: warmer average temperatures, rising sea levels, longer and more frequent heatwaves and more weather extremes. These phenomena are quickly becoming the new normal and profoundly impacting our way of life, our health and our natural environment. A most urgent question we need to ask is not only how to tackle climate change, but also how we can best adapt and avert the most damaging consequences – in short, how to mitigate climate risk.

Mitigating climate risk, workers nexxt to a sonar pannel farm (photo)

Our response

Swiss Re’s main response to this challenge is to make societies more resilient to the growing risks of climate change and natural hazards. We do this in a number of ways.

With our re/insurance solutions, we can help communities and businesses get back on their feet quickly after a disaster and prepare them for more frequent and severe climate impacts.

We also offer solutions that support the transition to more sustainable, low-carbon energy systems by reducing the risk associated with renewable energy projects and making them more attractive to investors with re/insurance backing.

And we promote sustainable practices in our own operations to improve good stewardship and long-term performance. We have adopted an investment practice for our assets to consider environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria in our investment decisions, among them climate-impacting industries. Limiting global warming is part of this effort, and we are reinforcing it by reducing our own fossil fuel footprint across our operations, investments and re/insurance offerings.

With the Top Topic Mitigating climate risk we want to connect the dots, and engage our audiences with our expertise and risk knowledge in this area.

Notable achievements in 2018

  • We hosted the third annual Oasis conference in Zurich (see selected conferences of 2018). Oasis is a powerful modelling framework to help build a cost-efficient “view of risk” by building proprietary models or by accessing multiple models from various providers via the marketplace of cat models. It is offered as an open source platform and is free of charge, reflecting the willingness of the re/insurance industry to join forces and control rising costs.
  • We launched a new product hub to better serve our corporate clients from the renewable energy industry. Corporate Solutions’ Renewable Energy Industry Solutions suite offers clients a holistic, one-stop solution that covers risks along the entire value chain of a typical renewable energy project.
  • We actively participated in the second Annual Insurance and Climate Risk conference in London and contributed to key sessions as discussants and panellists. The event gave a comprehensive overview of all the key issues that the industry currently defines as relevant to the topic of climate risk and reaffirmed our own strategy supported by the Top Topic Mitigating climate risk.