Last Thursday, 18th May, Coal Action Network protested outside of Lloyd’s of London, for their role in insuring the expansion of the Trans Mountain Pipeline (TMX) and the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP).
We built a fake pipeline outside Lloyds of London. Through previous actions outside Lloyds of London, we know that there are many sympathetic staff who do not support their workplace insuring the expansion of the Trans Mountain Pipeline and the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline. Therefore we are asking staff to sign an open letter to John Neal, CEO of Lloyds of London. The letter demands that he make a clear statement that no Lloyd’s syndicate shall renew or provide insurance for TMX or EACOP, and implement a policy to stop the underwriting of fossil fuel expansion and other carbon-intensive projects by all members of the Lloyd’s marketplace.
We want to shed light onto Lloyd’s of London's appalling environmental record, and the colonialist practices from which Lloyd’s of London grew. From the insurance of slave ships, to the insurance of climate-destroying projects that dispossess indigenous peoples of their land, Lloyd’s of London have blood on their hands.
The TMX pipeline carries diluted bitumen, which is a fossil fuel and the expansion of it leads to further climate catastrophe for local communities and globally. The proposed expansion would transport an additional 590,000 barrels of oil daily, tripling its current capacity.
An increase of this scale cannot be justified at a time when leading scientists have made it clear that there is no room for any additional fossil fuel infrastructure, nor considering the devastating impacts of tar sands specifically. To meet the urgency of the climate crisis, we need to unite together and take action to increase the pressure like never before. In the run-up to Lloyd’s of London’s AGM we have been asked to help indigenous Land Defenders in Canada to cut off insurance to the Trans Mountain Pipeline.
“The Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline threatens my nation and our sacred Sleilwaut (Burrard) inlet; our place of creation. The pipeline poisons our clam beds and violates the rights of many Indigenous communities along its length and at its source. Expanding tar sands extraction and increasing the capacity of the Trans Mountain pipeline network is nothing less than climate destruction,” said Kayah George of Tsleil-Waututh Nation and Tulalip Tribes. “The Lloyd's marketplace and syndicates like Arch urgently need to get the message: it’s time to move away from dirty fossil fuels and instead uplift Indigenous rights, a healthy environment, and a stable climate.”
Campaigning efforts to stop the insurance of the TMX pipeline in 2020 led to three insurance companies cutting ties with the pipeline: Zurich (the lead insurer), Munich Re, and Talanx. We are hoping to build on this momentum to drive away more insurers this year. Already this year specialty insurance and reinsurance firms Aspen Insurance and Arch Insurance have confirmed that they do not plan to renew their insurance of the Trans Mountain Tar Sands Oil Pipeline project when its current insurance policy expires this summer.
The confirmation sees 18 insurance companies that have either dropped Trans Mountain or vowed to rule out insuring the Trans Mountain Expansion Project as climate advocates call for the insurance industry to shore up climate strategies. Lloyd’s of London must follow suit.
Lloyd’s of London published its 2021 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report two days ahead of its Annual General Meeting on May 19.
Lloyd’s second ESG report is a document almost completely lacking in substance which does more to obscure the climate destroying actions of its members than to shed light on how it intends to reach its often stated net-zero by 2050 ambition. It has almost no information on concrete climate action and raises many serious questions about Lloyd’s.
Most notably, Lloyd’s second ESG report says nothing about the outcomes of the climate commitments it made in its first ESG report released at the end of 2020. Previously, Lloyd’s stated it was asking its managing agents to not provide any new cover for coal-fired plants, coal mines, oil sands and Arctic energy exploration from 1st January 2022. Yet, its current report fails to report on whether or not its members are fulfilling this commitment.
Whilst Lloyd’s ESG report doesn’t tell us, we already know from other sources that not all members of Lloyd’s market have stopped providing new insurance cover for new coal projects.
For example, a recent public report by London based insurance broker Alesco, noted that while many Lloyd’s members have adopted the policy, others continue to accept new coal business.
