Insuring Coral Reefs Reduce RISK

Every $1 spent on storm preparedness saves $4 in response and recovery spending. The new Bill Clinton Global Initiative Action Network on Post-Disaster Recovery has announced a series of eight unified programs that seek to help islands that were hit particularly hard.“In the wake of the terrible hurricanes, the people of these islands have shown a remarkable resilience and a resolve to do long-term work and build back better,” Clinton said at the launch event held at the University of Miami.

An estimated 840 million people around the world who live with the risk of coastal flooding NEED a safer, intact coastal reef or wave break system, both of which can be created with Reef Life Restoration advanced Marine Mineral Masonry. For these coastal communities, natural systems like coral reefs, beaches and wetlands provide the first line of defense against storms.

In fact, a healthy coral reef can reduce up to 97 percent of a wave’s energy before it hits the shore. Flooding from storms causes significant economic damage. As coastal populations grow and sea levels rise, the risks to coastal communities will increase. Scientific evidence shows that many coastal habitats, including mangroves, coral reefs and salt marshes help protect coastlines by absorbing wave energy and reducing flooding and erosion. Under favorable conditions, these nature based defenses can keep pace with changing environmental conditions and rising sea levels. In contrast, gray infrastructure, such as sea walls and levees, can be costly, rarely keeps up with environmental change, and often damages nearby shorelines and habitats.

The Nature Conservancy and the government of the Mexican state of Quintana Roo have created a trust that will purchase the first-ever insurance policy for a coral reef, Oceans Deeply reports.

Quintana Roo is home to the Mesoamerican Reef. At 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) long, it’s the second-largest reef in the world, bringing a lot of tourism to cities like Playa del Carmen.

The reef keeps hurricanes from stripping the region’s famous white sand beaches to nothing. But it comes at a cost — a Category 4 or 5 hurricane can destroy as much as 60 percent of a reef’s live coral, according to Oceans Deeply. Quintana Roo’s new insurance policy mandates that if a Category 4 or 5 hurricane hits a certain section of the coast, the policy will immediately pay out the money to repair and restore the reef, keeping the area valuable.

Links to Partners within the Insurance Industry:

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