House ruins
(Photo credit: Wavian / Flickr)

As seas rise and weather becomes more extreme, insurance companies are raising premiums for some customers in vulnerable areas. But paradoxically …

Sulakshana: “While they’re acknowledging these impacts, they’re also fueling the climate crisis.”

Elana Sulakshana of the Rainforest Action Network says the industry provides insurance that protects fossil fuel projects, for example, pipelines and coal-fired power plants.

And their involvement does not end there. Many insurers also invest in fossil fuels.

Sulakshana: “These companies collect premiums and they put that money into the stock market. They invest it. And it’s estimated that they have more than $500 billion dollars invested in coal, oil, and gas companies. So it’s really a massive scale of investment in the fossil fuel industry as well.”

So the Rainforest Action Network is part of the Insure Our Future campaign. It calls on insurers to stop insuring or investing in coal or tar sands projects.

Sulakshana says the campaign is gaining support.

Sulakshana: “Cities, universities, foundations, nonprofits are increasingly saying to their insurers: are you investing in or insuring fossil fuels? We want to be working with a company that isn’t.'”

Reporting credit: Stephanie Manuzak/ChavoBart Digital Media.