The average home mortgage is for 30 years…but we’re less than 12 years away from a climate catastrophe if we don’t act now. So WHY are insurance companies actually supporting fossil fuel projects that they’ll ultimately have to pay damages for? Talk about a bad investment!
The insurance industry is supposed to protect us from catastrophic damages – like the fires, flooding and storm damage caused by the climate crisis. But it turns out that insurance companies are actually part of the problem.
Well, fossil fuel companies need a few things to build a new project:
The insurance industry supports fossil fuel companies and projects with those first two by:
- Insuring fossil fuel projects: You can’t drive a car or buy a house without insurance. Without insurance, energy companies can’t build or operate destructive fossil fuel projects like pipelines, coal-fired power plants or fracking wells. Insurers can single handedly stop the expansion and operation of most fossil fuel projects just by refusing to insure them.
- Investing in fossil fuel companies: Insurance companies take your premium payments (including the money you pay for your car, home, and health insurance) and invest it in fossil fuels. It’s estimated that insurance companies have more than $450 billion invested in coal, oil, and gas companies.
The insurance industry understands the dangers of the climate crisis we’re in. They know this isn’t a future problem, because they’re paying for climate damages right now in communities across the country. But instead of protecting our communities, they’re increasing the costs of insurance or withdrawing coverage entirely from regions that are experiencing the worst climate impacts now, like the coasts of Florida and wildfire-ravaged counties in California.
And while these companies are abandoning the communities that need help the most, these companies are actively propping up the fossil fuel industry instead.
But the science is clear: We can’t afford any more investment in fossil fuels and we have less than 12 years left to prevent the worst impacts of a climate disaster. The transition to a clean energy future is underway, but our lives literally depends on scaling it up rapidly. Insurers have a key role to play in making that happen today.
The insurance industry literally has the power to change the world by withholding insurance from any new fossil fuel projects. It shouldn’t be hard to convince them: after all, it’s the insurance companies who will be left paying for the worst impacts of climate disasters.
But that’s where YOU come in.
We’re demanding that the nation’s top insurance companies phase out their support of fossil fuels, starting with coal and tar sands, two of the most carbon-intensive energy sources.
We’re calling these insurance companies to:
- Stop insuring coal and tar sands projects and companies;
- Divest from coal and tar sands companies; and
- Align all your business activities, including your underwriting and investments, with science-based targets that limit average global temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Join our global movement to move the insurance industry from away from deadly fossil fuels to a healthy, clean energy future.