Several multinational insurers have released a joint statement urging governments to follow through with their pledge to phase out fossil fuel subsidies by 2020 at the G20 leaders’ summit in Hangzhou, China next month.
Aviva, Aegon NV, and AS Amlin are the proponents of the statement, along with the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA) and Open Energi. The insurers have a total of over US$1.2tn in assets.
The statement warns governments about the negative effects of continuing to provide funding for production of oil, goal, and gas. It tells governments to come out with resolutions that contain a clear timeline for the phase-out of fossil fuel strategies and to increase transparency about these subsidies.
According to the Overseas Development Institute and Oil Change International found the governments of G20 countries provide a total of US$444bn in subsidies annually for the fossil fuel industry, despite saying each year since 2009 to eliminate the subsidies and avoid contributing to devastating climate change.
Mark Wilson, CEO of Aviva plc, said: “Making a profit is essential in business. But we will only be in business in the future if we act sustainably and create wider long term social value. That’s just good business – and not acting sustainably is very bad business indeed.
“We’re calling on governments to kick away these carbon crutches, reveal the true impact to society of fossil fuels and take into account the price we will pay in the future for relying on them. Energy subsidies should instead be used to create a sustainable future through the social, environmental and economic objectives set out in the UN Sustainable Development Goals.”
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