A strong Nebraska industry could play an outsized role in addressing climate change . . . .
Climatic events have accounted for 72% of global insurance claims and insured losses from 1980 to 2012, totaling $0.97 trillion (Munich Re, 2013). Estimated … losses are increasing at ~6% a year in real terms (Lomborg, 2010). The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change estimated total costs could be 1-1.5% of world GDP in 2030, or $0.85-1.35 trillion per year in 1990 dollars (Lomborg, 2010). It was also recently estimated that $0.24-0.51 trillion worth of U.S. property will likely be below sea level by 2100 (Bloomberg et al., 2014)… North America, Central America, and the Caribbean account for the majority of global insured and overall losses (59)
The insurance sector, which is the world’s largest industry in terms of revenue, could be a major partner in managing, spreading, and providing incentives for reducing natural catastrophe risk and, thereby, could promote adaptation to climate change.” While financial relief is the general tool after a catastrophe, the insurance industry may aid society in adapting to increasing risk and may enhance economic resilience to catastrophes by providing incentives for risk reductions (Mills and Lecompte, 2007)
In 2008, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) noted that “global warming and the associated climate change represent a significant challenge for Americans. As regulators of one of the largest American industries, the insurance industry, it is essential that we assess and, to the extent possible, mitigate the impact global warming will have on insurance”
And Fresh Ag Technology Thinking
The National Climate Assessment report (NCA, 2014) predicts an increase in extreme weather events, marked lengthening of growing seasons, and increased precipitation in Nebraska in the short term. A conventional response will be modifying production practices and seeking longer-season varieties of maize and soybeans. Although useful to adapt current crops to changing conditions, such “monoculture thinking” ignores creative potentials for testing new crops and cropping systems. Especially important are possibilities of introducing more biodiversity in time (rotations) and in space (multiple species in the field), and modifying the structure of agriculture, to provide greater farming systems and community resilience in the face of climate change. (47)