Why has Lloyd’s, which knows these facts, not been open or honest about them in this report? Which Lloyd’s members are ignoring Lloyd’s stated ambitions? What action is Lloyd’s taking to bring those members into line? What value do Lloyd’s stated climate ambitions and targets have when they are so plainly ignored by some of its members with no consequence?
Instead of addressing these obvious questions Lloyd’s is trying to cover up its failure to deliver on its climate commitments. In other words, Lloyd’s 2021 ESG report is greenwash.
Whilst avoiding mention of its failure to have all members exclude the very worst fossil fuel projects, this report goes much further in the wrong direction. Lloyd’s doubles-down on requiring its members to continue to insure what it terms the “harder-to-abate sectors”, by which it presumably means it plans to adopt no restrictions on new oil and gas exploration. Lloyd’s completely ignores the IPCC, the IEA and others which make clear that no new oil and gas projects are compatible with staying within 1.5C global warming, and that existing production needs to be phased down.
One example of concrete climate action Lloyd’s trumpets is appointing its first Sustainability Director. The ESG report fails to mention that Lloyd’s management gave the role to one of its Senior Public Relations Officers, who had no previous sustainability-related experience. Is that an example of bringing in a great communicator to an important new priority role? Or a classic example of treating ESG as more of a public relations exercise than a substantive issue? What is clear is that the quantity and quality of largely substance free public relations materials from Lloyd’s about sustainability has increased significantly in the last 12 months.
Lloyd’s Council Chair Bruce Carnegie-Brown and its CEO John Neal sign off the report saying:
“We hope this report equips you with a helpful and comprehensive summary of our ESG activity – and we look forward to working with you to build the braver world it imagines.”
In a climate crisis that presents an existential threat to life on earth, Lloyd’s is stuck in its PR bubble talking about sharing risks to create a braver world, when in reality its members provide the insurance cover for, and invest in, climate and human-rights destroying fossil fuel projects and companies.
Lloyd’s new ESG report exemplifies many of the worst aspects of corporate greenwashing. Saying it is committed to net-zero by 2050, but not having detailed targets and not enforcing the targets it does express is not a climate science aligned policy, it is greenwash. Lloyd’s Council, led by its Chairman Bruce Carnegie-Brown, needs to start taking genuine climate action by ensuring Lloyd’s members stop insuring and investing in new fossil fuels and phase out existing investments and insurance in-line with climate science. Nothing less will do.
Finally, there are a few words in the report that I do agree with:
Rebekah Clement Lloyd’s new Sustainability Director: “The work is nowhere near done…”
David Sansom Lloyd’s Chief Risk officer: “We have much more to do…”
Alesco Energy Update 2022. Page 21: “1 January 2022 saw the introduction of the new Lloyd’s directive as regards to coal; with the initially proposed stance being that no new coal business was to be underwritten from that date. However, in light of subsequent discussions between various parties, there has been a subtle change of emphasis with each syndicate now having a more individual responsibility towards their attitude to the new coal business. Many have chosen to remain with the existing policy of not putting any new coal accounts onto their books; but others have adopted a policy of accepting new business where the client can demonstrate a clear approach to working towards an orderly transition to renewable energy”.
Lloyd’s of London member Arch Insurance has committed to no longer insure the Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline after its current insurance policy expires this summer. Arch joins seventeen insurance companies, including fellow Lloyd’s syndicate Aspen most recently, that have dropped Trans Mountain or vowed not to insure the Trans Mountain Expansion Project.
Amid pressure from activists to break ties with the tar sands pipeline expansion, in an email to Coal Action Network, a spokesperson for Arch stated:
“We can confirm that Arch Capital Group Ltd, on behalf of its underwriting operations, will not issue any future insurance policies covering the Trans Mountain Pipeline.”
