CISL’s Seega: Cross-industry collaboration “absolutely key” to solving puzzle of climate

The issue of climate change cannot be solved on its own, and it is “absolutely key” that (re)insurers collaborate with other industries to tackle this problem, Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)’s Nina Seega has warned.

Seega, who is CISL’s research director, discussed the role that ClimateWise and others are playing to enable industry collaboration to support the transition to a greener economy, expanding on new areas such as the impacts on nature as well as “nature-positive opportunities” within the sector.

Collaboration within the industry and across the banking, investment management and asset ownership sectors, together with public institutions and academia, is “absolutely key to solving this problem”, Seega noted.

“After all, none of us can solve climate change on our own,” Seega told The Insurer TV at RenaissanceRe’s recent Risk Mitigation Leadership Forum.

In September, CISL published its first piece on the “financial materiality of nature considerations into underwriting portfolios”.

Seega noted CISL is expanding its research into the opportunity side, asking more questions about what kind of “nature-positive opportunities” and innovation are available in the insurance industry.

Results of this research have shown “how quickly the industry can move when it puts its mind to it”, Seega noted.

Comparatively, movement in the nature space has been a lot quicker than in climate, with Seega observing some interesting instances emerging where the insurance industry is starting to share its expertise more widely across the whole financial sector.

In addition to speaking with The Insurer TV at the event, Seega also took part in a panel discussion on the roles regulation and policy can play in the transition to a green economy, looking at where “policy can be a carrot as well as a stick” and the different approaches taken across different geographies.

Seega highlighted the Inflation Reduction Act in the US as an interesting approach to helping make certain technologies more financially viable. She also noted that Europe is developing a de facto global standard on sustainability.

Seega echoed comments from RenaissanceRe’s Jeff Manson and Cathal Carr on there being much more to be done to advance progress in this field and that increasing the momentum in the industry is imperative.

She noted there is interesting innovation in the insurance of country risk, allowing finance to flow towards emerging markets, but highlighted the need to scale that – and quickly. Indeed, Seega said she was looking forward to COP27 to hear updates on what action has taken place following the target setting which took place at COP26 in 2021.

Seega is optimistic that the industry can be successful in solving both the climate and nature crises given the number of people working on the challenge.

In this five-minute video Seega discusses:

  • Innovation in the insurance industry on ways to allow finance to flow towards emerging markets in the country risk space
  • The roles that collaboration, innovation and technology have to play in solving the climate challenge
  • Global approaches such as the Inflation Reduction Act in the US as well as the fact that Europe is developing a de facto global standard on sustainability