Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Climate change arrives in Sweden

2011 is likely to go to history as the year that the New Climate started affecting Sweden. Not only has this Christmas been one of the warmest ever - insurance costs caused by extreme weather was up 18% since last year according to the local insurance industry. A spokesman for the insurers explains that climate change will mean more extreme weather, with increased prices for insurances as a result.
The Passing Storm, Saint-Ferréol - Cornelius Krieghoff

The insurance industry has for a long time been the great hope of many industrialists, including me. Not because an inherent goodness - this industry is probably as controlled by greed as any other. Which is what makes insurance companies interesting - they are set to lose a lot of money from more volatile weather, and have a strict vested interest in combating climate change.

It is nice to see the Swedish insurers out of the closet - hopefully they can lend some weight to environmentalists demands for more robust climate politics. I have a secret dream that they would actually use their power and refuse to insure companies that work against them - like oil drilling companies. BP would not exist today if Deepwater Horizon had not been insured. On the other hand it is probably a very bad idea to let private companies use political power.

Nonetheless, climate change is now not only a question for environmentalists. It is a new business reality that has officially arrived in Sweden.


Anonymous said...

It certainly does make you wonder what is going on. We can and no doubt will be plunged back into the freezer at some point but it will clarly be next year now.

Kind Regards

Tony Powell

Maladets! said...

In deed - no sign of winter in southern Sweden yet - and the warm weather is forecasted to continue the coming weeks.

A stark contrast to the last two cold winters.