Trans Mountain experienced firsthand the impacts of climate chaos in 2021. Following historic wildfires in the summer, November brought extreme flooding and mudslides that shut down the existing line for three weeks. This resulted in over two months of lower capacity oil flow.
More than 18,000 people were displaced from their homes in the climate catastrophe.
Trans Mountain pipeline expansion faces severe flooding and river crossing risks which should make insurers run a mile.
Equipment and generators were submerged in the flooded Coquihalla River; then the storms of November 2021 hit, adding half a billion dollars to the project cost.
Despite this, TMX continues to operate recklessly in flood-risk zones according to Ian Stephe of the WaterWealth Project :
"The company is recklessly setting the stage for further problems at the Vedder River crossing in Chilliwack where the river overflowed dikes. The company filed a geotechnical report that was withheld during route approval hearings and that only finds this major river crossing feasible as planned based on assumptions that were outdated when the report was written and that remain unmet. As a community member with a long history on this project, I am concerned about the impacts from this pipeline on waterways, and insurers should be too."
Charlene Aleck of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation Sacred Trust Initiative raised the question; who will fund a project this as risky as TMX?
"As the 18th insurer to rule out Trans Mountain, Arch is confirming that fossil fuel projects without Free Prior and Informed consent are a material risk. Trans Mountain's steps to keep their insurers secret will not stop the momentum towards a safer and more just world. Trans Mountain is currently looking for more financing to continue construction, but who will fund such a risky project?"
According to the last insurance certificate with company names listed, Lloyd’s syndicates collectively were the biggest insurer for Trans Mountain. Chubb and Zurich were the biggest individual insurers listed providing coverage, but since then, both Chubb and Zurich have cut ties, making Lloyd’s a remaining top target.
By refusing to rule out Trans Mountain across its marketplace, Lloyd’s of London is failing its members and the millions of people whose lives are being destroyed by climate change. With their understanding of risk, why hasn't the industry taken action decades ago?
With Arch and Aspen cutting ties, Beazley and CNA Hardy are the prime targets for public pressure.
This could all be avoided if Lloyd’s ended insurance for fossil fuels across its marketplace.
Lloyd’s of London has increasingly been the target of protests in the UK for its connection to the pipeline in the lead up to Lloyd’s of London actual Annual General Meeting on May 19. Resistance has included 60 people from Extinction Rebellion blocking the entrances at their iconic headquarters last month and a climate memorial led by Pacific Islanders and youth strikers from climate change-affected communities.
Delayed by over a decade of powerful Indigenous-led resistance, court cases, corporate campaigning, construction mishaps, and cost overruns, TMX is on it's knees. Matt Reml, (Lakota) Mazaska Talks says:
“Thanks to the effort of frontline Indigenous communities and grassroots activists, Lloyd’s of London syndicate Arch Insurance joins a growing list of insurance companies committing to no longer providing insurance for the Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline. This is a victory for Indigenous rights, environmental and climate justice. It is time for the Trudeau administration to end the Trans Mountain pipeline."
The projected cost of the Trans Mountain expansion project has quadrupled, according to recent numbers from the Canadian Ministry of Finance. The current price tag is approximately CA$21.4 billion, and the federal government pledged that it would not provide any additional funding. This leaves the budget $8.8 billion CAD short, demonstrating overwhelming opposition and challenges to building oil and gas pipelines.
Lloyd’s of London member Aspen Insurance has pledged to cut ties with the Trans Mountain (TMX) tar sands pipeline after its current insurance policy expires in summer 2022.
In an email to Coal Action Network, a spokesperson for Aspen stated:
“As a matter of corporate policy, Aspen does not comment on the specifics of any application for insurance we receive, any insurance or reinsurance contract we underwrite, or any claim we pay, however, we can confirm that we do not plan to renew the Trans Mountain Tar Sands Oil Pipeline project.”
