The Insure Our Future network has asked the CEOs of 30 major insurance companies to stop offering insurance services for fossil fuels.
In an open letter addressed to major global insurers, which include AIG, Allianz, AXA, Chubb, Generali, Liberty Mutual, Lloyd’s of London, Munich Re, SCOR, Sinosure, SOMPO, Tokio Marine and Zurich, the network has raised six demands for the insurance industry. The network includes national and global organizations and social movements. The letter outlines insurers’ critical role in the climate crisis and concrete actions they must take if they are serious about supporting the global goal of limiting climate change to 1.5°C.
The six demands made include:
1. Immediately cease insuring new and expanded coal, oil, and gas projects.
2. Immediately stop insuring any new customers from the fossil fuel sector which are not aligned with a credible 1.5ºC pathway, and stop offering any insurance services which support the expansion of coal, oil and gas production at existing customers. Within two years, phase out all insurance services for existing fossil fuel company customers which are not aligned with such a pathway.
3. Immediately divest all assets, including assets managed for third parties, from coal, oil, and gas companies that are not aligned with a credible 1.5ºC pathway.
4. By July 2023, define and adopt binding targets for reducing your insured emissions which are transparent, comprehensive and aligned with a credible 1.5ºC pathway.
5. Immediately establish, and adopt as policy, robust due diligence and verification mechanisms to ensure clients fully respect and observe all human rights, including a requirement that they obtain and document the free, prior and informed consent of impacted indigenous peoples as articulated in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
6. Immediately bring stewardship activities, membership of trade associations and public positions as a shareholder and corporate citizen in line with a credible 1.5ºC pathway in a transparent way.
Some insurers have, however, said that they are engaging their energy sector customers in a dialogue about the net zero transition and that this can encourage them to transition faster than excluding them from their insurance and investment portfolios.
But according to the network major oil and gas producers show no signs of adopting credible net zero pathways and some have recently even walked back the weak commitments they have made in the past, despite their recent obscene record profits.