Is your business prepared to deal with climate change?

Two questions to ask to determine if your business has the capacity to be resilient to climate change.

2017 was a banner year.

Well, as far as catastrophic weather events incurring billion-dollar losses go.

According to a recent report, economic damages from weather-related disasters continue to climb towards and sometimes surpass record levels, with more than 800 major events worldwide cause an estimated $130 billion in losses in 2012 alone.

But while many companies are concerned about the cost of such events, they tend to plan for the future based on past trends. In the face of global climate change, 500-year and 1,000-year flood events are becoming more like 10-20-year events.

At a recent event hosted by The Risk Institute, climate researchers from The Ohio State University and industry leader, FM Global, shared their insights into how businesses can do more to mitigate and adapt to our changing climate.

Predicting the severity of climate change on our planet is tricky business, and there’s a lot of variation between scientists as to how bad it’s really going to get over the next 50-100 years, but there is a consensus that it’s going to be pretty bad, any way you slice it.

By 2100, the world’s temperature could increase by 4-6 degrees, which when taken at face-value doesn’t seem like a lot, but David Bromwich, a researcher at the Byrd Polar and Climate Research at The Ohio State University, put it in perspective saying, “During the last ice age when most of America, Europe and Russia were covered by massive ice sheets, the global temperature had decreased by about 4 degrees.”

So yes, 4 degrees can make a huge difference, so what do business need to do in order to prepare?

According to Lou Gritzo, Vice President of Research at FM Global, in order for a business to prepare for climate change it comes down to a couple key questions.

  1. How much are you willing to invest in a given climate change scenario?
  2. How certain are you that you’ve picked the most likely scenario?

A company’s answers to those questions will likely determine their resiliency to climate change and its impacts on their business.

The Risk Institute will dive into the potential answers to those questions at our next session Natural Catastrophic Losses & Resilience on April 12, 2018 from 9am-1pm. Visit our website to register.

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