Front-line community leaders supported the move. Charlene Aleck of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation Sacred Trust Initiative said:
“Aspen is joining insurance industry leaders in recognizing that fossil fuel infrastructure projects that don’t have Free Prior and Informed Consent are a material risk. It’s time for the rest of the Lloyd’s syndicates and the whole insurance sector to follow suit before the climate crisis gets worse”
A growing number of insurers have recognized the massive risks of the 69-year-old pipeline. The project would increase emissions equivalent to 2.2 million cars and has been delayed for years in the face of Indigenous-led resistance.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the International Energy Agency reports have made it clear. Any new fossil fuel infrastructure is incompatible with global climate goals of limiting temperature increases to below 1.5 degrees C. This includes the Trans Mountain pipeline.
Lloyd’s of London has been the target of a range of protests around the Trans Mountain pipeline. 60 people from Extinction Rebellion blocked the entrances at their iconic headquarters last week. A climate memorial was led by Pacific Islanders and youth strikers from climate change-affected communities.
Since this campaign began, we've seen insurers at Lloyd’s of London come under increasing pressure to cut ties with Trans Mountain. Aspen is listening, but Lloyd’s syndicates like Arch and Beazley must follow suit. We need a step change across the whole Lloyd’s marketplace.
We are calling for leadership that mandates all insurers in their marketplace to end underwriting of new fossil fuel projects. While Lloyd’s CEO John Neal blocks meaningful climate action, we expect to see ongoing protests on Lloyd’s doorstep.
In February 2021, the Canadian-owned Trans Mountain corporation petitioned the Canada Energy Regulator to keep the names of its insurance backers secret. It stated that it had “observed increasing reluctance from insurance companies to offer insurance coverage for the Pipeline and to do so at a reasonable price.”
This shows that the tar sands exclusion policies increasingly adopted by insurers are having a tangible impact on the price and availability of insurance for the sector.
According to recent numbers from the Canadian Ministry of Finance, the projected cost of twinning the Trans Mountain pipeline has nearly tripled. The latest figures show that the current price tag is approximately CA$21.4 billion, and the federal government pledged that it would not give any more money to the pipeline. Elana Sulakshana, Senior Energy Finance Campaigner at Rainforest Action Network said:
“This announcement from Aspen makes clear that the Trans Mountain pipeline network is facing serious risks that financial institutions do not want to support: lack of consent from Indigenous communities, decaying infrastructure, mounting costs, and a massive carbon footprint."
Aspen needs to clarify that its commitment rules out all parts of the existing Trans Mountain pipeline and the expansion project in the future.
It's time for TMX's other insurers to rule out continued support for the project and the tar sands sector. This includes Energy Insurance Limited, Liberty Mutual, Lloyd’s of London and syndicates, Starr, Stewart Specialty Risk Underwriting, and W.R. Berkley.
Adani's mines are supported by the UK's finance industry - providing insurance and funding for it's devastating coal mines in Australia, India and beyond. For the past year, Coal Action Network has supported calls for Lloyd's of London to stop insuring Adani. While many companies have pulled out, Lloyd's continue to refuse to rule out underwriting the Adani mine.
Across India, Adani is facingfor its 800% coal expansion, land grabs, and pollution, including from the Indian tribal Adivasi people who are resisting coal projects which threaten ancestral lands in the Hasdeo forests.
Now, Adani is looking to greenwash its name throughThis is a blatant attempt to trick the British public and gain further support from bankers and insurance executive. Adani is looking to expand its corporate empire and is in desperate need of private finance to do so. We can all be part of cutting that off.
We're looking for people to join us on Twitter and Facebook to combat the lies and demand UK institutions help #StopAdani instead of enabling climate breakdown. Across the world, people are standing up to Adani and their backers. By signing up, you'll get text messages from us with more information on how you can get involved with on social media.
