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Reinsurers express regret at Trump’s exit of the Paris Climate Agreement

2nd June 2017 - Author: Staff Writer

Reinsurance giants Swiss Re and Munich Re have added their voices to the growing international condemnation of Trump’s decision to exit the Paris Climate Agreement.

The Swiss reinsurer –  which has been researching climate change and its effects for the past 30 years – said; “we can say: it is a real threat.

“After having conducted 20 Economics of Climate Adaptation studies since 2009, (ranging from Maharashtra to Florida and New York City) we find that already today, annualized losses of 1-12% of GDP result from existing climate risk.”

Swiss Re stated that it very much regrets President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the historic climate accord, adding it regards the agreement as “a key enabler to adopt pre-emptive actions to combat climate change. Many countries, who have been signatories to the Paris Agreement, have drawn up their National Climate Plans to reach the target.”

As the largest ever global collaboration of 187 countries  – or 95% of all nations – the Paris Climate Agreement is a historic deal – a commitment to keep rising global temperatures below 2C pre-industrial levels and try to limit them further to 1.5C.

Pointing to the injustice of the President’s decision, Munich Re highlighted global warming will inflict the most suffering onto poor countries although these contribute the least greenhouse gasses, while the U.S. represents just 5% of the world’s population and is the second largest emitter of carbon dioxide.

Tony Kuczinski, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Munich Re, US, stated; “Our absence from such a commitment defers important leadership on this issue,” highlighting that mitigation and resiliency efforts are especially important in the U.S. which is heavily exposed to natural disasters.

“From both an economic and societal point of view, the costs of mitigating risk from climatic hazards are far less than rebuilding communities after an event.

“If the public and private sectors are to overcome the immense human and financial impact of such disasters, it is imperative to reduce their long-term societal and economic impact,” said Kuczinski.

Peter Hoeppe, Munich Re’s head of the geo risks research called Trump’s decision a “major blow”, adding “the remaining industrialised countries must now press ahead even more vigorously with the measures.

“Every country with high emissions needs to deliver, here in Europe as well.”

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