Please note: After several successful years, the Open Minds blog will be closing. For further details, please visit our FAQ

Currently showing: Climate/natural disasters > Disaster risk

08 May 13 07:23

Each year features new headlines about deadly and devastating catastrophes in different parts of the world with earthquakes in Japan, Chile, Haiti and New Zealand, flooding in Pakistan and China, hurricanes and droughts in the US, wildfires in Russia and Australia and winter storms across Europe. The latest example of a devastating natural catastrophe was "Sandy", a hurricane which hit large parts of the Caribbean Islands and the US and which is likely to cost at least USD 50 billion in terms of total damage.

January's World Economic Forum in Davos has shown the importance of resilience for societies. New forms of public-private partnerships between governments, international bodies as well as insurers and reinsurers can help developing countries absorb the financial consequences of catastrophic events and make them more resilient and contribute to solutions that close part of the gap between economic and insured losses. A systematic approach to planning for events before they happen is key to shoring up community resilience.

Reto Schnarwiler, head of global partnerships for Swiss Re, Americas and EMEA, says that a lack of insurance and the growing costs of disasters are hitting individuals and governments hard, and he explores how partnerships with insurers can help mitigate losses.

You can read Reto's article here: (you need to register to read it)

Reading this article I wondered what would be the perfect mix between disaster mitigation and prevention, e.g. through sturdier building, also from an economic perspective?

Category: Climate/natural disasters: Disaster risk, Resilience

1 Comment

ClimateGroup - 8 May 2013, 4:50 p.m.

We are at a critical crossroads now and these questions are more important than ever. By 2050 there are expected to be nine billion people on the planet with many of them at risk from climate related risks. Science tells us that to avoid the worst social and economic impacts we have to address climate change, working together to build powerful partnerships that can spur action at both government and business level. Great example is the Global Partnerships unit, where Swiss Re offers innovative solutions that help communities better cope with floods, droughts and severe storms, which will go a long way to helping them recover from extreme weather events and to prepare them for a future where these events will be more common.

If you would like to leave a comment, please, log in.