Meeting reveals Neal’s failure to understand the need to stop insuring fossil fuel expansion
On February 16, Insure Our Future network members challenged John Neal, CEO of Lloyd’s of London, on the insurer’s fossil fuel policies and actions in a long awaited, but ultimately very disappointing, on-the-record meeting at Lloyd’s Lime Street headquarters.
The meeting between Neal, Lindsay Keenan, European Coordinator of Insure Our Future, and Mia Watanabe, UK Campaigner at Market Forces, revealed major problems with how Lloyd’s, and in particular its CEO, is addressing the climate crisis. The meeting started with Neal accepting a letter with 137,400 signatures on behalf of SumOfUs, an Insure Our Future network member. The letter demanded Lloyd’s stop supporting new and expansionary coal, oil and gas projects, including the East African Crude Oil Pipeline, Trans Mountain pipeline, Adani Carmichael coal mine, and oil drilling by the Bahamas Petroleum Company.
In stark contrast to statements made by Lloyd’s Council Chairman, Bruce Carnegie Brown, and what is clearly written in Lloyd’s December 2020 ESG report, Neal stated that in his view Lloyd’s ESG policy was nothing more than a “‘provocative discussion document”.
Revealingly, Neal claimed that, following the publication of the report, he had been contacted and lobbied by regulators, corporations, and state and national officials from around the world who said they were against the ESG policy and concerned about its ambitions. He confirmed that Lloyd’s had subsequently informed its members the ESG commitments were non-mandatory guidelines.
Despite lending a sympathetic ear to industry stakeholders, Neal was unequivocal in stating that he did not see it as his role to meet with representatives of communities impacted by the fossil fuel projects that Lloyd’s insures or invests in.
While professing to respect climate science and the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) 2021 report, Neal appeared to not understand nor accept the report’s key finding that there are no new coal mines or oil and gas fields approved for development in a Net Zero by 2050 pathway. Under Neal, Lloyd’s has no plan to align its policies with the IEA findings.
“It is a serious problem that John Neal has not been well enough briefed, or is just personally sceptical, about climate science and the findings of the International Energy Agency. An ESG policy touted by Carnegie-Brown as a ‘plan for becoming a truly sustainable insurance market’ has, under John Neal, become nothing more than a ‘discussion document’ that syndicates can take or leave as they see fit. It is abundantly clear that John Neal prioritises profits at the cost of people and planet, and that under his leadership Lloyd’s policies fail to match its climate rhetoric,” said Lindsay Keenan, European Coordinator of Insure Our Future.
Neal further exposed his disregard for climate action by failing to make a clear commitment that Lloyd’s members would not insure the East African Crude Oil Pipeline and saying Lloyd’s has no current plans to adopt an exclusion policy for oil and gas expansion.
On the Adani Carmichael coal project in Australia, a source of significant controversy for Lloyd’s over the last two years, Neal said that “to the best of my knowledge” the project is no longer insured in the Lloyd’s market. While Neal encouraged syndicates not to underwrite Adani, he refused to give a clear commitment on its status inside Lloyd’s, both now and in the future.
“The #StopAdani campaign has done the work John Neal should have done, and convinced the vast majority of its insurers to commit to never insuring the disastrous Adani Carmichael thermal coal project. Now, Neal needs to come clean and officially clarify if the Lloyd’s market remains exposed to Adani, and make the promise to not insure the climate-wrecking project in the future. If Lloyd’s cannot take this basic step, then its ESG policies have failed their most simple test and Adani Carmichael will continue to be a stain on its reputation,” said Mia Watanabe, UK Campaigner at Market Forces
Lloyd’s stated commitment to transparency is contradicted by its actions. Neal said Lloyd’s expects its members to have robust net-zero ESG plans, but will not ask them to publish those policies. He confirmed that data on insured emissions will be collected at syndicate level, but published only as obscure market wide data. Neal tried to justify the lack of transparency by saying he didn’t want to put additional pressure on Lloyd’s members.
