NPR reported this morning that Allstate Insurance is discontinuing the sale of new homeowners’ policies in Connecticut, Delaware and New Jersey because it believes global warming makes catastrophic weather events more likely in those areas. These states join Florida, and parts of New York, Louisiana, Mississippi and California on Allstate’s list.
Having worked on behalf of insurance companies in the past, the Gent knows that insurers want to sell policies to as many people as possible. That’s how they make their money. For a major insurer to abandon several highly populated states indicates that they have looked at the data, done the modeling, and determined that the risk of global warming-related losses is just too great. That’s a pretty strong statement. Insurance actuaries are not driven by emotion or political positions. They are stone cold bean counters (but lovely people) and they are motivated only by risk and profitability. With all respect to Al Gore, their determinations are extremely persuasive evidence that the market can recognize and act on an “inconvenient truth” better than the political class.