With dramatic news about rampant wildfires in many US states, mother nature drives home a clear message: in urban planning we need to be more aware of areas that are exposed to natural hazards. If we don't look or listen, we'll expose substantial values, and what is more, human lives, to several risk. Wildfires are just one example to illustrate the increasing loss burden that results from a specific natural hazard and that puts increasing pressure on the public sector in coping with the challenge.
Swiss Re and students at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International studies have teamed up to analyse wildfire risk and look into what can be done to "Fuel Resilience", as the report's title goes. The bad news is that public entities struggle increasingly with the financial burden that wildfire fighting entails. The good news is that there are pre-event risk transfer instruments available from private insurers and reinsurers that can support the public sector in managing wildfire - and related budget - risk. The study's analyses focuses on the situation in the US. But the findings are equally relevant for Canada and Australia.
Category: Climate/natural disasters: Disaster risk
Location: United States