Neal stated many times in the meeting that UK competition law prevents him from mandating marketwide action. Previously, Lloyd’s excuse was that it didn’t have the power to require the implementation of its ESG policy, which was proved false by its own bylaws. Neal now points to competition law as the barrier preventing Lloyd’s from mandating its members stop insuring and investing in specific fossil fuel sectors.
Keenan added, “Neal has no intention of taking marketwide action and is using competition law as his latest excuse. However, it does raise a significant question that must be asked of the UK Competition and Markets Authority regarding whether there is any legal barrier to coordinated industry action to meet climate targets.”
The meeting concluded with Keenan’s challenge for Neal to invite Insure our Future members, climate scientists and impacted communities to meet with Lloyd’s Council and ESG committee, and for Neal to join him in a public debate to clarify and discuss Lloyd’s policies. Neal said he would consider each of these, and appeared to mean it.
Join our creative actions on 29th October 2021 in either:
Time: From 0900 - 1100
Address: Lloyd's of London HQ, 1 Lime St, London, United Kingdom EC3M 7HA
Nearest tube station: Bank
Time: From 1500 - 1700
Address: Rotterdam House,116 Quayside, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom NE1 3DY
Join us in either London or Newcastle for a memorial to bring to life the memories of every person harmed by the injustices of the climate crisis, as well as celebrate their fierce resistance to it.
In London this will be outside Lloyds of London, a company (not related to Lloyds bank) that profits from providing insurance to climate wrecking projects, without which they wouldn’t be able to go ahead. You’ll hear from Pacific Island Warriors, Silver Town Tunnel local campaigners, and others that are suffering climate change impacts and fighting climate wrecking projects.
In Newcastle, we will be outside the offices of Chubb, one of Lloyd of London's 'syndicates', who are also involved in the insurance of fossil fuel projects, such as the Adani coal mine. We will hear from campaigners opposing the opening of the West Cumbria coal mine, as well as from the Campaign to Protect Pont Valley, who will talk about resistance, loss, and what it means to live with a coal mine on their doorstep
Anyone is welcome to bring their own memorial-themed materials to this action, and here’s a video on how to do that:
The climate crisis is harming the poorest and least responsible of us first and worst. Five million people will die this year due to fossil fuels globally, only 40,000 of those in the UK. The blame for this falls squarely at the feet of governments, corporations and banks that continue to profit from death. As people globally face extreme and destructive weather, we will come together to demand care & repair with them.
The Lloyd’s of London insurance market, one of the world's largest insurers of fossil fuel projects. We want to shed light onto Lloyd’s of London's appalling environmental record, and the colonialist practices from which Lloyd’s grew. From the insurance of slave ships, to the insurance of climate-destroying projects that dispossess indigenous peoples of their land, Lloyd’s have blood on their hands.
This action has two purposes. Firstly, it's about reaching people we wouldn't normally, informing them about the role insurers are playing in the climate-destroying Adani coal mine. Secondly, it's about delivering a blow to the public image of these companies by bringing their star ratings crashing down.
In order to review somewhere on Google, you will need a Google account. It’s free and easy; Google has a support page on how to do so here, but get in touch if you’d like some extra help.
Once you’ve finished your Google reviews, amplify them by sharing them - with friends, family, us, or on social media.
Our main target for this action is the Lloyd's of London in London. It currently has a a 4.6 star rating, and 553 review - bringing this rating down isn't going to be easy. If you're going to only review one place - make it this one. If we all work together, we'll be able to see that rating start to get lower and lower.
