Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Denial down under: Australian insurer rejects impact of climate change

Finance News Network (Australia): QBE Insurance Group Ltd’s (ASX:QBE) chairman, Belinda Hutchinson, has rejected that climate change is to blame for the natural disasters that have struck Australia and cost insurance companies billions of dollars.

Speaking at a business leaders conference in Sydney, Ms Hutchinson yesterday said that the catastrophic events that have taken place this year, the floods in Queensland and the fires, have nothing to do with climate change and rather that they are part of Australia's really long history of floods, fires and droughts.

Ms Hutchinson claims that QBE has received research that indicates that such weather-related events have nothing to do with climate change but are a part of the La Nina cycle. A spokesperson from Insurance Australia Group Ltd (ASX:IAG) has told Fairfax Media that, "It's too early to say whether the recent severe weather events are or are not attributable to climate change and this will only become clear when viewed in the context of longer term trends."…

Aftermath of fires in Kingaroy, Queensland, February 1951

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