Climate Change Red Alert – a wake-up call to the world

Published on Thu, 12/08/2021 - 09:16

The global focus on responding to the pandemic and the scientific and societal progress in developing and deploying vaccines, has been extraordinary. And it should come as no surprise that there are now calls for a shift and new ways of doing business in the post-Covid world. The lessons we have all learned should not be lost.

Just imagine if that same unified recognition of the pandemic challenge and the purpose and amazing collaboration by society and business was used in the response to the climate crisis staring us in the face. Why should it take threats of scrutiny and ESG reporting to make us sit up and pay attention?

On Monday 9 August the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released the first instalment of their sixth assessment report*.

The report addresses the “most up-to-date physical understanding of the climate system and climate change, bringing together the latest advances in climate science, and combining multiple lines of evidence from paleoclimate, observations, process understanding, and global and regional climate simulations”.

A red alert is the final stage of alert in which enemy attack appears imminent and broadly is a  state of alert brought on by impending danger.

The report found all regions of the world are already experiencing the impacts of climate change, and its warming projections range from ‘scary to unimaginable’. This is a Red Alert. Local governments, national and international policymakers, community groups, insurance companies and brokers, and you and me need to know some aspects of the IPCC’s findings to understand what the future might look like and what we can do about it.

Low-likelihood outcomes, such as ice sheet collapse, abrupt ocean circulation changes, some compound extreme events and warming substantially larger than the assessed very likely range of future warming cannot be ruled out and are part of risk assessment – and we all know about risk, don’t we?

Airmic will do its part in keeping climate change at the top of our agenda and we look forward to collaborating with our members and partners on what we can all do to make a difference, and not just talk about it.

Airmic pledge to promote and support actions taken by our members and the insurance industry focused on making a purposeful and measured commitment to making a difference.

* Disclaimer: The Summary for Policymakers (SPM) is the approved version from the 14th session of Working Group I and 54th Session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and remains subject to final copy-editing and layout.