Reinsurance News

Arch Insurance & AEGIS London latest to rule out insuring EACOP

29th November 2022 - Author: Kassandra Jimenez-Sanchez

Arch Capital Group Ltd and AEGIS London have become the latest (re)insurance companies to commit not to provide any coverage to the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project.

eacop-pipeline-mapThey join 19 other (re)insurers, including four of the world’s biggest (re)insurance companiesMunich Re, Swiss Re, Hannover Re, and SCOR – in refusing to supply coverage to the pipeline.

This decision was Arch Capital Group Ltd.’s response to ongoing pressure on their insurance business as it had been targeted by people across the world, from a range of groups, for over two months exposing the numerous climate, environmental, social risks and human rights violations associated with the project.

According to the announcement, thousands of emails had also been sent to staff asking them to raise the issue with senior management, hundreds of supporters of the #StopEACOP coalition and Coal Action Network, called Arch to recommend they rule out EACOP, and regular protests have been held at Arch’s offices.

A statement issued by the company follows sustained pressure on Lloyd’s of London managing agents to rule out underwriting EACOP, and days after Money Rebellion spilt fake oil outside Arch’s London offices.

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Patrick Palmer, Head Of Marketing and Communications at Arch Insurance International, confirmed, in an email to Money Rebellion and Coal Action Network : “Arch Capital Group Ltd. can confirm, on behalf of its underwriting operations, that it has not and will not issue any insurance policies covering the East African Crude Oil Pipeline.”

AEGIS London has also ruled out the controversial EACOP project. The company has stated that the project does not meet their Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) policy.

Both companies are members of the Lloyds of London insurance marketplace where it has been suggested that the companies behind EACOP (TotalEnergies and CNOOC) are seeking insurance.

The EACOP is a 1,443 kilometre crude oil pipeline planned to be built through the heart of Africa, which will displace communities, endanger wildlife, in both Uganda and Tanzania, and rip through numerous sensitive biodiversity hotspots.

#StopEACOP has been pushing for a number of the world’s largest re/insurance companies to pull back from the scheme.

The fake oil spill outside Arch’s offices was organised by Money Rebellion as part of a series of actions targeting ‘fossil fuel enablers’ across London, where different Extinction Rebellion groups targeted different organisations asking them to cut their ties with fossil fuels.

Rafela FitzHugh from Money Rebellion said: “We’re happy with Arch and AEGIS’ announcements, but people shouldn’t still have to push for change. With deadly weather destroying lives across the world, the insurance sector should be turning its back on all new fossil fuel projects now. Citizens resisting the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline in Uganda and Tanzania, are facing arrest and human rights abuses. We continue to stand with them and have written to Canopius Group, and Chaucer, to tell them to expect us on their door step soon if they don’t rule out insuring EACOP.”

A Canopius Group spokesperson has confirmed to Reinsurance News that they have no involvement, or plans to be involved with the insurance of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline.

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