As you can only add one review per location on Google, we've made a short list of other targets. Done with these and want to keep going? Find your own targets by going on different websites insurers who haven't ruled out underwriting Adani. Here, they'll list their offices in other cities.
|Lloyd’s of London||London||https://goo.gl/maps/bNCQ7dPjwRu8nABA9||4.6 stars (553 reviews)|
|Lloyd’s of London||Australia||https://goo.gl/maps/s8C65NoLCi93VZ9QA||2.0 stars (4 reviews)|
|Hamilton||London||https://goo.gl/maps/4woxhaZ3sMk9PoJ19||3.4 stars (5 reviews)|
|Hamilton||Bermuda||https://goo.gl/maps/1b7Q41tevPxrFYLv5||1.0 starts (1 review)|
|Convex||London||https://g.page/Convexin?share||5.0 stars (2 reviews)|
As they reopened after lockdown, Lloyd's of London and companies involved in their marketplace opened their offices to find local people demanding that they rule out insuring the West Cumbria and Adani coal mines immediately.
It was a great day with actions in 13 locations across the UK. This was the first time that the regional offices of insurance companies have faced coordinated action demanding action on climate change. We stood in solidarity with the communities campaigning gainst the Adani and West Cumbria coal mines.
Helen from Gateshead said: We all have a responsibility to care for our planet and that’s why we’re here today. To show that we need to say no to fossil fuels, to turn our backs on coal. And that’s why we’re calling on Lloyd’s of London to stop insuring all coal mines around the world now.
Zoe, a 50 year old Mum and small business owner from Warrington said “I took part in this local action to be part of giving a bigger national message to Lloyd’s of London, that in 2021 with the planet on fire, it is no longer OK to be insuring fossil fuel projects. Insurance seems such a dry and mundane thing, but when you realise it is crucial to any coal, oil or gas extraction going ahead, then you realise what power these people have. They can literally decide to turn off the emissions tap if they wished to! That means they hold the power of life or death – over many millions, if not billions of people, in the keystrokes of their keyboard, or the flurry of their pen. Imagine having that much potential to do the right thing – they could literally be the world’s greatest climate heros if they chose to be. What a legacy for them to leave their kids…”
Chris from Manchester said "We think that insurance companies , by the nature of their business about future risks, have the resources and motivation to understand the practical implications of the climate emergency and the role fossil fuels play in causing and worsening that emergency. But we don't think they are being open about those risks. We need them to Tell the Truth and my being here demonstrating in Manchester, is part of holding them to account"
We got some great coverage in the insurance press with this journalist calling it how it is!
Lloyd’s response to these protests has resembled a rabbit caught in the headlights. These are sophisticated, well-informed groups armed with data and will not back-off. They will play a part in COP26 so Lloyd’s needs start responding with action.
— David Worsfold (@DavidWorsfold) May 24, 2021
Thanks to everyone who took action on the campaign so far, we are pushing the insurance industry out of coal! This week Adani's biggest contractor revealed it couldn't find an insurance provider that would cover the project
The action we are taking is making a massive difference to keeping the coal in the ground and protecting local communities from mining impacts.
A key to these massive victories has been keeping constant pressure up on the insurance industry. Help keep up the pressure by writing to Lloyd's, and it's 10 biggest insurers to demand they rule out the West Cumbria mine. If you've written before, keep on writing till they rule out the mine.
Thanks again for all your brilliant support,
What is the Lloyd’s of London?
Firstly, it’s nothing at all to do with Lloyd’s PLC, the bank – they’re not great either, but that’s another story.
Lloyd’s of London is a large insurance corporation with an HQ in London but trade insurance globally. In its own words, Lloyd’s of London “oversees and supports the Lloyd’s market, ensuring it operates efficiently and retains its reputation as the market of choice for specialist insurance and reinsurance risk.” You can watch Lloyd’s of London’s very corporate video explaining what they do.
What is “Lloyd’s marketplace”?
Insurance companies use Lloyd’s of London’s marketplace much like sellers use eBay’s website. Just as eBay supports bidding between buyers and sellers, so does Lloyd’s of London, employing over 200 brokers to match insurance customers with insurance companies. And just like eBay, Lloyd’s of London offers some form of guarantee for insurance bought via their marketplace, encouraging trades through to be made through it.
