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Extreme weather events are getting worse. The rise of flooding, drought, typhoon and wildfire incidents is linked to a rise in global temperature caused by human activity. The risks arising from climate change are recognized by supranational organizations, national governments and private enterprise as a significant threat to human life and to the economy.
In 2015,1 consensus was reached that climate change should be limited to a change of no more than an increase of 2ºC by the end of the century. Since 2015, there has also been a marked change in public awareness of climate change. With greater public awareness has come an appetite to hold both governments and businesses accountable for their contribution to the rise in temperatures. This accountability, we believe, will lead to increasing exposures for insurers, not just in terms of the policies underwritten but also in relation to the management of their business, with increasing regulatory requirements concerning climate related risk.
In this environment, we have written a guide on the legal issues that insurers face in the context of the changing environment. This guide is aimed at the directors and senior managers of insurance companies as well as those with responsibility for managing investment portfolios, underwriting, claims, risk management and legal and regulatory compliance.
We set out a view of the risks that insurance companies face, both in terms of the developing regulatory environment but also in terms of the identification of hidden exposure to climate risks and the changing claims environment.
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The modernisation of international trade fundamentally changed how companies do business. This has also changed, by necessity, how companies structure themselves to operate within this global environment.
© Norton Rose Fulbright LLP 2021