Bermuda promotes role in climate finance at COP26
The island’s suitability as the world’s climate risk finance capital has been promoted by the Bermuda Business Development Agency at a key conference on climate change.
Representatives of the BDA were among Bermuda’s delegation to the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, which wrapped up on Friday.
The BDA hosted a luncheon at COP26 for a diverse group of 30 climate leaders and potential partners from around the globe.
While in Glasgow, the BDA said, it also hosted other events as well as meeting with government, technology, investment, business, public policy and environmental leaders and stakeholders.
This included the governor and senior staff of the Brazilian state of Mato Grasso, the leaders of the Insurance Development Forum, and the University of Cambridge’s Institute for Sustainable Leadership to discuss initiatives ranging from disaster insurance pools, trading market facilities to promote reforestation and ocean reoxygenation, natural capital investment and trading frameworks, ESG fund formation and the ways that Bermuda’s platform can help to accelerate these innovations.
David Hart, chief executive officer of the BDA, attended the conference along with BDA chairman Stephen Weinstein and deputy chairwoman Susan Pateras.
Mr Hart said: “The pace at COP26 was incredible. Every day was packed with meaningful conversations with asset management leaders, entrepreneurs, tech innovators and NGOs from across the globe, all interested in financing mechanisms to build climate resiliency.
“The BDA was certainly in the right place at the right time to talk about the unique advantages of the Bermuda platform to achieve these goals.”
Walter Roban, the Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affairs, spoke at the luncheon.
He said: “I reminded participants that becoming a key player on the global stage of climate risk financing must also include robust efforts to mitigate against the impacts of climate change.
“In fact, the reason I attended COP26 was to represent the 14 British Overseas Territories which, when combined, make up the fifth largest marine estate in the world.
“Bermuda is doing its part to protect our unique marine ecosystem and is currently in the process of building out a blue economy strategy which seeks to identify the 20 per cent protected area of Bermuda’s Exclusive Economic Zone and create a framework to balance development and sustainability in the areas of fishing, offshore renewable energy and tourism.”
John Huff, president and chief executive officer of the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers, which helped to sponsor the luncheon, said: “Over the last several decades, Bermuda has evolved into a globally significant property catastrophe re/insurance market that protects some of the world’s most vulnerable populations from the worst effects of climate change, including floods, hurricanes and wildfires.
“Since 1997, Bermuda’s commercial re/insurers have paid out over half-a-trillion dollars to policyholders and cedants in the US, EU and UK.”
Mr Hart said that the BDA held additional meetings in London after COP26.
He added: “Momentum is building for our next New York City climate risk finance roadshow, which I am excited to be attending from November 29 to December 2.”