What is Lloyd’s of London's connection to Adani and West Cumbria coal mines, and fossil fuels
Lloyd’s of London marketplace is in the top 4 for insuring climate-wrecking fossil fuel projects around the world. Lloyd’s of London’s marketplace is particularly attractive to large fossil fuel projects as Lloyd’s has a reputation for getting high-risk projects insured that other insurance companies won’t touch. One way it does this is by splitting an insurance policy, and spreading the risk, between insurance companies using their marketplace. This amounts to an insurance for climate chaos as it’s only with insurance that companies can take the financial risks to dig new coal mines, build new tar sand pipelines, and explore new gas and oil fields.
Lloyd’s of London has refused to rule out allowing Adani’s Carmichael coal mine in Australia or the West Cumbria coal mine in the UK to obtain insurance via their marketplace. If Adani’s Carmichael coal mine gets insurance and goes ahead, it would open up one of the world’s biggest coal deposits contributing to a climate catastrophe.
What is Lloyd’s of London doing to prevent their contribution to climate change?
Not much, and definitely not enough.
Lloyd’s of London have only committed to a policy of greenwash that is incompatible with our climate crisis, continuing to insure risky projects that no one else will touch. So far Lloyd’s of London has committed to asking insurers operating in their marketplace to stop insuring tar sands, thermal coal mines, and Arctic exploration, phasing this out by 2022. But ‘reinsurance’ for these worst offenders is allowed up until 2030.
This also leaves a huge range of climate-wrecking projects free to continue insuring their risk via Lloyd’s of London marketplace with no policy at all to discourage it. In practice, this means the planned West Cumbria mine could be insured via Lloyd’s of London marketplace as it intends to mine ‘coking coal’, not ‘thermal coal’, although both are eventually burned, producing similar emissions.
What more could Lloyd’s of London marketplace do to prevent their contribution to climate change?
Lloyd’s of London could most simply ban all fossil fuel insurance trading via their marketplace. Their own statement clearly indicates this would be possible; “Lloyd’s publishes minimum standards and monitors compliance with those minimum standards. Lloyd’s by-laws also set out a number of rules with which market participants are required to comply”.
Fossil fuel projects only amount to around 5% of Lloyd’s of London’s marketplace insurance trades, so the company would still have a future without selling out ours.
What would be the impact if Lloyd’s of London ruled out fossil fuel insurance?
Some of the fossil fuel projects would source insurance from other providers and marketplaces, but many using Lloyd’s of London marketplace have failed to secure insurance elsewhere—Lloyd’s of London is sometimes their last chance. Let’s not give it to them.
Insurance providers also look to one another in setting their policies, so if Lloyd’s of London drops fossil fuel insurance, it is likely other insurance traders and providers will too—with a bit of encouragement.
Insurance might not be the sexiest subject, but it is a very vulnerable link in the chain needed to start and continue these huge climate-wrecking projects. It’s time Lloyd’s of London take responsibility for the role its insurance marketplace has in our collective future.
What is an insurance policy?
A contract that a company or individual takes out with an insurer to protect them against specific risks in ways that are agreed and noted in the contract.
What is ‘claims made’ insurance?
Type of insurance policy that will cover insurance claims made whilst the insurance policy is in force – even if the event leading to that insurance claim happened before that insurance policy came into force.
What is ‘claims occurring’ insurance?
Type of insurance policy that will cover insurance claims for events that occurred whilst the insurance policy is in force – even if the claim for it happens after the insurance policy stopped being in force.
No related insurance:
They don't insure coal mines e.g. they just cover travel insurance.
What is ‘run-off’ insurance:
AKA: Not 'live' insurance. Type of insurance policy that comes into effect when a company stops trading. So, any claims made under it will relate to events that happened before the company stopped trading and the policy started. This is used by companies that had ‘claims made’ insurance, and want insurance in case anyone takes action against them after the company for the period of time after they stopped trading but are still liable.
Want to know more?