Lloyd’s of London, the world’s biggest insurance market, has become the first major business organisation to warn about huge potential environmental damage from oil drilling in the Arctic in a new report, reports Julia Kollewe and Terry MacAlister at the UK Guardian. The report warns that the Arctic is not one but several ecosystems, and is “highly sensitive to damage” that would have a long-term impact. “Baseline knowledge about the natural environment and consistent environmental monitoring” is needed. Lloyd’s estimates a $100bn of new investment in Arctic development over the next decade, but believes cleaning up any Arctic oil spill, particularly in ice-covered areas, would present “ a unique and hard-to-manage risk.” Ultimately, countries might end up footing costly cleanup bills. Not mentioned is that further disruption of the Arctic, known to be a key driver of planetary climate, could have costly global ramifications. Richard Ward, Lloyd’s chief executive, urged companies not to “rush in [but instead to] step back and think carefully about the consequences of that action” before research was carried out and the right safety measures put in place.
Arctic oil rush will ruin ecosystem, warns Lloyd’s of London. Lloyd’s of London, the world’s biggest insurance market, has become the first major business organisation to raise its voice about huge potential environmental damage from oil drilling in the Arctic. The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/apr/12/lloyds-london-warns-risks-arctic-oil-drilling