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Climate Change Strategy of Allianz Group

Climate protection needs clear action

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“We encourage solutions for tomorrow’s climate. We anticipate the risks of climate change, work to protect and care for our customers and enable the transition to a low carbon economy."

Oliver Bäte, CEO Allianz SE

Droughts, floods and hurricanes – extreme weather events are increasing. To what extent are we already affected by climate change? And what role can Allianz play as a global insurance company and risk expert? The Allianz Climate Strategy defines the requirements and areas of action for us, as a responsible insurer and investor, over the coming years. Simone Ruiz-Vergote, Managing Director of the Allianz Competence Center for Climate Change at Allianz Climate Solutions, and Katharina Latif, Head of the Corporate Responsibility Department of the Allianz Group give details:

Ever more extreme weather conditions are influencing the insurance business. Are these events related to climate change?

Simone Ruiz-Vergote: Not every weather-related catastrophe can be attributed to climate change. Even with Hurricane Harvey in Texas in August 2017, scientists find it difficult to establish clear causal connections because there are many associated variables. What is undisputed, however, is that increases in extreme weather conditions are linked to long-term climate warming.

There has been a fivefold increase in average losses from natural catastrophes worldwide since the 1980s, so the value at stake has increased tremendously. To take 2016, insured damage caused by natural catastrophes amounted to €54 billion euros worldwide – a 42 percent increase on the previous year. Yet this is a reversible trend if measures are taken to enhance societal resilience. Allianz can help, for example, by running a “health check” on a city’s flood management or advising during infrastructure planning processes.

Our Climate Change Strategy

Allianz - Allianz climate strategy

Read more about the climate change strategy at Allianz in our full PDF report.

Climate Change Strategy 

How are Allianz customers affected by climate change?

Simone Ruiz-Vergote: Our customer surveys show that the topic is on their radar. Industrial customers in exposed regions are increasingly asking for better protection. Rising temperatures lead, for example, to stronger precipitation in Central Europe, which will also affect the homes of many people in the longer term. Those who have not taken sufficient precautions against the threat of property damage could stand to lose much.

Katharina Latif: Climate change also intensifies social inequality. Both topics are part of Allianz's Sustainability Strategy. A country threatened by flooding, such as Bangladesh, has limited financial resources to protect the population. Developing and newly industrialized countries in particular suffer from the fatal combination of weak environmental conditions, high energy requirements and extreme weather. Many people in those countries are not adequately informed about the risks, let alone insured. We want to reduce this “protection gap" in the long term by working together with public organizations.

Allianz - Simone Ruiz-Vergote, Allianz Climate Solutions
Simone Ruiz-Vergote is Managing Director of Allianz Climate Solutions - the Allianz Groups' Competence Center for Climate Change and Renewable Energy.

How does Allianz protect customers against climate change?

Katharina Latif: Overall, Allianz offers more than 150 green solutions worldwide. To mention three: we protect small farmers in Asia against crop failures via microinsurance; we act as risk managers for wind farm operators and solar plant operators; and private carsharing communities are in good hands with Allianz.

In our role as an investor, we take climate protection just as seriously. With the financing of wind andsolar parks worth over 4 billion euros, we are a leading European investor. Since 2016, we have systematically taken into account environmental, governance and social criteria when investing the insured funds. Life insurance customers in Germany, can therefore expect not only good yields but also have a good conscience.

Allianz - Katharina Latif, Corporate Responsibility Allianz
Katharina Latif is Head of the Corporate Responsibility Team of the Allianz Group.

And what is Allianz doing for the cause?

Simone Ruiz-Vergote: The climate strategy is also binding for us. Since 2012, the Allianz Group has been working with an innovative approach - through our own investments, among other things, in forestry protection in developing countries. In addition, we have set goals to reduce our environmental footprint and integrate these into our travel guidelines, energy supply and water and waste disposal. Today, we already draw a large share of our own electricity demand from renewable energies and we are looking at how we can expand this further. In addition, we decided to exit the financing of coal-based business models in 2015. For climate´s sake.

Allianz Climate Solutions GmbH (ACS) is the Competence Center for Climate Change and Renewable Energy of Allianz Group. ACS is responsible for Allianz’s Climate Change Strategy. It acts as a focal point and convener of Allianz’s risk and investment expertise worldwide to catalyze the development of solutions for a changing climate. ACS also offers insurance and advisory services for green energy projects to external clients and Allianz entities worldwide. ACS has been hosted by AllianzRe since 2016. Find out more about Allianz Climate Solutions.

The Corporate Responsibility team defines and executes the Group’s Corporate Responsibility strategy. We integrate ESG aspects into the insurance and investment business, conduct stakeholder dialogs with NGOs and peers, and publish the annual sustainability report and participate in sustainability ratings. We furthermore foster social inclusion – mainly through the Group-wide Encouraging Future Generations program – with employee volunteering, community service and partnering with organizations such as SOS children’s Villages.

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Our Climate Change Strategy

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Climate Change Strategy 

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